Fraud Scheme Targeting Families of Unaccompanied Children
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General is alerting the public about a fraud scheme that preys on the families of unaccompanied migrant children entering the United States.
These children, apprehended by the Department of Homeland Security, are transferred to the care of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) within the Administration for Children and Families, an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services. ORR then makes and implements placement decisions for these children.
Perpetrators of this fraud scheme demand substantial payments from family members, claiming the money is needed to cover processing and travel expenses in order to reunite these unaccompanied children with their families. Individuals carrying out this fraud scheme claim they need payments ranging from several hundred to several thousand dollars.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement does not request any fees or payments related to unaccompanied children. If someone asks you to make a payment for fees or expenses related to the processing, travel or reunification of unaccompanied children, do not under any circumstances give the person money, credit card information, bank account numbers, or any other form of payment. Alert others to this type of fraud and remind relatives not to give strangers any personal or financial information.
Anyone with information about the fraud scheme described above should contact the Office of Inspector General at:
Web site: TIPS.HHS.GOV
Mail: US Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Inspector General
ATTN: OIG HOTLINE OPERATIONS
PO Box 23489
Washington, DC 20026
Phone: 1-800-HHS-TIPS (1-800-447-8477)
Fax: 1-800-223-8164 TTY: 1-800-377-4950