Be Careful When Purchasing Products ‘As Seen on TV’

It happens to the best of us. We’ve all stayed up too late watching TV and gotten sucked into an infomercial. It’s not tough to be tempted to “call the number on your screen.” After all, that knife could be yours for just 11 payments of $69.99, and it can cut through a quarter!

Many of us are skeptical about infomercial products, and as it turns out, we’re right to be. The state of New Jersey’s Department of Consumer Affairs released a report this month detailing the findings of an investigation the department conducted into Telebrands, the company responsible for the “As Seen on TV” marketing concept.

According to a five-count civil suit filed by the state, Telebrands violated the Consumer Fraud Act by charging customers for purchases they did not intend to make, and by using deceptive pricing. Undercover state investigators purchased products from Telebrands, and discovered the company’s automated telephone system tried to coerce callers into buying additional items.

The company’s “money-back-guarantee” is also fraudulent, according to state investigators. When they attempted to return products, they would be placed on hold and then disconnected.

In the state’s civil suit, they ask Telebrands to pay restitution to affected shoppers, in addition to reimbursing the state for the cost of the investigation and lawsuit. The suit also says Telebrands should incur civil penalties.

In this case, the state of New Jersey looked out for its consumers. However, this investigation focused on only one “As Seen on TV” company of dozens. As a consumer, be wary when making purchases, particularly over the phone or online. If you have been deceived by a telephone sales company that you think may be in violation of the Consumer Fraud Act, contact an attorney right away.

The attorneys at Posternock Apell, PC are passionate about protecting your rights as a consumer. If you believe your consumer rights have been violated, contact our experienced lawyers today for skilled representation.