When planning a wedding, everywhere you turn, you’re being told you will barely remember the specifics of the day. To counteract this potential problem an increasing amount of couples hire videographers to capture scenes from the happiest day of their life. But what if, after paying thousands of dollars and giving those individuals access to your most intimate moments, you never heard from them again. Many consumers are reporting this exact experience, tainting their memories and prompting the Better Business Bureau of the Upstate to warn consumers of the business practices of Brian Kelly Multimedia, LLC.
Consumers confirm that the company is responsive leading up to the event, and the problems begin to arise once the company asks for the second installment of their fee. Customers are told the typical editing window is 4-6 months, which only begins once the second payment has been received. “He told me that clients that had all their fees paid in full were moved up the process queue.”
Once the time period is up, consumers report receiving no response or sporadic replies with alternate timelines that fail to materialize. After waiting over three months with no indication of when the video would be delivered after constant calls, texts and emails, one bride saw only one option. “I felt the only alternative left was to dispute the second half of the payment through my credit card company on 9/29/16. IT WAS ONLY AFTER FILING the dispute, did Brian Kelly contact me via email that same day and said something about a family medical situation but promised to have the video done by Oct 21-24th... I followed up with him via email that same day - 9/29, 10/11, 10/19, 10/24, 10/25, and 10/26 via text and email. NO RESPONSE. Since he is not responding to any method of contact, it appears that I have paid $1,973.12 for services not received.”
In most of the complaints, the desired resolution is solely for the video to be delivered. Consumers remain hopeful that they can still recover the raw footage, at the very least, to fulfill the original purpose of hiring a videographer.
After numerous attempts by the BBB to reach Brian Kelly by phone, postal mail and email, the complaints have been closed as no response, and consumers are still searching for answers. Further investigation into the company’s business practices compiled with the amount of complaints, has earned Brian Kelly Multimedia an F rating.
When considering vendors for a wedding, the BBB recommends the following tips:
- Plan Ahead: Try to make arrangements with the various vendors at least a year in advance, in order to get the date you want. Since reservations are often booked far in advance, this will assure more flexibility in planning.
- Set A Budget: Then stick to it! Do not fall for high pressure sales tactics - if you don't want or can’t afford something, don't buy it. It is your day, and you are in control of the decisions.
- Pay With Credit Cards: Credit cards offer consumers added protection in the event of a problem, because you can generally have your card issuer "pull back" the charge and investigate any problems within 60 days of receiving your statement, even if you have already paid the charge. In some cases, they may extend you a longer "dispute" period. Unfortunately, checks or cash offer no such protection.
- Get Contracts in Writing: Remember that all written contracts should include specific dates, products, prices, name brands, and be signed by all parties involved. Cancellation policies should also be included in the contracts. This includes any refund policies and returns on deposits. If these are not already included in the contract, insist that they are added before you sign. Do not assume that if you cancel a contract, you will receive a 100% refund. Be sure that you are aware of refund or cancellation policies before you sign a contract and that the terms are completely spelled out in the written contract. Also, try to keep deposits as small as possible as they are often non-refundable. Smaller deposits may mean less money lost if there is a change in plans.
- Schedule Extra Delivery Time: Anticipate that you may encounter some problems and allow for delays - do not have everything scheduled to be delivered the day before the wedding.
- Don't Be Lured By the Lowest Price: Your wedding is a once in a lifetime event, so you want to do it right. Be careful not to hire unknown companies simply because they advertise the lowest prices. First, research the company’s quality and reliability record.
- Research A Company Before Using It: There are three simple ways to find a good company: 1) Ask friends for the names of companies that they have used with good results. 2) Ask for references. Any legitimate company will be pleased to provide previously satisfied clients. However, do not stop there. Follow through and actually call the clients to find out it they were satisfied and if they may have some suggestions about doing business with that particular company. 3) Lastly, check companies with your local Better Business Bureau before doing business with them. In the event you do have a problem, you can also contact the BBB to file a complaint.