NASHVILLE, Tenn. — In light of the devastating tornadoes that hit Middle Tennessee, Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery III wants to remind Tennesseans not to fall victim to scammers looking to make a quick buck.
Slatery advises that you don’t fall for high-pressure sales tactics.
The attorney general said that it is a big red flag if you feel you are being pressured to donate.
Next, be cautious of any unknown out of state phone numbers calling you. If you know someone in Nashville who needs damaged fixed, make sure they’re hiring a contractor with a proper license. You can go to verify.tn.gov to see if you’re hiring a legitimate contractor.
The attorney general also warned of charity fraud, something that is very common during natural disasters.
First, look out for copy-cat charities. Scammers will sometimes use names that closely resemble legitimate organizations. Also, be wary of anyone asking for cash-only donations. Instead, use a check that is written out for the specific organization. Next, watch out for anyone calling you who refuses to give you the name of the organization you donate to or refuses to tell you how your money will be used. Lastly, look out if there is a lack of proof that your donation is tax-deductible.
If you plan to donate through the internet, make sure you’re donating to a site that is associated directly with the organization you’re donating too.
Make sure the website is also a secure website. You can do so by making sure it starts with HTTPS. If you’re still unsure if you’re donating to a reputable charity, you can check the Tennessee Division of Charitable Solicitations. There is a complete list of disaster recovery tips on the Tennessee government website. Some reputable organizations you can either volunteer with or donate to in Nashville include Hands-on Nashville, The Community Foundation, The Community Resource Center, United Way, and the Red Cross.
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