Certified immigration consultants in the United States such as independent paralegals, legal document assistants, and immigration services professionals, among others, are required to post and maintain a valid immigration consultant bond. The bond is mandatory to receive certification from the appropriate authority in their state of operation.
An immigration consultant bond serves as protection for the state and general public to protect customers pursuing immigration consultation from illegal actions on behalf of the business. Such unlawful activities can include fraud and misrepresented information. Immigration consultants who are certified put their clients at ease by letting them know they are working with someone who is following the law and will give them honest consulting.
Like with other types of surety bonds, an immigration consultant bond is a three-party contractual agreement which includes:
- A principal – the business
- An oblige – the state authority who will certify the consultancy
- A surety – the entity supplying the bond
Should an individual go against state rules their business is required to follow, the affected party can make a claim on their bond.
Those looking for help with immigration issues often prefer to hire an immigration consultant instead of an attorney. While immigration consultants can help consumers fill out important documents and submit the forms to government agencies, they cannot offer legal advice or represent anyone in Immigration Court.
Sometimes, dishonest immigration consultants take advantage of consumers by doing things such as:
- Pretending to be an immigration consultant or lawyer when they aren’t one
- Accepting a consumer’s money and not delivering any services
- Convincing a consumer to lie on an application or to an INS agent
- Holding onto a consumers paperwork and charging them money to get them back
- Filing an inaccurate application
- Charging a consumer money upfront but then requesting more money to continue the work
- Making false promises
If you’re looking to become a certified immigration consultant, you’ll want to work with a reputable bond company that can ensure you meet the requirements of your state authority, so that you are fully compliant. At Insurance Office of America (IOA Bonds), we have over 29 years of experience providing our clients with exceptional service. Call us today at 1-866-379-3151 to get your immigration consultant bond process started.