Date First Reported: September 2011

Primary Name Associated: Akemi Kobayashi

Description of Potential Fraud:


Over twenty lawyers in Canada and the U.S. have notified us that they have been contacted by the purported Akemi Kobayashi (or Julie Kobayashi or Kameko Kobayashi) with regards to a collaborative family law agreement scam. This is a fraud we have seen before under several other names and similar scenarios. For details on how this fraud works and a full list of names attached to it see our Confirmed Fraud page.

Here are two examples of the initial, longer Akemi email. Here is the long version:

From: Akemi Kobayashi [email protected]
Sent: Friday, May 07, 2010 11:09 PM
To: undisclosed-recipients;
Subject: Attention Counsel

Dear Counsel,

My name is Ms AKEMI KOBAYASHI. I was married to my ex husband NEWBERG KOBAYASHI (who lives in your jurisdiction) for 7 yrs and in July 2009,
We mutually agreed under a Collaborative Participation Law Agreement to go our separate ways. Newberg had agreed to pay me $914,000.00 under terms of the agreement so that I can settle down and to his credit; he has paid me $104,000.00 but with an outstanding balance of $810,000.00.I am hereby seeking your legal assistance in collecting the balance or helping me enforce the agreement, and have him honor the agreement inentirety. I am presentlt back home in Japan.

I will be providing further information upon your request. I believe that one of the reasons he has refused to pay is because I have re-married. I understand that been remarried does not automatically void the agreement.
Prior to our separation due to irreconcilable differences, we were married for 23yrs of which by his instruction, I was a full time house wife to carter for our four children. Please get back to me if this is a case you can undertake. Let me know if you require consultation fee before you advice or look at the evidence, I am hereby seeking your firm to assist in collecting. the balance from him. He has agreed already to pay me the balance but it is my belief that a Law firm like yours is needed to help me collect payment from my ex-husband or litigate this matter if he fails to pay as promised.

My email address again is; [email protected]


Tel: 81-3458-01740

Here is the short Julie version

Subject: Attn: Counsel, I am interested in your professional service!
Date: Thu, 22 Sep 2011 09:07:55 +0800 (CST)
From: Julie Kobayashi
To: lawyer

I am interested in your professional service.
Please let me know if your services are available and how soon we can commence.
J. Kobayashi

How to handle a real or suspected fraud

If you have been targeted by any of these frauds, please forward any of the emails and supporting documents that you have received to [email protected]

If you suspect you are acting on a matter that might be a fraud, call LAWPRO at 1-800-410-1013 (416-598-5899). We will talk you through the common fraud scenarios we are seeing and help you spot red flags that may indicate you are being duped. This will help you ask appropriate questions of your client to determine if the matter is legitimate or not. If the matter you are acting on turns out to be a fraud and there is a potential claim, we will work with you to prevent the fraud and minimize potential claims costs.

If you have been successfully duped, please immediately notify LAWPRO as there may be a claim against you.

For more immediate updates on fraud and claims prevention, subscribe to the email or RSS feed updates from LAWPRO’s AvoidAClaim blog.

Fraud Fact SheetMore fraud prevention information and resources are available on the practicePRO Fraud page, including the Fraud Fact Sheet, a handy reference for lawyers and law firm staff that describes the common frauds and the red flags that can help identify them.