Tracey Anton, Director, Marketing & Communications
Phone: 212-358-2828 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Susan Cuomo, Senior Manager, Information & Investigations
Phone: 212-358-2826 | Email: email@example.com
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 28, 2014
Complaints to BBB Point to Deceptive Work-At-Home Scheme in NYC
(New York, NY) - Better Business Bureau Serving Metropolitan New York is alerting the public to reports of a work-at-home envelope stuffing scheme claiming to be based in New York City.
In early June 2014, consumers began complaining to Metro NY BBB about mailed solicitations they received from Mason Grace Enterprises (Mason Grace) offering work-at-home opportunities. Consumers eager to earn extra income say these mailings offer earnings of up to $5,000 week for stuffing and mailing out envelopes. Metro NY BBB received six reportable complaints about this business in the past two months, and multiple inquiries from other BBBs nationwide, indicating the scope of this operation.
“Consumers should always be cautious when they receive work-at-home offers that seem to promise big paychecks for completing simple tasks,” said Claire Rosenzweig, President and CEO of the BBB Serving Metro New York. “Instead of making money, consumers in these situations frequently end up losing money, setting them back even further financially.”
Mason Grace mails solicitations to individuals with attractive income opportunities. The application form invites consumers to order the Mason Grace envelope-stuffing materials in various amounts, with labels such as “Income Group #1 (Earn $490).” The highest income group offer lures people with “Earn $5,000.” Although the claims in the mailer sound as though the consumer will get paid for stuffing envelopes, in fact, the consumer only gets paid for the letters mailed back to Mason Grace in response to the letters the consumer sends out. In addition, consumers are not reimbursed for the materials or postage unless Mason Grace receives response letters back.
Metro NY BBB believes much of the Mason Grace mailer is deceptive or misleading:
In several of its responses to complaints filed with BBB from consumers seeking refunds, Mason Grace cites the terms and conditions on its website at (http://www.masongraceenterprises.com/) as the reason for the refusal to refund consumers. These terms are complicated, convoluted, and appear to make it unlikely that a consumer will be able to obtain a refund. In addition, the terms and conditions for terminations and refunds published on the website are contained in a section titled “Business Opportunity Rule” and located in the middle of a 6,000-word document. In the same section is Mason Grace’s statement that results are not guaranteed, and that “it is possible to achieve no results even if method is implemented correctly.”
Mason Grace claims to be located at 100 Church Street, 8th Floor, New York, NY, 10007. To date, Mason Grace Enterprises is not registered as an active entity with the New York Department of State Division of Corporations. The domain for the website at is privately registered with GoDaddy as of June 18, 2014, for a one year period.
Metro NY BBB has reached out to this company on multiple occasions to obtain additional background information about the business. Mason Grace has not responded to those requests. In addition, BBB sent several inquiries about the potentially deceptive and misleading advertising in the mailing offers. The first notice about the advertising concerns sent to Mason Grace was acknowledged by Richard Charlton, Director, but his response failed to provide clarification or substantiation of issues. To date, Metro NY BBB has not received a response from the company to the second notice sent to Mason Grace.
Consumers who receive any solicitation offering employment as a work-at-home envelope stuffer are advised to be cautious. Before signing up for any work-at-home opportunity, job hunters are advised to:
For more advice on work-at-home offers see:
If you believe you have been a victim of a work-at-home scam you can file a complaint with the BBB at newyork.bbb.org or bbb.org. You may also file a complaint with Postal Inspectors online or call Postal Inspectors at 1-877-876-2455 (option 4, Mail Fraud).