The Colorado legislature moved forward on Thursday with a bill to punish notaries who defraud immigrants.

According to the Colorado Attorney General’s office, the problem of unqualified notaries offering immigration-related legal services is widespread in the state.

Christine Saldivar hired a notario to fill out her marriage petition to a Mexican citizen. She says the incorrectly filled-out form resulted in an ongoing legal nightmare.

"The bad legal advice we received has cost Jorge, our children, and myself almost 12 years of heartache," Saldivar said.

Backers of the bill say some of the problem stems from language confusion, because in Latin American countries “notarios” do often have some legal training.

The bipartisan bill cracking down on predatory notaries passed its first committee on a seven to four vote.