Beware of Notarios [Video]
Immigrants in Spanish-speaking communities, beware. “Notarios” or fake lawyers are preying on unsuspecting Latinos in the United States.
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From Dallas, Texas, Lawyers.com reporter Kevin Peters introduces you to one victim, Beronica Mascorro. She paid $1,500 to a fraudulent imposter who pretended to offer legal help and expertise.
In many Latin American countries, the term “notarios” signifies a person who is accredited by the government and has a license to practice law. Scam artists in the United States set up shop as notarios in Spanish-speaking communities, targeting people who want to green cards and U.S. citizenship.
Michelle Saenz-Rodriguez, an immigration attorney at Saenz-Rodriguez & Associates and the chair of the Texas Chapter of the American Immigation Lawyers Association, explains why people in the Spanish-speaking community are vulnerable victims to notarios.
She provides the following tips on how people can avoid the danger and expense of these crooks, posing as attorneys:
- Ask to see a license to practice law.
- Don’t pay for a referrals to an attorney.
- Insist on a written contract.