Sweepstakes, Publisher's Clearing House sad but true story of one woman's situation

Posted on Tuesday, May 22nd, 2001 at 12:00am CDT by 2aa2e874

Company: Sweepstakes, Publisher's Clearing House sad but true story of one woman's situation

Category: Other

Complaints.com ceived the following e-message on May 20, 2001:

From: Joan W. Musser [COMPLAINTS.COM_FORM_MAIL_26901#]

: Publisher's Clearing House

My husband and I wish to post a complaint about the business practices of

Publishers Clearing House.

The following is a sad but true story involving my widowed mother-in-law. As

with so many families today, we live over 1000 miles from her former

sidence in Delawa. Becoming concerned about her health and mental state

a special trip was taken to see her in her living environment rather than

having her visit us.

What was discoved was a woman who had been seduced by the possibility of

winning either money or a new card from Publishers Clearing House. During

the period of several years, nearly 1000 items had been purchased from PCH.

The items included CDs, videos and cassettes, none of which had ever been

opened. She did not own a cd or cassette player, nor did she have a VCR.

Other items included coins which she paid 500% mo than they sell for at the

local collector's sto.

Additionally, the victim was ceiving over 80

diffent magazine subscription with the majority of them being purchased

thought PCH. The subscriptions we can celled, but the only fund ceived

was $80. for a subscription to McCall's which did not expi until 2021, when

the victim would be 103 years old.

We documented with video, photos and with the investigators from the State of

Delawa the extent of the purchases, including all if the sweepstakes

entries posted on the frigerator and litted throughout the apartment. A

asonable estimate of purchases is approximately $50,000.

Numerous letters have been sent to PCH with documentation explaining the

situation, explaining that the person in question has Alzheimer's, and

questing a fund for merchandise turned to them (new only) based on

their policy of satisfaction guaranteed or your money back (no time limit was

given on the guarantee).

Of the merchandise turned to PCH, the only items

which they addssed whe those items that had not been paid for. However,

some of the items which they claimed we not paid for had indeed been paid

for and a copy of a cashier's check (the last of her certificates of deposit

cover). PCH kept the money and the merchandise.

As of this date, we have the merchandise still boxed as turned to us by

PCH. The State of Florida closed the class action suit befo we we awa

of the situation. We a still trying to secu a fund and we probably

have to pursue with a private attorney.


10 Comments

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572e2083, 2008-01-26, 03:08AM CST

we bought from pch too hubby and me 1st it was 1 item we could use then all 4 spots stuck finally i decided we'll send them in without buying but stick on everythhing they said, to them using first class stamps. an old lady at bingo said to me the big pize was suppose to go to macomb twp michigan where we live did you hear who got it? i said no and channel 4 is the channel i watch too. i think its a darn good business they have and gouge people scamming them.

72cfa910, 2008-03-02, 01:19AM CST

maybe you could check on mom more frequently???

22374b62, 2008-03-02, 10:31AM CST

Interesting story about the person in Macomb county Michigan. My wife thought that she was the big PCH winner here too? Aparently not. In fact NO ONE in Michigan has ever won a $10,000,000.00 prize from Publishers Clearing House, despite the fact that PCH led us to truly belive we had actually won! (flowers, balloons, cameras rolling, big check) the whole 9 yards! Sadly, I have a story I could tell about this myself from several years ago involving PCH, but when I think about, it's still too painful to talk about, even though many years have past since that time. All I can say right now is, "David Sayer, we're still waiting on you and the PCH van." Are you lost? Email us and we'll give you directions here again, and this time you can program it into your Garmin! In any case, we're still waiting on you to get here. (ps. we will hire private armed security personell to assist you with the brief case that's hand cuffed to your wrist.) So come ahead David, we're still ready and waiting for you, and have been for decades now! Hope you're still alive and well? I can still remember like it was just yesterday when my wife and I sit here all day and long and well into the night waiting on you to arive as you assued us you would! As punishing and horrifyingly heart breaking as that was, we are still nonetheless, witing on your arival. We haven't forgotten you, David Sayer, and we never will! On the same token, we hope you haven't forgotten us either? PCH, we do hope you're reading this!

f4b60190, 2008-03-11, 01:10PM CDT

My husband are going through the exact same thing in South Carolina. They have taken money from my mother in law for years. We only live 5 miles from her and have been involved with her life regularly. We just recently have become involved with her finances and have found 100's of checks written to them and her closets full of sorry products, and MANY magazine and book subscriptions. If she was ever late on a payment she received threatening letters intending to confuse her even further. I personally believe there is a special place in HELL for companies that victimize the elderly....and that is exactly where I hope you go.

b4edcdcc, 2008-03-22, 09:44PM CDT

yes prize partol and publisherb clearing house i dont have some to tell us that i have be on online for two years and have enter the sweepstake3 and then did make me payfor salt and peper shake but i got my money back because i did order that i just enter to win not buy they keep trying to make buy it it say bnot buy to win it dont make your chase btter that why and im one forth cherokee indian that shall get free and dont i got twoo orange eveploe in the mail and one white eveploes in the mail the real real mailand post office in salina kansas on jan3 2008 and the they said that i was in nner cricle and they try to get me to buy noway and then the email say your the winner that they were look for in the 101 winner cricle from publisher clearing house in port washtion new york 101 winner cricle this is Mrs Linda Harle And family from saila kansas

3c640365, 2008-04-25, 11:19PM CDT

I am going through the same problem with my Grandmother right now she has been wasting money for years on purchases from publisher clearing house and is now coming 86 years old she has been in the hospital for the past 2 months and the doctors are running tests on her mental state, i have the power of Attorney but until the doctors make the final call there is nothing i can do to. She has bills after bills from pch coming every week. I can't get a hold of anyone to cancel this stuff. If anyone has any suggestions?

bcd88ce0, 2008-07-31, 07:45PM CDT

So sad. Given the situation, it would be nice if they helped out, but maybe they feel it is the family's responsibility to recognize diminished capacity and takes steps to prevent this and maybe setting the house on fire before things get too far. For instance my brother budgets out my mom's money and gives her a hard copy and negotiated with her credit card companies to drop or forget her debt (small compared to most).

I can't believe you just found this out though, were you only just now concerned about her diminished capacity? I don't understand how this could be going on for several years without anyone figuring it out or seeing it. We made sure she moved close to them and they found a great older american apt complex near by.

For those older americans who just don't read and understand clearly: We need to educate our older americansu to understand that "you may have won" isn't the same as you have won. And what "a purchase won't help you win" really means. I've recognized htis since I was a kid and we received these in the mail back in the eightees, I understood the marketing gimmick to get you to open the envelope. No promise of a win was ever mmade. Its all in a grasp of the sublties of the english language and what may and have means.

The sad thing is, there are notices all over their site that state that purchasing will not help you win. Yet many will continue buying what they don't really want, despite the fact no gun is turned on them, just the thought that it will help them win.

In fact, there are many winners that have never purchased a magazine or anything else from PCH. I hope allof these people realize the every day "jackpots" they possess - family and friends - life!

I'm a sweeper, and before I enter any sweepstakes I make absolutely sure I read the rules and such. I make sure I understand everything and make sure I opt out of receiving - buying any subscriptions - unless I want them. If I do get them through mistake, I cancel them immeidiately before having to pay anything.

If my mom was buying all these magazines some of these people here are, I would protect her by canceling the subscriptions and letting her know they will not help her win! My mother may eventually have diminished mental capacity as well, as you fear from your mom, like you I will want to protect her too. I'm sorry this happened, if is our responsibility as family to make sure things don't go so far.

491b952f, 2008-08-23, 11:01AM CDT

I really dont beleive they are scamming anyone they are just making a living. I believe that if i ever won the publishers clearing house i would let the whole world kow that i won just so that they image of publishers clearinghouse would be cleared. I remember watching the commercial as a child and wanting to win it, it is just a dream and i still holding on to the dream. Furthermore, i have bought things from them and have received my product. Of course they are going to keep sending things ads for you to buy if i were in there sitution i would probably keep sending them just because someone bought off of me.

256a73f1, 2008-09-12, 08:43AM CDT

How else could they have all this money to give away? If you buy anything frompch you are contributing to the fund that pays the winners, If you don't buy anyting, your entries are probably shredded upon arrival. Their are so many stories of how people try to win this money, it is very wrong to take money from senior citizens who only order because they feel like they could win.If this is not a scam, you would post the odds,and proof that prize was recieved(othr than photos). My mother wasted a lot of time entering and jumping through hoops and is now in heaven, she finally has a part of paradise and it did'nt come from pch. Please remember that our treasures are in heaven. If you enjoy magazines, pch is a good way to buy them, but chances are there won't be many winners, if you don't, and you have the time to jump through the hoops and th postage, try, try, try, but realize that your adress is being shared(another way for pch to make money)Your adresses(and e-mail adresses will be "sold")God Bless you all.

Thomas F., 2012-11-21, 12:32PM CST

I will tell you that PCH is the bigest scam going.You will get notifications that you wom so much money and they give you a e-mail address.When you go to open up the e-mail address it is fake.Because my security system kickes it out as being not a secure site and it is not even in the USA it is in a forgin country.Then they send you to so many surveys from other companies that it is crazy.Don't fall into their trap.Change your e-mail address and unsubscribe them from your old e-mail address.

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