Charity Marketing Scams By InfoCision. Have you been the victim of deceptive charity marketing perpetuated by InfoCision and other telemarketers? InfoCision Management Corp. is hired to raise money by big-name charities, such as the American Diabetes Association, the American Cancer Society and the March of Dimes. It does so by phoning unsuspecting consumers and convincing them to send out pre-printed fund-raising letters to friends and family in a charity’s name. However, only a small part of the donations that result from these letter-mailing campaigns ever make it into the charity’s coffers. Instead, InfoCision keeps anywhere between 80 to 70 percent of the total donations raised through its deceptive charity marketing.
The consumer protection lawyers at Parker Waichman LLP are investigating these deceptive charity marketing scams, and are offering free lawsuit evaluations to any consumer who was induced to participate in a charity’s letter-mailing campaign by an InfoCision telemarketer. If you were misled about such a campaign by InfoCision or another telemarketer, we would like to hear from you. Please contact us as soon as possible to discuss filing a potential deceptive charity marketing lawsuit, so that we can put an end to these despicable charity scams.
Biggest American Charities Have Worked with InfoCision
According to a report published by Bloomberg Markets magazine, InfoCision Management Corp. holds, or has held, contracts with some of the biggest American charities, including:
- American Cancer Society
- American Diabetes Association
- American Heart Association
- American Lung Association
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
- March of Dimes Foundation
- National Multiple Sclerosis Society
When InfoCision telemarketers solicit consumers, they don’t ask for money. Instead, they ask an individual to stamp and mail pre-printed fundraising letters to their neighbors, usually around 15 at a time. When the calls come in, it’s the name of the charity that shows up on caller ID, and InfoCision’s telemarketers identify themselves as employees or volunteers of the nonprofit. As a result, many unsuspecting consumers generously agree to the task, trusting that any money raised via the letters go to the named charity. Unfortunately, that is far from the truth.
According to state regulators in North Carolina, only about 22 percent of the charitable donations InfoCision raised for the American Diabetes Association in 2011 went to charity, according to InfoCision’s only filing with the charity watchdog.
In fiscal year 2010, hundreds of thousands of generous volunteers helped InfoCision raise $5.3 million for the American Cancer Society, but not one penny of that went to cancer research, according to the society’s filing with the IRS. In fact, the American Cancer Society lost money on the deal, with 100% of donations going to InfoCision, plus more than $100,000 in fees paid to the company by the society. Overall, InfoCision brought in a total of $424.5 million for more than 30 nonprofit charities from 2007
to 2010, keeping $220.6 million, or 52 percent, Bloomberg Markets found. None of the charities that contract with InfoCision are in the dark about this deceptive charity marketing. In fact, according to Bloomberg Markets, the charities themselves encourage InfoCision to lie to consumers. According to scripts approved by both the American Diabetes Association and American Cancer Society for 2010 campaigns, InfoCision telemarketers are instructed to tell consumers who ask that 70 percent of any donations collected will be used for charitable purposes. But contracts for those campaigns acknowledge that both charities expected that InfoCision would keep more than 50 percent of all the funds it collected.
As the report points out, Americans trust charities, and even in tough economic times, give generously, having donated $298 billion in 2011 alone. And they give with confidence, trusting that their hard-earned money will go to the causes they care about. Experts interviewed by Bloomberg Marketing asserted that the activities InfoCision and its charity clients engage in are at the very least deceptive, and may even be considered criminal in some states.