August 4, 2015

Consumer Protection Joins US Postal Inspection Service to Shut Down Company Mailing Deceptive Letters

Thanks to the combined efforts of the Office of Consumer Protection (OCP), the Better Business Bureau serving Greater Maryland (BBB) and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service-Washington Division, Maryland Property Review Board, a private company, was stopped from mailing deceptive letters soliciting Maryland homeowners to pay a fee to petition a review of their property taxes.

The letters, which gave the impression they came from the State, began reaching homeowners a month ago and advised recipients their property taxes were $1,346 higher than comparable homes and encouraged them to pay a filing fee of $99 to “reduce your Property Tax Bill.”

Because OCP and BBB representatives had received nearly 1,000 complaints from homeowners since the mailings began, they contacted the U.S. Postal Inspection Service-Washington Division. The Service immediately investigated the mail-drop location in Cockeysville, MD, identified the operators of the deceptive campaign and executed enforcement efforts to terminate the activity.

Read more in the news release.

Read other coverage from WTOP Radio and Bethesda Magazine.

For more information about OCP, or to check a merchant’s complaint record, call 240-777-3636 or visit www.montgomerycountymd.gov/consumer.

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