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Why you should never pay too much upfront

Posted at 4:27 PM, Jun 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-15 21:49:35-04
We get a lot of promises that things will be made right for consumers, so we're revisiting a few stories to see whether promises were kept.
 
For example, when Dr. Tattoff disappeared from Tempe in February, customers were shocked.
 
Viewer Kailee said she had just pre-paid them hundreds of dollars for treatments that she will never be able to receive unless she's up for a road trip. Instead of refunds, Dr. Tattoff referred customers to the next closest location in Montclair, California.
 
The company told me that they were "in negotiations" to find a local removal place to finish patients' treatment and that they hoped to "have something good to pass on to patients soon as to the alternative provider." We reported that.
 
Kailee said she never heard from Dr. Tattoff again.
 
We reached out to Dr. Tattoff CFO Harry L. Zimmerman repeatedly to find out why.
 
His response? Nothing.
 
The same thing happened with Robert Shaw, who owned The Palms Theater in Mesa when it abruptly shut down last year.
 
Best friends Beth and Barbara paid $1,500 upfront to get the best deal. Instead, they got an email from owner Shaw, saying the theater closed and that he would not be giving their money back. 
 
But in the email, Shaw promised to partner with a different organization to honor outstanding tickets.
 
Beth told us that she never heard from Shaw again, so we emailed his new and old theater groups.
 
*Crickets*
 
Again, no response.
 
The problem with paying upfront is that once the cash is gone-- it's gone. There is no stop payment or disputing the charge.
 
So it's best to pay as little as possible with a credit card until you have the service you require.
 
Need my help? Call the Assistance League of Phoenix volunteers at 1-855-323-1515. You can also send me an email  or a video email where you attach a video explaining the problem.
 
And you can reach me on Twitter or "like" the Let Joe Know Facebook page and tell me about it there.
 
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