More Reasons for Con-Artists to Get Out of the Business of Immigration Consulting

The recent announcement of charges being laid against an immigration consultant and two associates in Nova Scotia* has further shown the importance of the stricter regulations recently introduced by CIC.

The punishment guidelines add additional deterrent. The requirements of license and permission for consultants who deal with CIC have been made more stringent. The automatic review of persons suspected of fraudulent representation has been incorporated into the new rules.

It has now been made less lucrative for an unauthorized consultant to ply their trade. Just as it is against the law to practice medicine without the proper license and documentation, now immigration consultants will no longer be risking the lives and livelihoods of their clients/patients.

The only potential loop-hole I can see is the ability of a “friend” to be an unpaid consultant. The service payment may still be made surreptitiously. However, there is now a directive that requires the investigation of unpaid consultants when “red flags” emerge. For instance: If the “free” consultant’s name appears as the representative to a number of individuals, an inquiry as to his/her legitimacy is launched. When this occurs, the nervous client may admit to their fraudulent activity and subsequently point the finger in the direction of their consultant who can well be charged with a crime.

The persons in this case have fled the country and with warrants issued for their arrest, they may not return. As a result of those charges and publicity surrounding this case, the inscrutable consultant will now have to go even further underground in order for them to continue to defraud their clients and dupe the Canadian government.

As long as the government doesn’t overdo the streamlining of the immigration system in Canada, or perhaps even take it over, there may very well be a shortage of licensed consultants in the future. This could become an opportunity for legitimate ICCRC members, but it may also presuppose a new system that would be designed to eliminate the shortage of qualified applications into Canada. This could result, as I said, in a system that would eliminate, even further, the need for a privately funded consultant.

Although it is unlikely a Conservative government would take the approach of adding more public servants (immigration consultants) to the payroll, an NDP government may do just that. We must also consider that the PNP in each province can be adjusted to “recruit” immigrants through their own advertising and network of consultants across the globe.

The changes introduced in order to prevent fraud and abuse of our compassionate society are continuing. It’s natural for change to foretell future changes as benefits arise from those revisions. Governments with fortitude and foresight will also see to it that more recommendations are implemented and tried out in order to seek the perfection of a system that has had many imperfections in the past.

Time will tell, but in the meantime, there is an ever-changing system in our midst. We’d best get used to it and be prepared for (and willing to adjust to) even more changes.

William Howie
Immigration Program Student at Ashton College
under the tutelage of Jose Godoy Toku


* More charges may come in immigration fraud case

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