How To Avoid An Immigration Scam

By James Metcalfe | March 24, 2016

James Metcalfe - Director of ImmigrationJim Metcalfe – Director of Immigration: An immigration scam was recently brought to my attention.

A man contacted me after he came across a Canadian company’s site which said that the company would get foreigners a job and a work visa in Canada….after they had paid a $120 “evaluation fee.” I was instantly suspicious.

Job And Visa Scams

I checked the company’s website and was amazed that, among other jobs, they were offering employment in Alberta’s oil fields. Whoa. The situation in the energy sector in Alberta is at an all-time low, with the price of crude oil falling well below the cost of production. The news of layoffs in Alberta is rife. Where would these jobs be coming from?

As I looked closer at the website, I noted that it was not written in the best of Canadian English. It contained plenty of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.

The website also said that the company had an office in Houston. This is not unheard of, as Houston is the centre of the petroleum industry in North America. However, when I did a Google Maps search of the address, it turned out to be a residential area with what appeared to be modest single family homes.

I also noted that the website had no “team page” and no telephone numbers, only an email address. In addition, the company talked about obtaining Labour Market Opinions or LMOs . This term has not been used by the Canadian government in a number years. LMOs were phased out when LMIAs (Labour Market Impact Assessments) were phased in.

Given the style of writing, and from my experience in the Far East, I figured the business was operating out of South Asia.

How To Avoid An Immigration Scam

From all of the above evidence, I concluded that the website was just part of another scam. The people running it are out to collect a small amount of money (in this case $120) from a great number of people. They are operating on the basis that while you can’t fool all of the people all of the time, you can surely fool some of them.

For prospective immigrants using such pages, I advise you to remember that if something is too good to be true, then it’s false. Does someone want money up front? Red flag. Is someone offering a job and a work visa together? Red flag. Are they promising to get it done “quick and easy?” Red flag.

Remember: do not pay anyone to find you a job in Canada. Most Canadian provinces have laws prohibiting the practice. Employers pay staff to find employees, not the other way around.

Do your homework, save your money, and stay safe.