Better Business Bureau reports 123 complaints against magazine publisher

A Northwest-based company is under fire for sending questionable magazine subscription billings and renewal notices to consumers nationwide. In some cases, subscriptions were already pre-paid directly to publishers or never ordered in the first place.

Better Business Bureau’s complaints on Liberty Publishers Service Inc. of Medford and White City, Ore., are piling up; 123 complaints have been filed since September 2011. The company is operating under more than 50 different business names, including Publishers Payment, Publishers Billing, Circulation Billing Services, United Publishers Services and other variations.

BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington offers tips on unexpected mailings, postcards or invoices:

-     Subscribing? Check previously paid invoices to see if subscription details match, such as: publication titles, quantity, pricing, expiration dates and senders’ information. If suspicious, contact the original distribution companies directly.

-     Suspicious stacks? Scan notices carefully for advertisement disclaimers. Avoid responding to inadvertently accept new subscriptions; but before dismissing offers, verify correspondence with roommates or family members who may have made the purchases.

-     Not subscribing? Non-subscribers are not obligated to pay. Contact senders and opt out to reduce unwanted mail.

-     Cancelling? Legitimate businesses should willingly provide cancellation policies or terms upfront. Get written confirmation of cancellations; if possible, send requests by certified mail. Keep documentation and monitor accounts to block future charges.

-     Issues? To avoid magazine subscription scams, review tips from the Federal Trade Commission and read news from Better Business Bureau. Report issues to BBB and the state Attorney General’s office.

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