Remember those old record, tape, and CD clubs that would send you a free music CD, and then start charging you month after month, whether you wanted them or not?
Most of those clubs are long gone, but as one woman learned, "free trials" that bill you month after month are still going strong.
Packages Keep Arriving...and Arriving
Gloristene Pounds has packages and packages of weight loss supplements she doesn't want.
But they keep coming to the woman's home, and even though she has refused delivery of some of them, they keep billing her credit card.
How much has this company charged her so far?
"Over $600, in just a few months," she said. And she worries there are more charges to come.
It all started when she saw a pop up ad for Garcinia Cambogia, a natural weight loss supplement that has soared in popularity every since Dr Oz talked about it on his show.
"It popped up and had all these great reviews," she said. "I read the reviews and the testimonials, and I was like, this seems OK."
So she ordered what was billed as a "30 day risk free trial."
She said all she had to do was give her credit card for the $4.99 shipping fee, "and let them know after 30 days if I want to continue."
Tries to Stop Free Trial
After trying it a few days however, she says "I started feeling really weird, like having chest pains, like heartburn."
She called her doctor, who told her to stop taking it. So she called the company.
But she says instead of closing her account, the phone agent proceeded to argue with her.
"He said have you thought about taking it with milk, maybe there's another way to take this. But I said I'm talking about $600 of charges on my card."
Despite her call, and request for cancelation, the packages kept arriving, along with repeated $90 charges on her credit card!
So we called and emailed the Utah-based company, which responded with an email saying if Pounds contacts them directly, and mentions our involvement, they will refund her money.
So she has now done that, and has her fingers crossed, vowing never to sign up for another "risk free" trial again.
How to Protect Yourself
We should point out that Dr Oz did not endorse this particular supplement selling company. But many sellers have been cashing in on his name ever since he talked about this supplement 2 years ago.
If you see any offer for a "free trial," read the fine print carefully.
And realize that if you give them your credit or debit card number, they may be able to continue billing you long after you want to cancel.
You may want to consider using a pre-paid debit card, so you don't waste your money.