Be smart when giving to diaster relief
TOPEKA – In light of the devastating storm system that hit the East Coast last week, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt warns Kansans to be aware of possible scam artists seeking to profit from the generosity of others.
Schmidt warns the public to make sure they are donating to a reputable charity and to specify that a charity uses donations for intended purposes.
“When natural disasters strike, it is human nature to offer help,” Schmidt said. “But, please donate wisely to established, legitimate disaster-relief charities.”
Here are a few simple tips for donating, to avoid being scammed:
Make donations to established organizations with a strong track record of organizing and providing disaster relief.
Initiate the donation yourself, rather than responding to online or phone solicitations.
Avoid door-to-door solicitors or offers from charities to stop by a consumer’s home to pick up a check. These too could be fraudulent.
Do not fall prey to high-pressure pitches from solicitors. Legitimate charities allow you time to think about how much — and when — you choose to donate.
Be wary of charities that ask for alternate forms of payment. Legitimate charities rarely if ever ask you to give by wire transfer.
The Kansas Attorney General’s Office is dedicated to consumer protection. More information on avoiding charity scams is available on the Attorney General’s website at www.ag.ks.gov.