BBB alerts Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky auto dealers to the business practices of R & K Wholesale & Distribution, located in Madisonville, Kentucky.
BBB has received a pattern of complaint from auto dealers alleging R & K Wholesale & Distribution is sending unauthorized invoices ranging from $139.95 to $207.00 for a 2008-2009 OSHA-EPA safety training DVD. Complainants state the dealership did not order the DVD, nor did they receive it. Most complaints remain unanswered and unresolved. [CLICK HERE to see example]
The U.S. Postal Service requires solicitations that look like invoices, bills, or account statements to carry one of the following notices: THIS IS NOT A BILL. THIS IS A SOLICITATION. YOU ARE UNDER NO OBLIGATION TO PAY THE AMOUNT STATED ABOVE UNLESS YOU ACCEPT THIS OFFER, or THIS IS A SOLICITATION FOR AN ORDER OF GOODS OR SERVICES, OR BOTH, AND NOT A BILL, INVOICE OR STATEMENT OF ACCOUNT DUE. YOU ARE UNDER NO OBLIGATION TO MAKE ANY PAYMENTS ON ACCOUNT OF THIS OFFER UNLESS YOU ACCEPT THIS OFFER. Copies of R & K invoices on file with BBB do not contain the required language indicating the offer is a solicitation. For a complete BBB Reliability Report on R & K Wholesale & Distribution please visit www.BBB.org
One of the most common variations of the phony invoice scheme is issuing solicitations disguised as invoices. These documents, which are actually solicitations for the purchase of goods or services, are carefully designed to look like legitimate invoices for goods or services ordered and received. In some cases, the small print may identify the bogus bill as a solicitation. The business that pays a solicitation disguised as an invoice may receive the merchandise or service it was duped into ordering; more often, it will not, and efforts to trace the fraudulent firm that issued the "invoice" may prove futile.
BBB offers the following general advice to protect your business from phony invoice scams:
- Channel all invoices through one person or department in your company
- Check all invoices against purchase orders and against goods or services received. Make certain that order numbers correspond with the invoices.
- Verify all invoices with the person who gave written or verbal authorization.
- If you receive a phony invoice or a solicitation disguised as an invoice, report the matter to the Better Business Bureau and U. S. Postal Service.