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RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 13891
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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I won a sweepstakes in Great Britian, the prize director

Customer Question

I won a sweepstakes in Great Britian, the prize director sends me a real cashiers check drawn from a real major bank, 5th 3rd Bank, as part payment of the larger prize and to also cover government taxes and clearance in Great Britian. The main customer service department for the bank, not a number provided with the sweepstakes but an official line of contact, verified the cashiers check was real and that it was paid. Should I wire the funds they sent me from the real check to cover the closing costs, as they have requested I should do to receive the larger winnings, or is this a scam? The cashiers check was authentic, not a fake, even verified by bank it was drawn.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for using Just Answer. I am a licensed attorney and look forward to helping you. I am reviewing your question and will reply back shortly.

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your patience.

Unfortunately, this is a scam. You cannot win a sweepstakes that you (likely) did not enter. You don't say how you were contacted, but real sweepstakes do not contact winners via email or Facebook or other social media means. You will be contacted by certified mail. I've also never seen an actual sweepstakes winner from the United States from a foreign sweepstakes, though I've seen plenty of these scams.

Most importantly, no real lottery or sweepstakes will require you to send money to collect your prize. Wiring funds is especially popular with criminals because the money cannot be traced once its sent. There is no way for the bank to verify that check as valid until it is processed. This is a common scam these criminals use -they'll tell you to cash the check because the banks are required by law to cash them. But by the time it is processed and bounces, the scammers have their money, and you're on the hook for the fees and value of the check. Plus, you'll never see your prize "winnings."

I wish I could tell you otherwise.

Please remember to kindly leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars, as that is the only way experts are paid for their time even though you may have already paid a deposit to the site. Follow-up questions asked in this thread do not cost anything additional after leaving a positive rating.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the advice. I was notified by certified mail about my winnings, but the company name is ***** ***** in any search database.
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

Did you actually enter this sweepstakes? As I said, we get a lot of questions on this site every day about lotteries and sweepstakes, and real ones don't ever need you to pay a fee.

What's the name of the sweepstakes?

Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.

If you have no further questions, I would appreciate if you would remember to click on the stars so that I am given a positive rating, as that is the only way I am compensated for my time and information. Thank you!