Work At Home - Home Based Business
Work at home job opportunities appear in newspapers, mailings, national magazines, and online everyday. Some of the offers include stuffing envelopes, reviewing movies, medical billing, etc. Your BBB suggests using extreme caution when responding to any such ad. They may promise that you can earn hundreds, even thousands of dollars every week, full or part-time, in the comfort of your own home. Generally, the only person making any money is the person running the ad.
Due to the fact that there is little or no demand for most of these work-at-home activities, your BBB has determined that earnings claims are highly exaggerated. It is important to know that almost all work-at-home schemes end up with complaints, even though they may have none when they first start. They typically end up going out of business or facing government action.
Most of these companies require you to pay an up-front fee to them in order to participate in their program. The BBB advises that money-back guarantees often offered by work-at-home companies usually contain so many restrictions that consumers rarely get their money back.
The promoter may claim that the program is "legitimate" or "approved by the Post Office." It's not! Postal Inspectors investigate and prosecute people involved in these promotions and you could find yourself the subject of criminal action for mail fraud if you become involved.
WHERE TO COMPLAIN: If you have already bought into a program you believe may not be legitimate, take these steps:
First, contact the company and ask for your money back.
File a complaint with the BBB in the area where the company is located. Even if the company refuses to resolve your complaint, a number of complaints against the same company may help other callers to avoid the scheme.
Complain to the Federal Trade Commission, (877-382-4357, www.ftc.gov). Although the FTC will not help resolve individual disputes, it will take action if a pattern of deceptive or unfair practices becomes evident.
If you received the offer in the mail, file a complaint with the US Postal Inspector, (877 876-2455, www.usps.com/postalinspectors).
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