Avoid false advertising and hidden disclaimers


Sometimes advertisements that claim a product will change your life--or the way you look--can be easy to buy into. But you do not want to fall victim to these ads, especially with holiday shopping under way. Some of them are over-hyped, which means they are trying to push something that does not do what it claims.

Though, it may seem tough to turn down a product that will help you look younger, lose weight, or have more energy. Consumer Reports says this is what you need to do before giving in...

Know what you are getting if you are buying from a business you do not typically use. Read the fine print, keep a copy, and for anything that is missing, be sure to get it in writing.

Find out what the "risk free" offers really entail. There may be things you have to pay for, like return shipping or automatic billing. Not all details are clearly disclosed.

Head over to the Better Business Bureau website to check out company reports, reviews, and any complaints.

Use a credit card for your purchases. It is easier to dispute a charge, whether it is an unauthorized purchase or misrepresentation. Be sure to have a copy of the advertisement so you can prove that it was misleading.

If you believe you have come across a deceptive ad, file a complaint with the FTC, Governor's Office of Consumer Protection, and the Better Business Bureau.

Copyright 2014 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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