You Can Avoid Fraud
simple, but most people forget the most common ways to avoid being
If it’s a
deal that won’t last until tomorrow or next week, it
probably isn’t a good deal anyway.
Honest business people are willing to let people take
their time and make a wise decision.
Dishonest business people don’t care.
Take time to consider the deal.
wants you to keep the deal a secret, it is almost a guaranteed
con, no matter how good it seems.
Talk it over with friends, family, and an attorney.
Letting other people look at it often shows it for what
it is because they are not emotionally involved.
Don’t try to sell the idea, just give them the
facts. If it is a
great deal, they’ll tell you.
Be sure to also work with your attorney through the
whole process. A
good attorney will help make sure that you operate above the
law and that you have a properly prepared contract.
suggests that a great deal will get you something for nothing,
it is a fraud, GUARANTEED!
It could also be something that lands you in jail or
worse. (Check out
the Nigerian schemes.)
All contracts should be in
writing and all terms should be clearly spelled out.
With very few exceptions, stipulations that are not included
in the contract are not enforceable. The court will
likely assume that any prior verbal agreements that are not
included in the contract were part of the process of
negotiation process and one or neither party intended them as
part of the final contract.
Remember, a contract and all provisions in the contract must
be agreed to by both parties. If a provision is
not in the contract, the court must assume that the parties
did not agree to it.
Be sure to
read all the print, including the back of any agreement.
There are often terms that are included there that will
affect your rights.
don’t fully understand the agreement, demand time to review
it. If you still
don’t understand it, talk to an attorney and get their opinion.
You will pay for an attorney’s time, but in most
cases, the costs are less than the potential risk.
sign any contract based upon verbal promises that are not
represented within the contract.
In most cases, a written contract overrules any verbal
understanding or promise that was made prior to signing the
some cases, verbal promises that are made after signing the
contract may be enforceable, but only if they can be proven.
If there are verbal agreements made after the documents are
signed, make sure that those conditions are added to all
copies of the document or a subsequent addendum to the
contract is signed. Make sure that all addendums are
signed and dated and that you receive a copy of each.
In some cases where you are promised additional services, a
formal letter that is signed by a corporate officer will
suffice. However, the specific language of that letter is very
A letter that seeks to explain a portion of the contract is
generally enforceable as a part of that contract because it
defines the writer's intent within the contract. A
letter that promises additional services may be viewed as a
good-will gesture and may or may not be enforceable. If
in doubt, you should seek the opinion of an attorney to make
sure that you have legal grounds to enforce the provisions of
If you make
an agreement, put it in writing and have both parties sign it.
You should do this even for trusted family and friends. Doing so
will make sure that all parties fully understand the terms and
will serve as a point of reference if terms are forgotten or
in case of the death of one of the parties. The
surviving party will then have documentation to present to the
line, if people are willing to give their word of honor about
an agreement, they shouldn't have a problem committing their
signature to a contract. All too often, people will be
shy about requiring a friend or relative sign a
contract. Signing the contract however, will often save
the friendship because it affirms the fact in the mind of both
parties, that this is a contract, not just a plan or an idea
that one or both parties can opt out of at any time.
conmen by asking for references and then check them out.
Conmen don’t have good references.
Sure, they may come up with excuses why they cannot or
won’t give you a reference, but if they can’t, walk away.
If a person gives references, be sure to check them out
thoroughly. Most conmen know that many people will not
bother to check references because they assume that nobody
would give them false references. In some cases, the
references have had bad or no history with the person or
your local Chamber of Commerce and BBB.
Make sure that these people with whom you intend to do
business, haven’t left the last fifty customers holding the
proverbial bag. A clean record doesn't guarantee that
there rare no problems, but a bad record is an obvious red
schemes are for the birds.
There are none. You
aren't going to make $50,000 per year surfing the Internet or
reading books. Nobody is going to pay you hundreds of
thousands of dollars per year searching down dead-beat
dads. You aren't going to get rich selling knickknacks
on the Internet. Only an idiot is going to sell you his
$250,000 house for $150,000. And if putting ads in local
papers was so lucrative, would they be telling you their
Any time that someone tells you or infers to you that they
have a "wealth-building secret" that you can buy for
$59, ask yourself if it was so good, why are they selling it
so cheap and why do they have to advertise at all?
There is no
such thing as a guaranteed high rate of return on an
there were, everyone would be all over it, and the guy that
wants to do business with you wouldn’t need your money.
He’d have access to unlimited funds and
wouldn’t share it with you.
If someone says the word “Guarantee”, walk away.
There are none.
smooth operators. If they weren’t, they couldn’t stay in business.
Even if they sound nice and sincere, you owe it to
yourself to check them out. Remember, successful conmen
don't get to be successful unless they are very good at
try to determine what makes you tick.
If you are Catholic, Baptist, Jewish, etc., they know
how to become that too, hoping that you will bond with them
and not do your due diligence. If you are liberal or
conservative, they can do either.
Look out for salespeople that tell you that they are just like
you. Don't buy the product or service based purely on
what you think of the salesperson. They aren't
there to make friends, but most will make you think they are.
Save yourself some frustration. Check everybody out with
their references and the institutions that watch our for
Having done it all right,
there is still the potential to be taken. However, if
you fully check out all your resources, you will be able to
avoid the bad guys almost every time.
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