Canadian immigration services together with their partners, the Canada border services agency and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, work continuously on cracking down on immigration fraud that is always evolving and adapting around measures put in place to combat it. Marco Mendicino, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship acknowledges that while the majority of Canada’s visitors come to the country the correct way and in good faith, there are a large number of criminals who are looking to take advantage of applicants who are unaware of the danger. The Minister has highlighted the following important points to remember when you are thinking about immigrating to Canada or applying for you Canadian visa:
- No one can promise your application will receive special attention;
- No one can guarantee your application will be approved;
- It is not necessary to hire a representative or consultant, if you do always confirm their credentials and ensure that they are in good standing and authorised to do business with the Canadian government; and
- Remain vigilant - if it seems too good to be true, it most probably is.
Find Out if Your Immigration Representative is Authorized
For someone to represent you on your visa application they must be authorized and in good standing with one of the following bodies:
- Citizenship or immigration consultants must be a member of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council.
- Lawyers or notaries must be a member of the Canadian provincial or territorial law society.
- Paralegals must be members in good standing of the law society of upper Canada
If it is not clear and evident that any of these professionals are not in good standing with their respective governing bodies, you should not make use of their services. Always check these regulatory bodies online portals to ensure their qualifications and legitimacy are valid.
Never Respond To Threats
If anyone should ever contact you claiming to be an immigration official, lawyer or consultant with the threat of arrest, legal action, assault or kidnap it is a scam. Further, if they threaten that your application is in danger of being rejected or suspended without further payment, it is a scam. An immigration agent, lawyer or authorized representative would never threaten you or behave in a way that makes you uncomfortable.
Most importantly, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will not contact you in person, online or over the telephone to collect fees or fines to avoid deportation or other consequences.
What people who contact you with threats are trying to accomplish is either to solicit a direct payment from you or steal your personal information in a phishing scam.
Phishing scams come in the form of phone calls or official looking emails. In a phone call the person may even provide a name and agent number to seem legitimate, however always confirm their details before giving any personal information. Beware of unsolicited emails asking for personal information in order to continue your application process. Unless the communication is directly from the IRCC or your trusted consultant, do not proceed any further.
How Can I Tell If A Website Is A Scam?
There are a number of legitimate agencies that promote representatives’ services, such as this one, which you will need to pay for. Then there are copycats that make false guarantees; if anywhere on the site you are guaranteed entry to Canada, a high paying job or faster than recommended application processing times, it is likely a scam.
There are websites that copy the official Canadian government website. When you enter the official web page, it must be “Canada.ca” or end with “.gc.ca”.
There will be a small padlock on the left hand side of the browser bar, indicating the page is secure.
How We Can Help
We understand that it is possible to navigate the immigration process on your own, but we also recognize that with over 70 programs and visa options to choose from, the process can become quite overwhelming and confusing. But it doesn't have to be. By using our accredited Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) you will not only improve your chances of success in the visa application process, but you will get expert advice on which program is best for your specific needs. Our RCICs are highly qualified and are granted permission by the ICCRC to assist you with your eligibility evaluation, review all your documents and application forms and submit them to the Canadian government for you. Why take the chance of having your application denied because your forms are incorrect or sent in too late.
During these times of uncertainty, we will take care of the fine print while you choose your dream destination in Canada for you and your loved ones. All you have to do is complete our application form to receive your eligibility assessment today. It's just that simple.
Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn for up to date information and interesting blog posts on Canadian Immigration. For official updates on how the Canadian government is dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and how it is affecting visa applications, follow this link