FTC Files Lawsuits Over Free Vacation Prize Scams

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has filed two lawsuits against companies that the FTC claims engaged in nationwide free vacation prize scams. These companies are alleged to have used Spanish language radio and TV advertising to offer vacation packages worth thousands of dollars. Consumers were asked to answer trivia questions in order to win the prizes. For example, consumers were asked to name famous Mexican comedians, or to name countries which are not spelled with the letter “A”. When listeners responded with the correct answers, they were told that their whole family would be “going to Disneyland!” According to the FTC, when the consumers called in to accept their prizes, the defendants would ask for a credit or debit card number. Accounts were charged with a fee up to $400. After the fee was charged, consumers were notified that they were ineligible or failed to meet previously undisclosed conditions or restrictions. The FTC alleges that consumers who attempted to complain or get a refund struggled to make contact with the defendant-companies or never received the promised refunds. A U.S. District Court in Florida has granted the FTC’s motion to halt the defendants’ business practices and freeze their assets pending further litigation.
The law firm of Balkan & Patterson, LLP was founded in 2006 and is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, at 601 S. Federal Highway, Suite 302, with offices in Broward County. Mr. Balkan and Mr. Patterson can be contacted at (561) 750-9191. Additional information about Balkan & Patterson, LLP may be obtained from the firm’s website at www.balkanpatterson.com.

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