Marriage Fraud

Marriage by mail is a risky business. Many reports have been made to the Embassy of fraud schemes in Belarus. These schemes are typically designed as marriage, relationship, or friendship announcements but may have other shapes and forms, too. Encounters are generally made through e-mail, Internet chat rooms, matrimonial websites, etc. These offers should be treated with extreme caution.

It has occurred that individuals who respond to direct requests for money, solicitation of fees, or the implications of the phrases like “I can’t pay my train ticket to come and see you” have lost their money. Any disbursement of funds to an individual here–for no matter how noble the cause may sound–is at your own risk.

U.S. citizens may feel it necessary to contact legal representatives if they wish to pursue a claim against a Belarusian individual. A list of lawyers (PDF/22kb) is available from the Consular Section.