How to Avoid Scam Artists assisting with South African Immigration

How to Avoid Scam Artists Assisting with South African Immigration

Scammers may attempt to trick you into thinking they are legitimate immigration practitioners, lawyers or even home affairs officials. Time and time again, we see situations where a foreigner provides a large sum of cash and expects legitimate documents, only to be told by immigration officials years later that not only is their document fake, but they are facing criminal charges for having fraudulent documentation.

Warning signs:                                                          

With nearly a decade of experience, we have pretty much seen it all. Signs of a scammer trying to assist you with immigration normally have one or more of these red flags:

– ‘Knows’ people in government who will expedite your documents for a ‘fee’;
– Payments are always done in cash and are large sums;
– Meetings are always done at random locations – there is no office to meet at;
– There is no traceable information such as a physical address
– The person does not give you their real name or any proof of who they are
– You meet the person in line at Home Affairs or outside a visa
– You are not asked to provide documents such as medical and radiology reports or a police clearance from your home country

Important to remember:

The Department of Home Affairs is the sole authorized agency of the South African Government to issue visas. There are no such persons who are registered ‘immigration practitioners’ in terms of the new Immigration Act. Working with a registered immigration practitioner offers you no protection and these persons are not held accountable by any professional body.

Look for assistance from a person/company who is held accountable by a professional body, such as a lawyer. Lawyers are required to be registered with the Law Society of South Africa and you can check if a person is a registered lawyer here:

Any foreign individual who now resides in South Africa or intends to do so should seek the counsel and help of a skilled South African immigration attorney who has experience dealing with the Department of Home Affairs and Immigration Law.

Feel free to Contact Us for any Legal Immigration Assistance.