Alabama State Bar
User ID   Password  
New Scam Alert!
(May 31, 2013)

A Montgomery lawyer has become the latest victim of a real estate deposit fraud. Here’s the scenario: an unidentified individual places an advertisement to lease property in Pennsylvania, Virginia and other states and says he is using the legal services of an attorney. In this case, the attorney being named is the only one listed in the ASB Member Directory, but he isn’t known by his legal name. The address being used by the scammer is not the attorney’s actual address. Several individuals have contacted the attorney telling him that they have sent him money.
   
All attorneys should be on the alert to this type of scam. If you become aware of the same or a similar situation involving your name and/or law firm, you should immediately report the incident to local authorities, the Office of General Counsel at the Alabama State Bar and the FBI at the Internet Crime Complaint Center. Additionally, be sure to closely monitor your credit report or bank accounts to ensure that your identity is not the only thing being stolen. If you have been a victim of an Internet scam or have received an email that you believe was an attempted scam, please file a complaint at www.IC3.gov.
    
The IC3 was established as a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) to serve as a means to receive Internet-related criminal complaints and to further research, develop and refer the criminal complaints to federal, state, local or international law enforcement and/or regulatory agencies for any investigation they deem to be appropriate.
   
Since scams of all types are too numerous to catalogue, a professional liability company in Ontario, Canada, called LAWPRO, well-known to law practice management advisors, has been compiling information about scams being perpetrated on lawyers in North America via its “Avoid a Claim” blog. LAWPRO has been compiling a list of names they’ve seen associated with various types of fraud. You may want to review this material and bookmark each of these pages:

· Business loan fraud

· Commercial debt collection fraud

· Divorce settlement and collaborative family law agreement fraud

· Employee injury settlement fraud

· Huge collection of fake IDs, documents and checks given to lawyers

· Real estate bad-check fraud