For the background on this initiative, click on the link below for the executive
summary. In the meantime, please read and be aware of the following information provided from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration
Services, Department of Homeland Security who have partnered with the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice Access
to Justice Program to educate the public and/or stakeholders regarding information that is available to them.
Cick here to download the Executive Summary
To: US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Customers:
Avoid Misleading Online Businesses and Fees
USCIS has received a large number of applications prepared by an online
business that charges users to complete USCIS forms. In most cases, the charge for preparing an application is the same as
the USCIS filing fee. When applicants pay these businesses online using an electronic check, the applicant is only paying
for the service provided to prepare the application, and not the actual USCIS filing fee.
As a result, applicants
attach a copy of a cashed electronic check when mailing their applications to USCIS. However the applicant paid the Online
business, but not the USCIS filing fee.
Because the applicant has not paid the USCIS filing fee, USCIS cannot
process these applications and must return them to the applicant.
USCIS urges applicants to carefully read the
user agreements provided by non-government websites. This information should help the applicant determine what services he
or she is paying the online service provider for and minimize the possibility that the application will be rejected for the
reasons noted above.
USCIS reminds applicants to avoid:
websites that identify themselves as being an official government website Remember:
government websites always include “.gov”, not “.com” in the web address
that charge applicants for blank USCIS forms
It is FREE to download USCIS forms on http://www.uscis.gov/forms or to order forms by calling USCIS at (800) 870-3676.
For how to avoid immigration
services scams and identify who is authorized to provide legal advice, see:
Don’t Be Fooled by Copycat Immigration-Help
When you go online to download and fill out immigration forms, ensure that you know the
difference between official government websites and websites run by private businesses.
See our recent Blog posting
on this topic: