INDIANA – Whether you’re heading to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway or hanging out at a backyard BBQ, Attorney General Todd Rokita is warning Hoosiers to be wary of scams. With recent storms, scammers will be out in full force trying to sell you scams related to clean-up, repair, and rebuilding.
“Hoosiers can avoid scammers and ultimately protect their wallets by doing research, asking the right questions, and requiring full written contracts,” Attorney General Rokita said. “It can be tempting to accept anyone’s help after a thunderstorm or tornado damages your home, but it’s crucial to take a step back and fully vet the contractor.”
Unfortunately, far too many fly-by-night con artists appear on people’s doorsteps, promise to make needed repairs and then disappear forever with their victims’ down-payments in their pockets.
“Storm threats don’t come just from wind, rain, and tornadoes,” Attorney General Rokita said. “They also come in the form of unscrupulous schemers who use those weather emergencies to cheat consumers out of money. We are here to help safeguard Hoosiers from their tactics.”
Attorney General Rokita is sharing the following tips to help Hoosiers avoid falling victim to storm-chasing scammers:
- Be skeptical of people promising immediate clean-up and debris removal.
- Check out contractors’ reputations before enlisting their services.
- Ask for IDs, licenses, and proof the contractor is both bonded and insured.
- Get more than one estimate for work.
- Don’t believe any promises that aren’t in writing.
- Never pay in cash.
- Don’t pay the full amount for the project upfront.
Dealing with a disaster is never easy. But when scammers target people just trying to recover, the experience can become even more difficult. If you ever suspect a scam of any type, file a complaint at indianaconsumer.com or call Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office at 1-800-382-5516.