CONSUMER PROTECTION – CONSUMER TIPS
1. In Canada, if you have won a prize there are no fees or taxes to be paid.
Consider it a sign of fraudulent activity if you or someone you know has received unsolicited emails, letters, or telephone calls asking you to pay taxes or fees on lottery or raffle or sweepstakes winnings or if you have been asked to provide personal information to claim a prize. SickKids Lottery has been advised that there are illegitimate calls being made to lottery supporters which involve victims receiving notification by post, phone, or email indicating they have won a prize (monetary or other valued item). The caller is advising victims that in order to collect the prize the victim is required to pay various fees or taxes in advance. Victims either never hear from the organization again or receive further requests for money.
2. Remember your lottery ticket purchases.
Challenge a caller who says you’ve won a prize to tell you which lottery, where and when you entered! By tracking your ticket purchases you will be more able to respond to any solicitations from outside parties. Advise the caller that you clearly did not buy one of their tickets or have never heard of the lottery game.
3. You may be dealing with a fraudulent situation, if:
- You did not register your name, address, email address, phone number, and a credit card before you were allowed to buy a ticket on an online lottery web site
- You do not live in the country and you are not a citizen of the country of that lottery
- You are asked to pay money up front for fees or taxes in order to release your “win”
- You are told you must reply within a given time or the money will be given to someone else
4. How to report a suspicious call:
- Your Local police department
- The Royal Canadian Mounted Police
- Your local postmaster or nearest Postal Inspector
You can also contact Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, a central agency that collects information on telemarketing complaints throughout Canada and relays this information to the appropriate enforcement agencies. You can contact Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 in Canada and the United States, or online at www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca.
Visit the Canada Revenue Agency at www.cra.gc.ca/myths for more information on protecting yourself from this and other types of fraud.