In today’s society, many immigrants need immigration assistance but don’t know whether to get an immigration consultant, or an immigration attorney. Both have immigration in the name but what is the difference? What does an immigration consultant do compared to an immigration attorney? An immigration consultant is NOT the same as an immigration attorney. The huge difference between immigration consultants and attorneys is that immigration consultants are not allowed to give legal assistance. There are many things that immigration consultants cannot do.
- Represent you before USCIS
- Give you legal advice on what benefit you may apply for
- Give you advice on what to say in an immigration interview
- Charge considerable fees
Although an immigration consultant cannot do these things, there are still other things that you can benefit from an immigration consultant.
- Help you by filling in the blanks on pre-printed USCIS forms
- Help you translate documents
But why do I really need an immigration consultant? The real question is, do you really need one? If you have trouble filling in forms on a document, or need translating, then you should definitely consider getting an immigration consultant. If you’re not sure you are eligible for a visa (criminal history, etc) an immigration consultant will not be able to help you.
Some “Notarios” in the U.S. maliciously claim the qualifications to provide legal immigration assistance. The word “Notario” is the Spanish-language term for notary in Latin America. Notary publics in the United States are prohibited from the same legal qualifications as notaries in Latin America, they are not attorneys and they need to fill out some requirements with the State if they want to help clients with immigration paperwork.
An Immigration Consultant can be a Notary Public holding a Bond to perform the service with the State of California, also Immigration Consultant has to display in their offices, fees, bond number and an statement explaining that they are not attorneys.