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Be aware of scams

Published: Tuesday, April 22, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

To the Editor:

Spring and severe weather season has arrived. A severe weather event typically brings out the best in our neighbors.

Unfortunately, natural disasters also can bring out the worst. Residents that experience storm damage should beware of a small fraction of unscrupulous contractors who attempt to take advantage of victims.

Illinois law protects consumers against those who would prey on them after natural disasters. Commonly known as The Storm Chaser Act, it provides protection to victims of storms.

To protect against becoming a victim of an unscrupulous contractor, the Illinois Insurance Association recommends:

• Consult immediately with your insurance agent.

• Work only with building contractors with whom you are familiar or who are recommended by your local Better Business Bureau or Chamber of Commerce.

• If you believe you have been approached by someone engaging in a deceptive practice, contact your county’s state’s attorney’s office.

If you have an elderly loved one who was victimized by the recent storms, take extra care to make sure they are not additionally victimized by an unscrupulous contractor.

Kevin J. Martin

Executive director, Illinois Insurance Association

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