I checked out a weight loss ad for acai berry, allegedly endorsed by Oprah, via a health article on MSN which led me to a "free trial", shipping cost only offer...$4.95. What a deal!
Within minutes I checked online banking to reconcile my account and saw a charge of $44.85. The next morning I called the bank to protest the charge and was told I had to wait until the charge went through before I could dispute it. I had to argue with the clerk to change my debit card # at that moment so no further charge could occur.
$44.85 was charged 2 days later, I was referred to the fraud dept. and told since I authorized the $4.95 and the acai website stated the terms on the site I had to wait 30 days after I returned the merchandise to the company. I was advised to call the company, cancel the order and get a confirmation number for that or there would be a problem with the company's time limit to cancel. Whew!! I'm already exhausted from telling this story.
By now I found the website I used for the order and printed copies because Nutraceuticals has so many different sites. I called the 888 #, the recording said the wait would be "60 minutes, 54 seconds"; I put the phone on speaker and waited it out.
68 minutes later a clerk "Kevin, no last name,#9101" answered. He spoke quickly, rudely, overrode me but accused me of overriding him, refused to give me a # confirming the call, and stated there was nothing he could do; I had to follow the "rules" to cancel and get a refund; the rules were that the time limit didn't start until I returned the package, that the rules were inside the package so I had to open it to find that out because he couldn't tell me. This is in direct conflict with the terms printed at the bottom of the secure order form page which state: "return the unopened package".
I called the Wells Fargo fraud section back to report how the phone call went and was rudely told that they couldn't do a thing for me until 30 days after I returned the goods, because the terms were printed on the website....they knew that because they were looking at it! Then I carefully checked the web pages I copied; the site I used had a loooong first page with Oprah's picture and several testimonials, but no terms. You fill in the name and address section and go to the "secure order form" page, stopping directly at the "payment details" where you type in your card, #, etc. and the "RUSH MY ORDER" button. The order is complete; you're finished. The terms are at the bottom of that page and you never get there!
I'm convinced the bank was looking at a different website from the one I used. I plan to re-contact the bank because I believe it was fraud and I tried to cancel even before the charge went through. It's hard to believe that the $44.85 was pending for 3 days and I wasn't allowed to stop-payment.
Way back when I was on the 68 minute hold, I filled the time with composing letters. I sent a letter to Nutraceuticals, an email, and used the contact form on the website to cancel and get a refund just as they noted in their terms at the bottom of the secure order form page. I sent copies and complaints to the FTC, the Arizona Attorney General's office, Oprah, Wells-Fargo and the BBB. What else can I do?
I accidentally stumbled upon "Fox 11 Investigates Bank Account Scams" and discovered two interesting things: Your Rip-Off Report site, and that there are weight loss ads that lead to acai websites taking us to the free trial scams posted DIRECTLY BELOW THE FOX 11 VIDEOS!!
I am delighted to find that your site exists. Someone has to put a stop to those scams; think of the bizillions of people being cheated by that. I checked out numerous weight loss ads and every one of them led me to the Nutraceutical free trial offers. Of course the biggest surprise was the ads right below the videos exposing the scams!! I'm hoping you have the connections to do something about it.
I'm so outraged by this that I'm determined to DO something; this has been a full time job for me for 2 days now and I want to get these guys! I'm 74 years old living on a modest social security check and they snatched $44.85 of the $55 I had to last the rest of the month, but this goes waaaay beyond me personally; it's obvious they're exploiting a lot of people.
Castle Rock, Colorado