This is an interesting story out of Cleveland. Sheryl Harris reports that law firms that handle debt collection cases are being scammed by a group out of Asia. The scam works, according to Harris, as follows:
“The pitch is simple: An Asian company says it’s seeking a law firm to collect delinquent accounts in the United States.
Once the parties sign a retainer agreement, the company forwards a check allegedly from a past-due account. It asks the law firm to process the check, since it’s handling all the company’s U.S. accounts.
After the firm deposits the check, it deducts its fee and wires the remainder to the Far East. Then the check is discovered to be counterfeit.
The firm is left on the hook to the bank for the money it spent from the account.
Wilson said law firms, including one in Northeast Ohio, have lost from $100,000 to $500,000 apiece in the scam.”
It is interesting that law firms who work on debt collection cases and have heard people claim all kinds of scams now get taken by a scam. Interestingly, this is similar to scams that plague consumers. Even Craigslist talks about a similar scam for consumers.
Especially during this holiday season, be careful and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!