When choosing a mobility scooter for the first time, the selection and pricing can sometimes be a headache. You want the best deal from the best place for your money. It’s important to know what to look out for and who to talk to. Here at Factory Outlet Scooters we offer a safe and secure way to browse online with trained staff to help you with any concerns.
However, an increasingly worrying trend has started to appear over the last few years in which people have been conned out of money by Mobility Scooter Scams – disreputable people who sell unsafe products to unsuspecting customers. Stories of people who have been injured by incorrectly sold equipment are becoming an increasing concern.
A Worrying Trend
Stories have been reported to the Office Of Fair Trading in which older and disabled people have reported salesmen door stepping them in order to try and sell Mobility Scooters and/or other safety equipment. The OFT have said they have received many thousands of complaints on this matter. Reports suggest that customers have sometimes handed over hundreds or thousands of pounds and then the equipment has failed to show up, or have been provided but is of a substandard quality – and a danger to use.
Very often fraudsters will take on the identity of care workers/professionals or pretend they are from Social Services in order to gain details or money from people. In such cases it is pertinent to note that professionals such as these would never turn up unannounced (and would probably never try to sell you any form of consumer goods) and should always have some form of official ID with them.
In one particularly shocking case detailed here: mobility fraud a father and son have been convicted of extorting money from innocent parties who “bought” mobility products from them. The items failed to turn up and very often the customers were left distressed and in unsafe situations because of these fraudsters – sometimes needing treatment for the physical effects of stress, depression or requiring the care of alcohol rehab programs.
Other methods of fraud being used are competition leaflets being mailed out claiming the top prize will be a mobility scooter, or even the use of sales cold-calls made to people’s home telephones.
Research Is Important
It’s vitally important when making the choice to buy Mobility Equipment that you research every stage thoroughly. Choosing a specialised company such as ourselves to buy from means that you know you will be getting not only a good deal, but help at every stage of the process. Never be afraid to ask questions and seek out the right information that meets your requirements. Very often fraudsters targeting people in this way won’t have the right information to hand or will be vague and evasive when answering.
How Can I Protect Myself Against Mobility Fraudsters?
To help avoid becoming the victim of fraud, here are some very important tips for you to consider:
1.) Beware of anyone who come to your door, who approaches you on the street, cold calls you or maybe even visits you at a Day Centre offering to get you a free mobility scooter and/or other equipment. Legitimate providers such as ourselves do not engage in such behaviour.
2.) Some fraudsters may ask you to visit a Doctor or GP of their choice in order to “claim” your equipment. Avoid anyone who will not allow you to use your own Doctor and insists that you go to theirs. Again, legitimate companies will prefer to work with your own Doctor.
There are also some pertinent questions that you, as a mobility scooter customer can ask to keep yourself protected:
1.) How long has the provider been serving the community and how long have they been in business as a provider?
2.) Will they send or give you written literature to explain eligibility and costs?
3.) Do they ensure that customers are treated with dignity and respect at all times?
When purchasing equipment such as the scooters we provide it’s always worth asking for the help and advice of other users who have been through the buying process to find out how they got on and how the kept themselves safe when purchasing through the proper channels.