Attorney Gen. Madigan takes action against fake veteran charities

    Attorney Gen. Madigan takes action against fake veteran charities. (WICS)

    Attorney General Lisa Madigan is cracking down on fake charities claiming to help veterans.

    Madigan is joining all 50 states and the FTC in what's called, "Operation Donate with Honor."

    The coalition has already announced action has been taken against more than 100 charities, fundraisers and individuals.

    They are also starting a new donor education campaign.

    Madigan encourages potential donors to learn how to spot fraudulent and deceptive solicitations and make sure their contributions actually benefit veterans and service members.

    When donating to charity, Madigan advises consumers to:

    • Ask for the charity’s name, website and physical location;
    • Ask how much of any donation will go to the charitable program you want to support;
    • Check Madigan’s Charitable Trust Database to see if a charity is up-to-date on its registration;
    • Search the charity’s name online with the word “scam” or “complaint” and see what other people say about it;
    • Check out the charity’s ratings at the Wise Giving Alliance, Charity Watch or Charity Navigator;
    • Never pay with cash, a gift card or by wiring money; and
    • Consider paying by credit card, which is the safest option for security and tax purposes.

    Illinois residents with questions or complaints about charitable giving can contact Madigan’s Consumer Fraud hotlines at:

    • 1-800-386-5438 (Chicago)
    • 1-800-243-0618 (Springfield)
    • 1-800-243-0607 (Carbondale)

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