CF Q&A Queen
Joined: 28 May 2005
|Posted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:51 pm Post subject: Proof-of-Purchase & Complete Deals [PLEASE READ]
|New Policy - Effective Immediately -
Due to numerous complaints and obvious misunderstandings of the legalities and the issue of Mail-In-Rebate fraud...
No posts or Private Messages (PMs) asking to trade, buy or sell ANY rebate qualifiers OR "Complete Deals" for cash rebates are allowed on CouponForum.
For clarification, Mail-In-Rebate qualifiers (any material needed to qualify for a manufacturer cash rebate) include:
• CRT: Cash Register Tape(s)
• UPC: Universal Product Code(s)
• DCRT: Dated Cash Register Receipt(s)
• POP: Proof of Purchase(s). (All of the above can be considered as "proof of purchase")
A "Complete Deal" is all of the materials (qualifiers, proofs, and rebate forms) needed to submit a rebate form requesting a rebate check from a manufacturer or fulfillment center.
Trading, buying and/or selling of any of the above mentioned items is considered and treated as fraud by manufacturers and fulfillment centers.
If your UPCs, weight circles, codes, etc., are not being sent to a fulfillment center for a MAIL-IN rebate check, you're not in violation of CF policy.
An increase of PMs specifically concerning this issue have been received and we must therefore address the concern.
For informational and educational purposes, some quotes and links concerning Mail-In-Rebate fraud are posted below. This change is in the overall best interest of everyone on the forum and is in the legal best interest of CouponForum itself.
Posts reported to be of this nature will be Locked, Deleted, etc without warning and without notice! PMs and posts of this nature are expressly forbidden. Repeat offenders may have their access to the forum revoked.
Thank you for your understanding and compliance in this matter.
Mail-In-Rebates and Fraud
From the Small Business Encyclopedia: "Rebates"
|Rebates, widely known as refunds, are a popular tool used by businesses to promote their products and services. Rebates are distinct from coupons and other forms of discounting in that they reimburse a customer for part of the purchase price following, rather than at the time of, the sale. By offering consumers cash back on the purchase price, rebates provide an incentive to buy a particular product. |
The U.S. Department of Justice
Mail Fraud and False Representation Statutes: (Often sited on Mail-In-Rebate forms)
Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 1341; Title 39, U.S. Code, Section 3005
From the United States Postal Inspection Service:
|The Mail Fraud Statute (Title 18, United States Code, Section 1341) is the nation's oldest federal consumer protection statute and effectively fights white-collar fraud and product and service misrepresentation. It defines fraud as a scheme or artifice which uses the U.S. Mail to obtain money or property by means of false or fraudulent representations. |
An example of the conditional terms from an actual rebate form: (Please note: Not all rebate forms contain the same terms and conditions. Be sure to read the fine print on all rebate forms)
|Use of multiple addresses or P.O. boxes to obtain additional refunds is fraud and may result in prosecution. Multiple submissions will not be acknowledged or returned. This form must accompany your request. Reproduction, sale, trade or purchase of this form or proof of purchase is prohibited. Proof of purchase must be obtained from product purchased by you. No request from groups, clubs or organizations will be honored. |
Rebate Data Center:
A collaborative effort of the Postal Inspection Service and Joint Industry Rebate Fraud Task Force.
The RDC was formed for the purpose of compiling and analyzing data submitted to it by manufacturers and fulfillment houses concerning potentially fraudulent claims submitted in response to manufacturer rebate programs. The RDC collects data on suspicious submissions from a broad spectrum of the industry, combine the data, and then makes it available in computerized form to marketers and their fulfillment houses. They identify potential wrongful rebate submitters.
POSTAL INSPECTORS FOCUS EFFORTS TO PREVENT REBATE FRAUD
This general information has been provided as a courtesy to all and assumes no legal responsibility or liability.