The FTC prosecuted three companies recently scamming people with phony, expensive extended car warranties and obtained court judgments against all three. One of the companies, American Vehicle Protection Corporation (AVP) lied to consumers, telling them that AVP was affiliated with the automobile manufacturers and further lied about the protection provided by their expensive policies. Making matters worse, they also marketed their worthless products through telemarketing calls to people who were registered on the Do Not Call List.
Extended warranty scams have been with us for years. Actually, they are not “extended” warranties at all because if you read the fine print you will notice that although the notice that often comes through a postcard looks official, it is not from either the car manufacturer who issued your original warranty or the car dealer who sold you the car. The warranties themselves vary from scammer to scammer with some of the “extended” warranties being relatively worthless, but with all of them based on misrepresentations.
If you are registered for the Do Not Call list and you do receive a call from a telemarketer attempting to sell you an extended warranty, you can be confident that the call is a scam because no legitimate telemarketer would call you if you are enrolled in the Do Not Call list. It is also important to note that while telemarketing is not, in and of itself, illegal, commercial telemarketing, such as the sale of these “extended warranties” through robocalls is always illegal.
In regard to car warranties, it is always a good idea to check with your local auto dealer as to what warranties cover your car. Never trust anything that comes to you by way of an illegal robocall or telemarketing call if you have enrolled in the federal Do Not Call List. Never feel pressured to act immediately when someone calls you on the phone with an unsolicited offer and never give any personal information including your credit card over the phone to someone who calls you because you can never be sure who is actually calling.
Registering for the Do Not Call List is easy and free. Merely go to http://www.donotcall.gov to register your phone number.
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