Rebate Fraud

This seems to happen all to often, it’s rare you don’t get scammed with “rebates”. Samsung offered $50 rebate on certain LCD displays purchased between March 1, and April 30 2005. Mail in the rebate by May 31, 2005 with the UPC, receipt, etc. and you’ll collect.

Sent on 4/29 (according to Samsung). Card in the mail a few weeks later:

“Submission was postmarked after offer end date”.

Not that I didn’t expect this. There’s no such thing as just mail in something and get a check. You know they will reject it the first time around. So I called, they eventually checked my status… and oops, an “error” occured. We’ll put that back in que. Still no guarantee that it will go through, but at least I passed stage 1.

They figure if 25% give up after the first time, that’s 25% of rebates they don’t have to give out. Then figure in how many won’t even bother. That’s significant savings.

I really wish rebates were outlawed. Give the sales break up front. This is just wasting people’s time.

[/end rant]

23 thoughts on “Rebate Fraud

  1. Rebates would only go away if near 100% people didn’t give up and got the rebate. Thus it would be cheaper for the company just to give the sales break up front.

  2. I freaking hate rebates. I read somewhere that over 80% of rebates are paid out. I don’t believe that. I have a whole rant of my own on my blog on the exact same topic.

    Me

  3. I bought an LCD in Dec 2004 and mailed in both rebates. I received the Best Buy rebate but am still being put on hold by Samsung. They turned down my rebate for “no zip”. They said the check was sent back to them. My friend bought the same screen and they misspelled her name so incorrectly it was uncashable. She sent the check back and hasn’t seen a penny. My mother in law bought a screen and they said the original UPC wasn’t sent. I have been directed to the Attorney General’s Office. I indicated to Samsung that I intend to take this matter up with the AG. Anybody even remotely thinking about a Samsung should think twice. Just out of principle.

  4. I think Fry’s Wholesale should also be reported to whatever Federal consumer agency can stop this fraudulent activity.
    I opened up a new office and needed some monitors. I found some at Fry’s that had a 100 rebate. My friends and family purchased one of these monitors, so we would be in compliance with the program.
    However, After you purchase one of these items and pay for it, you are then given a rebate form that says only 1 per household. That voided my husband’s because I purchased one also. Why is it not posted when you are purchasing one of these items, the truth about the rebates.
    And then to make it worse, everyone sent in the detail as required, and it has been not quite 4 months. I keep going online to
    http://www.panacer.com to check the status of my rebate and it just says.. Received, please check back… Why am I supposed to check back? It has been saying this for over 30 days. Why are they allowed to use my money. IT IS FRAUDULENT TO DENY A REBATE FOR A REASON THAT IS NOT POSTED IN ADVANCE OF THE PURCHASE.
    THIS HAS BECOME MY MISSION. PERHAPS IT IS A VIOLATION OF THE CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT. I WILL FIND OUT AND FRY MAY RE-CONSIDER THEIR REBATE RUNAROUND.
    CLAUDIA SHUGART

  5. Has anyone ever considered bringing a law suit because of these rebate practices? I have had the same runaround described in other reponses but nobody seems to do anything about it.

  6. I’ve always received my rebates without a problem. That changed when I bought a Samsung product. They said I never sent in the UPC / SN for my SyncMaster 204B. It’s worth $50 and I’ve contacted their “support” center with no Luck. So now I’ve used another stamp and my time to send in the required copies (thankfully I made copies) to the scam artists.

    I am going to be very careful when purchasing a Samsung product again and will certainly not consider the “after rebate price” of any Samsung product. My thought is the rebate system is a scam and laws should be put in place to protect consumers (or make it illegal to offer rebates).

  7. I purchased a printer on 06/13/06 from an Officer Depot and I had to fill out 2 rebate forms to get total of $100 check, one for $25 and the other one for $75. On 07/01/06, 08/07/06 and 08/16/ 06, I received e-mails stating that “you will receive another email when we have shipped your check?. So, I’ve been waiting for my rebate checks to come and I forgot about the whole thing. Today on 04/02/07, I was going through my old paper works and found out that I never received any rebate checks from Office Depot’s rebate center. I contacted the rebate center and spoke with a customer service lady but she replied to me that I was too late for the call and there is nothing she could do for me. Why is that too late for my rebate checks? I just want my rebates that were promised to me when I purchased my printer. Why does that matter how I made a late call to get my rebate checks. I did follow all of the instructions and used my money to send out those rebate forms in the mail. After all it is my money, isn’t it? I hope this is not a scam so they don’t have to pay people. I am really hoping that, that is not the case. I also spoke with Mr. Patrick (supervisor) his ID# 53812 and I could not understand what in the hell he was trying to say to me at all. Actually, He made me more upset, lol… I e-mail this matter to their customer service, so I guess I have to wait and see what they are going to do. Damn, I hate waiting for rebate checks because I will forget about it. I think that the Best Buy is going the right direction with getting away with rebate BS. By the way I filed a complain on Federal Trade Commission’s web site and also Ripoffreport.com.

  8. I have a receipt dated March 29 from Tiger Direct for a Samsung Syncmaster 244T Monitor. I mailed in the UPC and the barcode requested, checking carefully that I was following their protocol. I just received a card (it is now June 14, about 2 months later) claiming that I did not include the UPC and the serial number barcode. As the instructions on the website say that one must send the original information from the box, I cannot resubmit the “Original/Valid Items” as their card suggests I do. For anyone who cares to, a supervisor at Samsung gave me a mailing address reserved (apparently) for angry people like us: It is Special Handling, PO Box 7004, Young America, MN 55558-700

    But life is short.

    If anyone reading this is an attorney and is inspired to move on this, perhaps enlisting the media or the Better Business Bureau, I’m always up for a righteous fight. I think this would be more productive than being worn down by the corporate foot-soldiers at Samsung, who cannot even provide me with an address for the parent company.

    Clark Suprynowicz
    1723 Stuart St.
    Berkeley, Ca. 94703

    clark@famousbrandmusic.com

  9. I purchased a Samsung Monitor 940BW from Circuit City in Merritt Island Florida, on December 31, 2006. I was told this Monitor had a rebate. I mailed all required information for this rebate twice. I have call numerous times since February. I get the same reply wait 4 weeks for my rebate. I was told for sure I would receive my rebate by June 25th. If not I was told to call and ask for Paul. I called June 25th and I was told again wait 4 weeks for my rebate. Is this the normal way Samsung refunds their customer when they are promoting a rebate offer?

  10. Another of the rebate scammers. O purchased their PCcillin product at Office Depot. There were two rebates. One was a competitive upgrade, the other a simple rebate. They were designed to work together (not valid with any other rebate except xxxx). Both were submitted. Three months pass. Four. Five. I check the rebate site. Both were “never received.? I call the rebate company. Yes they were received, but could not be used together. I pointed out the fact that were wrong and the forms clearls stated they could be used together. “sorry, we’ll process them…?

    Two months later the competitive upgrade check arrives. Back to calling. They refuse to honor the retail purchase rebate for the same previously given (false) reason. I like the product, hate the rebate scam. I have to renew the anti-virus subscription in a couple of months. At $49!? Nope. Found the product, new, on eBay for $10 – for 3 PC’s. Why renew? Screw ‘em.

  11. Symantec: Never honored 5 out of 7 rebates. Their policy – this is the truth – if it’s lost in processing or the mailroom, it’s considered lost in the mail!

    eXtreme Memory: Stalled and denied rebates of Compact flash cards to myself, a friend, and my partner. Finally sent the rebates after 13 months of complaining. One check bounced because it was “stale”, and the other two were $15 instead of $35!

    Scanport: Received a 19″ LCD as a gift. I processed the $100 rebate personally and sent it overnight mail. They denied receiving it, even though I had a signature and delivery confirmation. I had it insured and filed a claim. They told the post office they received it. Claim denied. Sent that “we received it” notice to Scanport. “sorry, that rebate has expired…”

  12. I have been a PPL (Pre-Paid Legal)ember for two years. I got a letter back from Young America (the people Alltel does their rebates through) denying my claim because the UPC was not included. (I TAPED IT TO THE FORM!!) I used my lawyers to send a “nice” letter to Young America. In 2 and a half weeks I had my cheque.

  13. Samsung just did the same thing to us except they claimed we didn’t put the bar code in the rebate submission. This is absolutely not true and two people actually saw me mail the rebate request with the bar code in it. Samsung just lost a customer for life and I plan on contacting the better business bureau.

  14. Would you please put a stop to this so future consumers are spared what I and many others are going through!

    Like the Law-firm Keefe and Bartels (Legal Investigation of Rebate Scams, Rebate Fraud and Rebate Schemes of CompUSA and other electronics dealers puts it:
    The New Jersey-based Samsung Electronics America, Inc. has embarked with Circuit City and other Electronics retailers to lure consumers into buying with high rebates which are immediately denied even though all required items are full-filled and on time. Many consumers are forced to make countless phone-calls that lead nowhere and complaint letters that are refused by Samsung! As a result many give up and are cheated out of their rebate moneys. The N.J. BBB has Samsung on their unsatisfactory list with over 500 complaints on file! If you search: “The Samsung rebate mess” it will show how widespread this (what I call) false advertising/rebate fraud is! In my case, keeping impeccable records: copies of the advertised item by Circuit City, send in (on time) rebate, refusal card, unanswered complaint letters to Circuit City and Samsung, and letters to the N.J. BBB, the FTC, and the N.Y. and N.J. Attorney General prove without a doubt that I am entitled to this rebate.
    That this scam, is going strong right now and nobody puts a stop to it is unthinkable to me! Please protect future consumers from this!

  15. I’ve been a victim to the same “we got the UPC but it didn’t have the barcode” scam that others have complained about. Samsung is ******** hundreds of people around. The 2 different customer service reps. I spoke with want me to fax my information again, but it supposedly takes “about” 3 weeks to “process” the fax. Of course, they refused to tell me who their manager was. In the meantime, I’m sure the rebate will expire. This infuriates me, and it’s all over a lousy $40 rebate for a nice monitor (Samsung 932gw). I’ll be calling the Indiana BBB tomorrow to see what my next course of action should be. There ought to be a class-action suit to end this madness!

  16. I just received the reponse below from eagletech regarding the status of my 100.00 rebate for the Viper case I purchased from the newegg website.

    I was warned from friends that Eagle-Tech has a reputation for not honoring their rebates, and will flat out lie about someone not providing enough information when sending in the rebate form so they would not have to honor it.

    On 7/14/2007 I sent in all of the required information (within the specified 14 day period), *exactly* as the rebate form indicated, with my newegg receipt, mail-in rebate form, and original UPC. I also made triplicate copies of everything I sent, *and* sent the letter certified.

    True to form, as you can see below, they stated that I’m missing my sales invoice, in hopes that I will simply give up, and wait another 12 weeks for them to not honor the rebate.

    > From: rebate@eagle-techusa.com
    > To:
    > Subject: RE: Status of rebate
    > Date: Tue, 13 Nov 2007 18:51:57 -0800
    >
    > Dear Customer:
    >
    > We have received your rebate mail on 07/16/07.
    >
    > Rebate: Received
    >
    > Status: Declined
    >
    > Reason: Missing Sales Invoice
    >
    > (The mail-in letter is only the “processing page”)
    >
    > If you would, I could do you a one time favor by re-submit your rebate to
    > our rebate process center again.
    >
    > In order to do that, I need your INVOICE PAGE first. And please understand
    > by re-submit your rebate; the process time takes 12 weeks.
    >
    > Here are the instructions of how to get the invoice # from Newegg:
    >
    > 7. You have to login to your account, by entering your email address
    > and password.
    > 8. After login, click “Go To My Account.”
    > 9. Then you click the second option, “Order History/Print History.”
    > 10. Then you select the invoice number.
    > 11. Then click on Printer.
    > 12. After following the steps that will take you into the invoice.
    >
    > Thank you,
    >
    > Rebate Dept.

    Do not do business with this shady company.

  17. Just got the “Submission did not include an original UPC” notice from a Samsung purchase. I know I put it in, actually I wrapped the rebate form around the UPC. Fortunately I kept copies.

    By the comments from others it is obvious this is a means of creating “breakage” to increase Samsung’s bottom line. After asking to speak to a supervisor I was redirected and the phone rang for over 5 minutes and was never answered. I will be contacting the El Paso BBB on Monday and the Texas State AG.

    I wanted to email a PDF copy of the UPC in order to save the postage and I was told that is not possible.

    If I buy Samsung products every again I will not plan on receiving the rebate.

    K

  18. Called Samsung after 4 weeks of not hearing nothing about my rebate for a digital frame. They said it takes 4 to 6 weeks. Called back after 7 weeks they said they never recieved it. Told me call back in 2 hours to get new adress for resubmitting a rebate. Never will buy anything with a rebate again.

  19. Samsung denied 2 of my rebate requests also, claiming I did not submit proper paperwork (missing serial number and UPS) although these were taped to the rebate forms. I called them and they still deny they have the originals. Don’t buy from Samsung if you expect a rebate. Make sure to file claims with the FTC, the BBB of El Paso and the Texas Attorney General and your local state attorney General. This practice must be stopped!

  20. I’m suppose to get a rebate for a razer phone I got at alltel. I get apostcard from alltell saying I didn’t send in a copy of the receit, which I did. The local office where I got the phone faxed in a copy with anote saying to send the rebate asap, but someone I doubt they ever will. I should just get a lawyer to get out of my contract for without paying the 200 dollar fee, as I’m sure I can find an add saying sign up for 2 years and get a free razer. And without the rebate it isn’t free. I’d rather pay a lawyer 500 dollars than to pay alltel another cent if they can’t honor the rebate.

  21. My experience with Samsung rebate has been similar and frustrating.
    I purchased the Samsung monitor with a promised $40 rebate. The following day, I mailed the UPC, the receipt and the serial number which was on the UPC After waiting 6 weeks, I got a card saying I hadn’t sent in these items. I called and spoke to “Carole? who told me to fax the documents. I had photocopied them, so I was able to resend them. I faxed them and also sent by ordinary mail. Four weeks later, I spoke to “Charlie? who said there was no record of having received them. I have been through the same drill with “Gayla? and “Georgia.? Gayla gave me a new number to call for customer service, which was “Georgia?. I asked her to look at the faxes I had sent. She said they were in a different department, so she couldn’t look at them. I asked to be transferred to that department. She said she couldn’t do that.

    I have now faxed the information to them 14 times, without success. I have contacted the Attorney General of Maryland, and we will see if he has more luck than I.

    May 27, 2008

  22. The only rebate I know I can trust is att’s online cell phone rebate. They do send it in multiple annoying as hell to use debit cards but at least they send it.

  23. yeah, i’m going through the same thing right now, me and my sister. I bet they have come up with 4 excuses. I called over a wk ago, and they say, “oh it went out today”, still nothing….and my sister hasn’t gotten hers back either. It’s been atleast 4 months.I swear i will hound the **** out of them till they send it. I will never go through this again, never!!! I’m telling you guys, it’s all a scam. They want your money, but don’t want to give you back what is owed.

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