How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Merlo Your Own Question

Merlo
Merlo, Accountant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 9783
Experience:  25+ years tax consulting. Specializing in returns for US citizens living abroad
9573734
Type Your Tax Question Here...
Merlo is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I RECEIVED A PHONE MESSAGE THAT I HAVE WON A CASH PRIZE FROM

Resolved Question:

I RECEIVED A PHONE MESSAGE THAT I HAVE WON A CASH PRIZE FROM A COMPANY IN UNIED KINGDOM.BUT I LIVE IN CANADA.I AM NOT SURE IT IS A SCAM OR NOT.PLEASE HELP ME!
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Merlo replied 5 years ago.
Hello Raymond,

Have they asked you to send any money to them, or have they asked you to pay any tax on this prize?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

HELLO MERLO, I AM SO GLAD TO MEET YOU ONLINE.NO,THEY HAVE NOT ASKED ME TO SEND ANY MONEY TO THEM OR THEY ASKED ME TO PAY ANY TAX ON THIS PRIZE.THE VERIFICATION DEPARTMENT OF THE COMPANY TOLD ME THAT MY WINNING CELLULAR PHONE NUMBER MADE ME TO BE A WINNER OF CASH PRIZE.THEY OFFER ME TWO OPTIONS.ONE IS GO TO UNITED KINGDOM'S OFFICE TO PICK UP A CERTIFIED CHEQUE AFTER BRINGING MY VALID I.D. AND MY PHONE INVOICE THAT SHOWING MY NAME ON IT.ADDITIONALLY,A LEGAL DOCUMENT FROM A UK HIGH COURT WHICH COST ME $410 POUNDS IN ORDER TO GET THE PRIZE MONEY.ANOTHER IS TO CONTACT BARRISTER TO BEHAVE MYSELF TO COLLECT THE PRIZE MONEY.THEY LEFT BARRISTER'S EMAIL ADDRESS TO CONTACT .I HAVE TO CLAIM THE PRIZE MONEY BEFORE MARCH 14,2009.I CAN PROVIDE MORE DETAIL IF YOU WANT.THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP!

Expert:  Merlo replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Raymond,

Unfortunately I hate to tell you that it does appear you have been a victim of a scam. There are thousands of these types of scams going around now, and every one of them will require you to pay money in some way in order to collect your prize. That in itself should be an immediate red flag that something is wrong.

If you only have until March 14th to claim this money, they are pretty safe in knowing that you are not going to actually make a trip to the UK on such short notice ... not to mention what such a trip would cost you.

If you paid the 410 pounds to the UK high court, you will never hear from them again. If you enlist the services of a barrister, he will also require a fee for his services, and again you would pay the money and never hear another word.

Any legitimate lottery or sweepstakes will gladly send you a check for the money that you have won with no strings attached. You may have to send them proof of your identity, but never any money.

If this was helpful please press the Accept button.

Thanks for using JA.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
HELLO AGAIN Merlo,I am a victim of scam.What should I do? Should I avoid to contact them ?Should I furthermore to report the scam to Canada Better Business Bureau and local police?I wish to stop the scam and the crime in order to let everyone in the world to know about it.At least I contribute and donate my kindness.In the near future,I am the rich man of the rich man.THANK YOU SO MUCH!
Expert:  Merlo replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Raymond,

It is very admirable of you to want to take the time to report this. If more people did that, there would be a lot less victims in the world.

Canada actually has an internet site called RECOL where you can report this type of activity. I am giving you a link to that site. You will have to register with the site, and then you can submit the information you have to them and it will be forwarded to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

http://canadaonline.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?zi=1/XJ&sdn=canadaonline&cdn=newsissues&tm=20&gps=22_67_1131_667&f=00&su=p649.3.336.ip_&tt=2&bt=0&bts=0&zu=https%3A//www.recol.ca/intro.aspx%3Flang%3Den

If this was helpful please press the Accept button. Positive feedback is also appreciated.

Thank you.


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Merlo,are you sure that I am a victim of SCAM?They provide me their website address and phone number.The company is very reputable in the world.I can reveal the name of the website to you.To confirm that it sound too good to be true because the prize money is so huge,it's 415,000 pounds!THANK YOU!
Expert:  Merlo replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Raymond,

No one here could be 100% certain that you are a victim of a scam. But I must tell you that we have had hundreds of customers come through this forum who have received the same or similar type news, saying they had won a prize. Many of them have lost money trying to collect that prize, and I would just hate to see the same thing happen to you.

If you are willing to risk paying 410 pounds to the UK high court to see if this is really a legitimate prize, then that must be a risk you are willing to take. I can just tell you that I personally would not do so, because I have seen too many of these scams that ask for the same thing.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Hello again Merlo,I agree with you.One more last thing,should I personally contact my Attorney(Lawyer in Canada) to review my situation?I want to miss this if this matter is true.I need your recommendation.THANK YOU!

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Melo,are you still online.I need your answer. I am going to be offline until tommorrow in order to get your message.Please respond me ASAP.THANK YOU.
Expert:  Merlo replied 5 years ago.
Hello again Raymond,

If you are really concerned that the offer you received might be true, then just to satisfy your own mind it would probably be worth your while to get a second opinion from someone else beside's this website. Contacting your attorney would certainly be one person who might have good advice for you in this situation.

Another thing you might try is to ask the people who have told you that you won this prize, where you should send the 410 pounds to get this legal document from the UK high court. See what payment information they give you and then do some investigation on the name of the person or company or bank where they tell you to send your payment. In fact, I would do that before even going to your attorney so that maybe he can investigate that for you.

If this was helpful please press the Accept button. Positive feedback is also appreciated.

Thank you.


Merlo, Accountant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 9783
Experience: 25+ years tax consulting. Specializing in returns for US citizens living abroad
Merlo and other Tax Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
< Last | Next >
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
  • I WON!!! I just wanted you to know that your original answer gave me the courage and confidence to go into yesterday's audit ready to fight. Bonnie Chesnee, SC
  • Great service. Answered my complex tax question in detail and provided a lot of additional useful information for my specific situation. John Minneapolis, MN
  • Excellent information, very quick reply. The experts really take the time to address your questions, it is well worth the fee, for the peace of mind they can provide you with. Orville Hesperia, California
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KU/KUMI95/2013-9-30_195031_kumar.64x64.jpg Wallstreet Esq.'s Avatar

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CU/Cuttinggirl/2011-10-29_03719_wcrop2.64x64.jpg Wendy Reed's Avatar

    Wendy Reed

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    3052
    15+ years tax preparation and tax advice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CATax/2009-08-04_204548_Mark.jpg Mark D's Avatar

    Mark D

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    985
    MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IN/insearchoftheanswer/2013-8-16_0233_attorney.64x64.jpg Richard's Avatar

    Richard

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3229
    29 years of experience as a tax, real estate, and business attorney.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MY/MyVirtualCPA/2012-7-5_44024_cookmegan1.64x64.jpg Megan C's Avatar

    Megan C

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    6121
    Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JG/jgordosea/2012-6-7_43138_GordosVeritas.64x64.jpg jgordosea's Avatar

    jgordosea

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    2783
    I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OZ/ozaukeecpa/2012-6-7_193219_Picture1croppedandshrunk.64x64.jpg MequonCPA's Avatar

    MequonCPA

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    2231
    CPA, Over 30 yrs experience w/individuals and small businesses. Masters in Tax.
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Tax Professional
Merlo
Merlo
9646 Satisfied Customers
25+ years tax consulting. Specializing in returns for US citizens living abroad