From Deanna Walter, Chelan County Assessor:
We want to give you a heads-up regarding a recent telemarketing scheme that appears to be directed at senior citizens.
WA State Department of Revenue has received a number of phone calls over the last two days from senior citizens who have been contacted by a telephone solicitor marketing reverse mortgages. The callers identify themselves as agents of “Seniors First” and their current target group appears to be Washington senior citizens.
As a lead-in to selling their product, the solicitor asks for personal information such as employment status, income, and age, under the guise of attempting to help the senior determine whether they qualify for our state’s property tax relief programs or for aid and assistance programs for veterans. The solicitors imply that they are marketing these benefit programs on the state’s behalf. This is NOT true.
This is particularly troubling since the information provided by this telemarketer to taxpayers is incorrect. For example, one taxpayer was told he could have a refund on property taxes paid for the five previous years and in another case tenants were told they qualified for a property tax exemption on their rental home. Your County Assessor’s Office (667-6365) or the State Dept of Revenue are the only accurate information outlets for this exemption program. Do not EVER give out personal information over the phone unless you are certain you have the correct office and YOU initiated the call.
Please contact our office if you are solicited for this program (667-6365). Any information you can provide regarding the caller will also be forwarded to the Attorney General’s Fraud division.
Chelan County Assessor
350 Orondo St
Wenatchee, WA 98801
Fax (509) 667-6664