Washington Workshop Helps Immigrants Avoid Notary Fraud

space-needle-1509141_1280Volunteers at Yakima Valley Community College in Washington state held a workshop for immigrants trying to become US citizens. The purpose of the event was to provide legal advice and help the immigrants with paperwork, which can be a taxing process due to language barriers and insincere help from public notaries.

When immigrants come to the US they often turn to notaries for advice because many of them perceive notary publics to be as legally accomplished as attorneys. This misconception often leads to egregious charges for files and applications or having a fraudulent notary enter incorrect information on applications. In extreme cases, deportation has resulted.

To put an end to notary fraud, the Washington Attorney General, and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project have teamed up to identify dishonest immigration services offered online and take legal action against these fraudulent notaries. The Washington assistant attorney general advises immigrants to spring for a licensed lawyer for the paperwork rather than trusting a notary public; while more expensive up front, hiring an attorney can help save immigrants