Coupons can be useful in several ways. You can use them to purchase brand name products for cheap. You can use them to bring down the cost of your grocery bill and feed a big family for less. Coupons are a blessing in that they can also positively impact your financial situation. While the savings can be great, you must know how to use them correctly. Incorrect use can mean coupon fraud. Follow along for what are the consequences of coupon fraud?
What Constitutes Coupon Fraud
In small print, at the bottom of the coupon, are the terms and conditions. It states that selling and making copies of coupons are prohibited. The coupons also state how many like coupons can be used per transaction per item. If the coupons are not used in accordance with the stated terms and conditions its use may be considered fraud.
Criminal Charges and Fines
When misusing coupons there are a number of criminal charges that can be used to punish you. Some of these charges include theft, larceny, and counterfeiting. The charges can be both a misdemeanor and a felony in nature. The classification of a felony or misdemeanor coincides with the dollar amount of the fraud. Simple theft charges can come with a fine of about $4000 and up to a year in jail. Counterfeiting coupons is like counterfeiting money. Doing so could mean a fine in the excess of $200,000 and as long as 17 years in jail.
It is also against coupon policy to sell items you acquire through coupons. While you may not get legal charges, you may need to claim any financial gain with the IRS to avoid fines. Using know glitches to exploit coupons is also against the law. Exploiting glitches is like using a coupon meant for one item, on another. It can be done when a coupon is coded incorrectly.
Coupons can be fun to use, but they come with great responsibility. Using them incorrectly can mean criminal charges and fines. It’s best to use them within the terms in conditions stated on the coupons. If you need more information on What are the consequences of coupon fraud, follow the posted video.