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Attorney General Liz Murrill’s Consumer Tips for Natural Disaster victims

Many homes, structures and businesses were damaged following the severe storms and tornadoes that moved across a large part of Louisiana on Tuesday morning, April 10.

Attorney General Liz Murrill is alerting consumers about home repair scams and other disaster fraud schemes, to ensure they are receiving the necessary services needed to repair the damage.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the people who have suffered because of the severe storms yesterday. It’s sad that times like this often attract scammers and people who are looking to prey on innocent people following a disaster. My team and I want to make sure everyone is educated on contractor fraud, fake officials, and other criminal activity that could happen following a natural disaster," said Attorney General Liz Murrill.

Here are Attorney General Liz Murrill's Consumer Tips for Natural Disaster Victims:

- Take photographs. Photograph your contractor, his vehicle, his license plate, and his credentials. 

- Get multiple estimates. Be certain each bid is on the exact same work, is itemized, and is detailed. 

- Do not agree to a large down payment. Know that reputable contractors normally do not require down payments over 25% of the total price. 

- Get everything in writing. Do not accept verbal agreements and make sure any changes in the contract are also in writing and initialed by both parties. 

- Ask for ID. Verify credentials especially since some con artists portray themselves as government officials or insurance adjusters in order to obtain access into your home. 

- Check to make sure the company is legitimate. You can check for free with your local Better Business Bureau at 

- Give Carefully. Be wary of charities that arise immediately after a natural disaster. 

- Do not pay cash. Whether giving to charity or reimbursing a contractor, pay by check or money order and keep your receipt.  

Attorney General Liz Murrill encourages anyone who suspects fraud to report it to the National Center for Disaster Fraud by calling 1-866-720-5721.