Some Companies Charge For Services You Can Easily Get For Free - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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NBC 5 Responds

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Some Companies Charge For Services You Can Easily Get For Free

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Some Companies Charge For Services You Can Get For Free

    Whether it's paying a tax bill or finding unclaimed money, before you pay someone to make it happen, get steps to do it for free from NBC 5 Responds. (Published Monday, Jan. 29, 2018)

    Marilyn and Ed Szafraniec couldn't help but give a letter they received in the mail a second look.

    $439 is owed to her and a lawyer offered to give it to her for just a 10 percent fee.

    "I've seen enough of these shows to see there are a lot of warning signs, the letterhead misspellings and all that. There didn't appear to be any of that, it did appear to be fairly legit," said Szafraniec.

    That's because it is.

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    Marilyn has more than $439 in unclaimed money that's rightfully hers.

    A simple search of the Texas Unclaimed Property website verifies it.

    It's the place companies send money they owe to you, when they can't find you.

    All you have to do is fill out a few forms on the state website and it’s yours, all of it, no 10% fee.

    Know this. These types of offers aren’t limited to cash recovery and they don’t just come in the mail.

    Emilio Corsetti typed in "Texas Registration" on his internet browser so he could renew.

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    "The first thing that popped up asked for my credit card which I thought was strange but I gave my credit card information and immediately after that, I got a message that said thanks for purchasing our guide," said Corsetti.

    Corsetti hadn't really gone to the Texas DMV but instead a site selling him instructions on how to renew that registration.

    These types of offers are out there from companies taking fees to help you do all sorts of things like forwarding your mail or paying taxes.

    They charge fees for something you can do yourself for free. It's not illegal, they typically have noticeable disclaimers that they’re not a government agency and simply a service.

    "Whether or not paying somebody to file on your behalf is a valuable service is for others to decide," said Corsetti.

    Marilyn Szafraniec is happy to have a little more clarity to make her choice.

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    (Published Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018)

    "It just sounds like money falling from the sky," she said.

    It was for her.

    NBC 5 Responds helped make it happen with no fee from our Consumer Investigative Center and that entire $439 dollars is headed her way.

    You can see if you have any cash headed your way from the Texas Unclaimed Property website by clicking HERE.

    If you have a consumer question, problem, or offer that seems too good to be true, call NBC 5 Responds at 844-573-7763.

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