The recognition and avoidance of grant scams and fraud
Foremost, there are never fees for submitting an application for a grant. You should never turn your credit card information over to one of these sites even if they promise that it is for age or other verification. Very often, these sites offer the ‘trial period’ for free but then follow up by charging unsuspecting people a fee of $99 (normally per month) after 48 hours.
Ways to avoid and recognize frauds or scams in grants
The Better Business Bureau has offered these suggestions and tips:
The government will not contact you to offer a grant
The government never contacts people to give them a money grant. When and if you do qualify for a grant the government will not request any payment for it.
Fees are not associated with the application for a government grant
Although typically you must provide financial information to prove your qualifications you never have to pay money in the application for a grant. Those who run scams frequently claim they will provide help and occasionally they may claim to be “federal government” employees. Do not be fooled by any scam that requests money.Government grants always involve application processes
If you have received a notice that you have been awarded a grant and you have not submitted an application it is a scam. Grant money is also never given over the phone in exchange for a fee. To qualify for a grant you have to apply for a specific opportunity you are qualified for.
Government grants are only awarded for explicit opportunities
Grants from the government are typically awarded to cities, states, educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and the funding of other research projects.
There is no charge for filing an application or requesting information about a government grant.
If you are asked for personal information (i.e. financial) to access any government information be extremely cautious. You can easily access free information concerning government grants or other benefits at grants.gov and benefits.gov.
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