I have received a couple referrals over the last few months which ended up being some sketchy people. No, not the Bridezilla or Groomzillas everyone asks me about, just some gool ol’ frauds.
I am always weary of inquiries I receive that lack simple yet pertinent information like where a couple would like to get married or what color scheme they like or how many guests or even just their budget. The few I have received are usually from a ‘doctor’ or ‘mister’ somebody asking for a planner to take care of specific details (confirming vendors, venues, and menus) – things I would already support a couple with – then ask to tell them how much it will cost total. They would then send me contact information for some random person and require all communication go through them, oh but wait you pay for everything and request a reimbursement from that contact person, making sure to take out your fee plus a great bonus. What?!!?
Not sure about you, but that’s just not how I do business.
Turns out, a couple of my wonderful vendors have also received these ridiculous inquiries. Fortunately none have fallen for it. Most inquiries are of ‘couples’ planning a destination wedding in the states and will pay you however much it takes for your service requiring you to withdraw funds (with your credit card of course) for the total event budget and give whatever additional amount back to the contact person…leaving their reimbursement check to bounce with no hope of recovery.
GigSalad has a list of ‘caution items’ to look out for when dealing with potential clients.
Take heed and be careful out there!
Please beware of fraudulent inquiries
Use extra caution when dealing with requests which contain any of the following:
- Requests that you contact the client by email only;
- Requests made that do not apply to the services you offer;
- Messages from event planners outside North America;
- Emails with exceptionally poor grammar;
- Event planners who ask to pay you up front with a large amount and request a check from you for the difference;
- Inquiries with invalid phone number;
- Inquiries with missing data such as the Event Location.
A simple test is to call the phone number they provide. If it’s a generic answering system, a disconnected number, a wrong number, or if there’s no number at all, be VERY cautious.