Wash. AG warns of magazine sellers' return

Nick Rees Jun. 7, 2012, 6:58am


SEATTLE (Legal Newsline) - Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna warned on Monday that door-to-door magazine sellers have returned to the state with offers of outrageously priced subscriptions to fund "second chance" opportunities for inner city youth.

McKenna's office has received many complaints from consumers claim to have paid anywhere from $50 to $784 for magazine subscriptions from the door-to-door sellers. The consumers say that they were touched by the sellers' stories and believed their purchases would be for a good cause.

The solicitors claim that they are earning money for college, working toward a better job, receiving points for a free trip or contributing proceeds to help homeless youth, McKenna said.

"Unfortunately, another common theme is that time and again, consumers throughout the country never receive the magazines they purchased, or hear from the sellers again, and have no idea what happened to their money." McKenna said.

McKenna warned that the solicitors often claim to work for "business or job training" companies that give young adults a "fresh start" on life by sending them door-to-door.

One seller claimed to represent a company called "Strictly Business," according to a recent consumer complaint. The consumer found that the company was based in Texas and had a Better Business Bureau rating of "F" for its failure to respond to complaints or to deliver magazines.

"Besides the potential of falling victim to fraud, there are many other risks involved, such as threats to personal safety or the possibility of being a victim of identity theft," McKenna said. "It all makes buying items from strangers who knock on your door a bad idea."

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