Give With Your Heart to the Victims of Boston, But Be Smart

What happened at the Boston Marathon last week was horrific. And even though unfathomable, there are some people that will try to profit from this tragedy.  As the FTC warns, refrain from giving cash donations to unknown sources and consider these simple rules provided by the FTC when solicited in person, online or on the phone:
  • Ask for the name of the charity if contacted by phone and the telemarketer does not provide it promptly;
  • Ask what percentage of your donation will support the cause described in the solicitation;
  • Verify that the charity has authorized the solicitation;
  • Do not provide any credit card or bank information until you have reviewed all information from the charity and made the decision to donate; and
  • Ask for a receipt showing the amount of the contribution and stating that it is tax deductible.
 Giving to those in need should be encouraged.  Give from the heart, but be smart.

Scott R. Bialecki

Scott Bialecki, a former FTC attorney and IP litigator, is the co-Chair of Sheridan Ross P.C.'s Litigation Group.