Scams

Wedding Scams

Here come the scams—now it’s the wedding and event industry.  We all like to think the best of each other and scam artists use this sense of trust to take advantage of us. 

 

Your mind is filled with plans for the wedding of your dreams, only to result in empty promises and a devastated reality.  Several vendors in the Valley are under investigation for taking couples’ deposit money and disappearing.  Although it’s common to book a vendor and not speak with them until a couple months prior to the wedding, you want to make sure the vendor has been in the industry long enough to have a honorable reputation. Never book a vendor without verifying references and meeting face to face.  

 

Another dilemma facing couples is learning a vendor has gone out of business without informing any of their clients.  These unfortunate situations leave a couple scrambling at the last minute to find a replacement vendor for their wedding day.  So, before you place your deposit, make sure to do your research on any vendor and be mindful to keep in touch with them throughout your planning. 

 

The newest scam in the bridal market dupes bridal vendors.  A couple posing as a bride and groom requests wedding day services.  They typically have all the information you need, even a phone number to contact them.   Among the many warning signs the following are important:

 

Their company is paying for their wedding, but the couple temporarily resides outside the United States and will return prior to the wedding.  They have a very high budget for the number of guests attending.

 

The couple must expedite the process because of a wedding date in the next two or three months.

 

Originally they ask you to book several vendors, and later everything changes and they ask you to send a very large deposit to one key person—band, minister or photographer, etc.—someone who is part of the scam.

 

They want to make their deposit with a cashier’s check written in a larger anount than your services require in order for you to book the other vendors.  By the time the fraudulent cashier’s check is returned through the banking system (four to six weeks), you have made vendor payments with money that is now no longer in your account.

 

This is an example of a fraudulent email:

 

Hello Erin,
Thanks for your response and for making yourself available to plan my wedding.  We are so happy to have found you.  I want you to prepare the following for my wedding where I’ll be having approximately 60-70 guests on September 20th.  We need a beautiful wedding location, dinner, wedding cake photographer, videographer, DJ hair and makeup for my Bride. I want to let you know that my company will be responsible for the payment of the wedding ($70,000), as they have promised to send the payment to you by check to make things easy for us. They have agree to send the first payment to you ($7,000) and out of it, you will help me book my pastor before I return to the State so I do not lose the date. I am planning to come over to the State as soon as I finish the company assignment here with my fiancé.
You can call me +44 703 194 3191 or send me a quick reply
Thanks
Graham

 

Scam artists take the money of honest couples and vendors each year.  Be wise in your planning and client-vendor interactions so you do not become their next victim.

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