Posted on 1st June 2017
Couples planning their wedding are being warned against becoming victims of fraud.
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau is offering advice to people planning their big day so they can protect themselves against scammers.
People are urged to:
- Pay for services like photography and catering by credit card. This will provide you with protection under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, for purchases above £100 and below £30,000. This means that even if a company goes into liquidation before your big day, you could claim a refund through your credit card company.
- Check that companies are genuine. Some companies run their businesses entirely via social media sites, offering low cost services. While many are genuine, some may not be insured or may even be fraudulent. Ensure you obtain a physical address and contact details for the vendor and verify this information. Should you experience any problems, you will then be able to make a complaint to Trading Standards or consider pursuing via the Small Claims Court.
- Ensure you obtain a contract before paying money for services. Make certain you fully read and understand what you are signing and note the terms of cancellation.
- Consider purchasing wedding insurance. This can protect you from events that would not be covered under the Consumer Credit Act.
- Complete research on each vendor, ensuring you are dealing with a bona fide person or company. Explore the internet for reviews and ratings and ask the vendor to provide details of past clients you can speak to. You should do this even if using companies recommended by a trustworthy friend or source.
- For services such as wedding photographers, beware of websites using fake images. Look for inconsistencies in style. Meet the photographer in person and ask to view sample albums. If you like an image from a wedding, ask to view the photographs taken of the whole event so you can see the overall quality.
- Remember, if something appears too good to be true, it probably is.
If you have been affected by this, or any other scam, report it to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040, or visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk