One of those blanket-like garments with sleeves called a Snuggie might have kept you warm all winter and depending on where you purchased that product; it could give you some spring shopping money. If you happened to purchase one of those magical mesh doors marketed on TV, you might get a refund check as well, according to Fox Business News.
The checks are going out to the consumers who purchased the products marketed by Allstar Marketing Group, with the refund checks averaging $33.14 each. The Federal Trade Commission is mailing out more than 200,000 of these refund checks, with the funds coming from the 2015 settlement against the marketing company.
The settlement not only barred Allstar from making misleading claims when selling products, but they also imposed a $7.5 million judgment to be used for refunding money to the mislead customers. The company came under the scope of the FTC for allegedly using TV ads with the “buy-one-get-one-free” offers but failing to disclose all the costs involved in the sale for the consumer.
The FTC alleges that Allstar has been involved in this practice since at least 1999. The FTC found that the ordering process for the products was confusing and in some cases, the customer was charged more for the products than they intended to buy.
— ABC News (@ABC) March 16, 2018
So How Did This “Scam” Work?
Fox News refers to the TV ads from this marketing agency as an “ad scam.” You know the drill, it happens as you are watching one of your favorite shows, a commercial comes on, and across the TV screen, the Snuggie product is said to be available for “just $19.95.”
This price comes with the promise that the offer will be doubled. So now you are promised that you will receive two Snuggies for the price of one, or so they said. This should leave the cost of the product at “less than $10 each,” which is what was advertised. The TV ads never mentioned that a handling fee was applied to the tune of $7.95 for each product in the order. This brought the price up to $35.85, nearly doubling their original advertised price of $19.95.
You may not own a Snuggie, but it is almost impossible that you’ve never heard of one, as these products have been saturating the TV screen for years now. They come out with new colors and prints for the Snuggie, but it is the same design, basically a wearable blanket. According to ABC News, the “Snuggie has raked in millions, but now the company behind famous ‘as seen on TV’ fleece blanket is being forced to pay its customers $7.2 million back in refunds.”
These checks are not something coming in the far away future. According to ABC News, they will be mailed out this week. The average amount of each check is $33.14. Once you receive the check don’t put it aside and forget about cashing it for a while. The check will be rendered void if not cashed within 60 days of it being issued.
The Allstar Marketing Company released a statement via email to Fox Business News which includes the following few lines below.
“We are happy with the consumer protection work the FTC has done, and we have dramatically improved our communication with consumers since this occurrence. It is our mission to continue providing consumers with the most innovative products at the best prices.”