Letter saying unclaimed Canadian insurance policy worth millions is a scam

RALEIGH, NC (WNCN) – Letters offering a huge deal from a Canadian law firm were sent to area mailboxes recently.

When we came to a CBS 17 viewer, they asked consumer investigator Steve Sbraccia to check it out.

The letter informed the viewer, a woman from Raleigh, that an unclaimed $ 8.9 million insurance policy from a “distant relative” had not been claimed and that if the viewer consented to a partnership with the sender, 10% of the money would go to charity, and the viewer and sender would share the rest between them.

Who is the sender?

The header stated that it was from a law firm in Toronto, Ontario, and that the sender was a “Terry Alton” claiming to be a partner in the firm.

Sbraccia began his investigation by calling the number listed in the letter.

A man who identified himself as Terry said to “call back in an hour”.

When Sbraccia tried to explain what he wanted, the man interrupted him by saying again, “Call back in an hour, okay? “

When Sbraccia called back, he received a voice prompt saying “Your call has been transferred to a voicemail service that has not been initiated by the customer you are calling.”

Three subsequent attempts over the next few days resulted in the same voice prompt.

Sbraccia continued his investigation by digging.

He checked with the Ontario Bar database which is their version of the bar association.

There was no sign of lawyer Terry Alton. A check of the name of the law firm yielded a similar result: no cases were returned.

To be sure, Sbraccia also checked the Toronto Lawyers Association database for attorney Terry Alton.

Again, no profile found.

CAS 17 asked the Law Society of Ontario if there was another database of lawyers.

Thye said in an email that any lawyer practicing law in Ontario, Canada must be licensed by the Law Society of Ontario and will be listed in their online directory.

So what to do with this letter? It is a scam, which has already been tried.

Louisiana state bar alert warns of letters sent to people in that state, allegedly by an Ontario law firm, about an important legacy from a distant relative.

the Louisiana State Bar Association claims that when the origins of the letter were investigated, it was a phishing scam aimed at obtaining personal information.


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Justin D. O'Neill