State Police: Beware of Scams After Severe Storms, Flooding

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Flooding Along the Muskegon RiverLANSING, Mich. (May 1, 2014) — The Michigan State Police issued a release Thursday cautioning those affected by severe storms and flooding to be alert for potential price gouging and charity scams.

“The State Emergency Operations Center urges residents affected by the April severe storms and flooding to be alert for scam artists using new and old tricks to obtain vital information or take advantage of disaster-weary survivors,” the release said.

Officials are warning people to be cautious of door-to-door solicitors who hand out flyers and “promise to speed up the insurance or contracting process.”

They are also warning residents to beware of people who ask for large cash deposits or advance payments for the work.  People are also advised to be careful when being solicited for those services by phone or email.

List of tips from Michigan State Police:

Ask to see state or local permits or licenses. Go to www.michigan.gov/bcclicense and www.michigan.gov/statelicensesearch to verify state license information.

Hire known and recommended repair companies.

Get at least two estimates from different companies.

Get all agreements in writing.

Make a full payment only when terms of the contract are met.

Gov. Rick Snyder declared a state of disaster in Newaygo and Osceola counties April 17 after severe flooding and other storm damage.

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