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Better Business Bureau ®
Start With Trust®
St. Louis, MO
BBB Accreditation Agreement

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You apply for accreditation by the Better Business Bureau (“BBB”) and agree to abide by the terms and conditions set forth below. You understand that this agreement is not effective until accepted by BBB.  You agree you will notify BBB if you merge, get acquired or consolidate with another business and acknowledge that any resulting new business must re-qualify for BBB accreditation.

  1. Compliance with BBB Code of Business Practices (BBB Accreditation Standards)
    You agree you have read (see inside) and understand the BBB Code of Business Practices and certify that you meet the standards set out in the Code. You agree to comply with the Code, as it may be amended by BBB. The then current Code shall apply to you for the duration of accreditation.
  2. Authorization to Use BBB Trademarks
    1. Permission to advertise BBB Accreditation. During the term of this agreement, BBB grants you a nonexclusive, non-assignable and nontransferable license to advertise your BBB accreditation only as set out in this agreement. You agree that BBB trademarks may not be otherwise used, copied, reproduced, or altered in any manner.
    2. Use of Accreditation Plaques and Decals. You may display the BBB plaque and decal at your place of business and at trade shows.  You may also display a decal on your business owned vehicles.
    3. Use of BBB Seal. You may, within the scope of permission granted below, advertise your BBB accreditation by using the BBB Accredited Business seal (“the seal” is available in electronic or camera-ready copy format by contacting the BBB at 314-584-6737 or executive.assistant@stlouisbbb.org), as it may be modified by BBB. BBB will provide the seal in various sizes to you. You must receive prior written permission to use another size, and approval will not be granted unless the new size meets minimum height requirement for “BBB” of 1/8 inches tall. Nothing in this agreement or in your use of the seal or BBB name will give you any right whatsoever in the BBB name or seal, or in similar names or seals, beyond the right granted in this agreement.
    4. Scope of Permission.
      1. i. Traditional advertising media. You may state “BBB Accredited Business” or  you may display the seal in the following media: newspapers, periodicals, billboards, posters, direct mail, flyers, yellow pages or other directory advertising, telephone, TV or radio spots, business cards, stationery, invoices, facsimile cover sheets and other business documents.  If all your physical locations are within this BBB’s service area, you may advertise your accreditation wherever you do business.  If you have physical locations in other BBBs’ service areas, your advertising rights are restricted to this BBB’s service area unless permitted by agreement(s) with other BBBs.
      2. ii. Online advertising. You also may choose to display the BBB’s online seal to identify your BBB accreditation on your Web site and on Web sites where you advertise so long as the seal clicks to a confirmation page and your BBB Reliability Report. You must use the then in effect seal to allow consumers to verify BBB accreditation.
      3. iii. You may also display the seal, with a hyperlink to your BBB Business Review, as part of your signature block in business emails. 
  1. Termination/Suspension
    1. By BBB. BBB may suspend and/or terminate this agreement at any time if you violate the terms of this agreement or if the trademarks licensed herein are invalidated or cancelled. If this agreement is suspended or terminated, you agree to immediately cease using the seal and/or BBB trademarks.  If suspended, you may request review of the suspension under applicable procedures set forth in our Bylaws.  Unless the suspension is set aside following a review, suspension will become final and this agreement will be terminated.
    2. By You.  You may terminate this agreement on thirty (30) days written notice to us.
    3. Following termination, you agree to immediately stop using BBB trademarks in all media, to immediately destroy any materials bearing BBB trademarks, to remove BBB plaque and decals from display, and to remove all online identification of affiliation with BBB.
  2. Fees
    You agree to pay fees as set by the BBB’s Board. A copy of the current fee schedule is available at this link. All fees shall be deemed fully earned once paid and shall be non-refundable.
  3. Term
    The term of this agreement begins when accepted by BBB and continues unless terminated by either party or for your failure to pay annual fees.
  4. Indemnification
    You agree to indemnify and hold BBB, Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc. (as trademark owner on behalf of the BBB system) and their employees/officers/directors (collectively “CBBB”) harmless against any loss, damage or expense (whether direct, indirect or consequential), including reasonable attorney’s fees, arising out of any misuse of BBB trademarks or of any violation of the terms and conditions of this agreement.  You also agree to indemnify and hold BBB and CBBB harmless against any loss, damage or expense, including reasonable attorney’s fees, with respect to all third party claims of any kind, including product liability, arising in connection with your product(s) and/or service(s).
  5. Limitation of Liability
    You agree you will not sue for monetary damages on any matter concerning this agreement. BBB makes no representations, warranties, or covenants of any kind, either expressed or implied, regarding title to or ownership of any rights in any marks, validity of any marks, the right to license any marks or non-infringement of the rights of others in any marks.
  6. Relationship of Parties
    1. You are not and will not represent yourself as an agent, representative, partner, subsidiary, joint venture, or employee of BBB, nor can you represent that you have any authority to bind or obligate BBB in any manner or in any thing. You shall not challenge the rights of BBB in and to its trademarks, or take any action inconsistent with such rights.
    2. Nothing in this agreement or in your use of BBB trademarks shall confer any endorsement or approval of your products or services. Your use of these marks is intended only to convey BBB accreditation and a commitment to abide by the Code, and you agree to only use BBB marks in such a manner.
    3. You acknowledge that the BBB from time-to-time may send you by way of fax or electronic-mail notices and other materials promoting and/or advertising various programs, seminars or events organized by the BBB, and the attendance at such program, seminar or event may require payment of a fee or fees.

I accept the terms of this agreement:

Firm________________________________________________________________Name & Title of Authorized Representative__________________________________ Address__________________________ City_____________ State___ Zip _______

 

BBB Code of Business Practices (BBB Accreditation Standards)

 

The BBB Code of Business Practices represents sound advertising, selling and customer service practices that enhance customer trust and confidence in business. The Code is built on the BBB Standards for Trust, eight principles that summarize important elements of creating and maintaining trust in business. This Code also represents standards for business accreditation by BBB. Businesses based in the United States and Canada that meet these standards and complete application procedures will be accredited by BBB.

To be accredited by BBB a business or organization affirms that it meets and will abide by the following standards:

1. Build Trust

Establish and maintain a positive track record in the marketplace.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Have been operational (actively selling products or services) in any BBB service area for at least the most recent 12 months, unless the principal(s) previously operated a similar business with an eligible record (one that qualifies for BBB accreditation).

B. Fulfill all licensing and bonding requirements of applicable jurisdictions; provide all license and bonding information upon application for BBB accreditation; and provide periodic updates upon request of BBB.

C. Be free from government action that demonstrates a significant failure to support BBB ethical principles in marketplace transactions (this requires a determination by BBB as to the nature of any violation, whether it was caused or condoned by management, and actions taken to resolve underlying issues that led to the government action).

D. Be free of an unsatisfactory rating and maintain at least a B rating at the accrediting BBB  and the BBB where it is headquartered, if different.

E. In its relationship with BBB:

  • Meet all applicable standards within this Code of Business Practices
  • Cooperate with BBB’s activities and efforts to promote voluntary self-regulation within the business’ industry
  • Honor any settlements, agreements or decisions reached as an outcome of a BBB dispute resolution process
  • Complete the required application and pay all monetary obligations to BBB in a timely manner.

2. Advertise Honestly

Adhere to established standards of advertising and selling.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Follow federal, state/provincial and local advertising laws.

B. Abide by the BBB Code of Advertising, available online at: http://www.bbb.org/membership/codeofad.asp. Supply, upon request, substantiation for advertising and selling claims. Correct advertising and selling practices, when recommended by BBB.

C. Adhere to applicable BBB industry codes of advertising

D. Cooperate with BBB self-regulatory programs for the resolution of advertising disputes.

E. Use the BBB name and logos in accordance with BBB policy.

F. Avoid misleading customers by creating the false impression of sponsorship, endorsement, popularity, trustworthiness, product quality or business size through the misuse of logos, trustmarks, pictures, testimonials, or other means.

3. Tell the Truth

Honestly represent products and services, including clear and adequate disclosures of all material terms.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Make known all material facts in both written and verbal representations, remembering that misrepresentation may result not only from direct statements but by omitting or obscuring relevant facts.

B. Ensure that any written materials are readily available, clear, accurate and complete.

4. Be Transparent

Openly identify the nature, location, and ownership of the business, and clearly disclose all policies, guarantees and procedures that bear on a customer’s decision to buy.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Upon request, provide BBB with all information required to evaluate compliance with BBB standards. This may include, but is not limited to business name, address and contact information; names and background of principals; business and banking references; licensing and/or professional accreditation; and a complete description of the nature of the business.

B. Clearly disclose to customers:

  • Direct and effective means to contact the business
  • Terms of any written contract
  • Any guarantees or warranties accompanying a product
  • Any restrictions or limitations imposed (e.g. limited supply, maximum number available per customer)
  • The business’ return/refund policy
  • Any recurring commitment into which the customer may be entering, including information on how future billing will occur
  • Total cost of the transaction, including tax, shipping and handling, and other related charges

C. If selling products or providing services on Web sites or via other electronic means:

  • Provide any required product labeling information
  • Disclose the nature and terms of shipping, including any known delays or shortages of stock
  • Provide an opportunity to review and confirm the transaction before the sale is completed
  • Provide a receipt summarizing the transaction after the purchase

5. Honor Promises

Abide by all written agreements and verbal representations. 

An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Fulfill contracts signed and agreements reached.

B. Honor representations by correcting mistakes as quickly as possible. 

6. Be Responsive

Address marketplace disputes quickly, professionally, and in good faith.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Promptly respond to all complaints forwarded by BBB by:

1. Resolving the complaint directly with the complainant and notifying BBB, or

2. Providing BBB with a response that BBB determines:

  • Is professional,
  • Addresses all of the issues raised by the complainant,
  • Includes appropriate evidence and documents supporting the business’ position, and
  • Explains why any relief sought by the complainant cannot or should not be granted.

B. Make a good faith effort to resolve disputes, which includes mediation if requested by BBB. Other dispute resolution options, including arbitration, may be recommended by BBB when other efforts to resolve a dispute have failed. BBB may consider a business’ willingness to participate in recommended dispute resolution options in determining compliance with these standards.

C. Comply with any settlements, agreements or decisions reached as an outcome of a BBB dispute resolution process.

D. Cooperate with BBB in efforts to eliminate the underlying cause of patterns of customer complaints that are identified by BBB.

7. Safeguard Privacy

Protect any data collected against mishandling and fraud, collect personal information only as needed, and respect the preferences of customers regarding the use of their information.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

A. Respect Privacy

Businesses conducting e-commerce agree to disclose on their Web site the following:

  • What information they collect,
  • With whom it is shared,
  • How it can be corrected,
  • How it is secured,
  • How policy changes will be communicated, and;
  • How to address concerns over misuse of personal data.

B. Secure Sensitive Data

Businesses that collect sensitive data online (credit card, bank account numbers, Social Security number, salary or other personal financial information, medical history or records, etc.) will ensure that it is transmitted via secure means. Businesses will make best efforts to comply with industry standards for the protection and proper disposal of all sensitive data, both online and offline.

C. Honor Customer Preferences

Businesses agree to respect customer preferences regarding contact by telephone, fax and e-mail, and agree to remedy the underlying cause of any failure to do so.

8. Embody Integrity

Approach all business dealings, marketplace transactions and commitments with integrity.  An accredited business or organization agrees to:

Avoid involvement, by the business or its principals, in activities that reflect unfavorably on, or otherwise adversely affect the public image of BBB or its accredited businesses.

Business Name

 

Fees

 

Total Amount Due

Street Address 

 

City, State

Zip

Name of Representative

 

Title

Number of Employees

Signature

 

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Form of Payment

Application Completed by BBB Rep

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Signature of BBB Official

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