If you decide that you want to speak to a Psychic or Medium there are steps you can take to try and ensure that you’re not handing money over to somebody who is taking advantage of you.
The most important thing to remember is that you do not have to pay if you are not happy with the reading you have received. Psychics and Mediums who make money from their services are covered by ‘The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008′, just like any other trader, that means there are certain rules they have to abide by when offering a service to ensure they are trading legally.
Traders who do not comply with these regulations face investigation by their local authority’s trading standards service and other bodies, which can lead to prosecution and/or fines.
This is good for customers because it means you have more protection as a consumer and you can feel assured that steps have been taken to ensure you’re not being misled by the people or businesses you purchase goods or services from – and if you are misled, that there is something that can be done about it.
Even if the psychic show claims to be for entertainment purposes only, the fact they’re trading or performing under the title of ‘psychic’ or ‘medium’ and claiming to talk to the dead could mean you are entitled to get your money back. However this would depend upon the terms & conditions of the theatre you purchase the ticket from.
You can read here a guide for businesses that outlines behaviours and tactics that are not legal for them to do. It’s gives insight into things you may have witnessed as a customer that you didn’t realise the trader shouldn’t be doing.
Be a clever customer
It always pays to plan ahead, and just as you would with anything else you might purchase you can do the following things to try and avoid being misled. The following tips can also help you should you come to think you’ve been conned:
- Try conducting a google search prior to the reading (many consumer sites allow people to input their bad experiences as a customer. By typing the name, address or phone number of a business into google you can find some insightful comments)
- Clarify what you are paying for (i.e. are you paying for their alleged ability, or are you paying for their time and premises hire?)
- Ask for a receipt or invoice (if the Psychic or Medium refuses then do NOT hand over any money and leave immediately)
Make a note of the trading address of the Psychic or Medium, or the address at which your reading is taking place (or phone number from which the reading is being given)
- Always record your readings for future reference (if the Psychic or Medium refuses this do NOT proceed)
Think of paying a psychic like paying someone to fix your boiler – if you don’t think something seems right, trust your instinct and put the transaction on hold.
Resolving a problem
Usually, the best thing to do is to talk to the trader you have had a problem with. However, this isn’t always viable. If you can contact the trader, doing so by writing offers you a written copy of all contact made should you need it for future reference. Make sure you keep a copy of all letters you send to them and if you do not hear back within 10 – 14 days, write again. If no reply is made then, it may be time to take things a step further.
If you are in doubt over a service or product you have paid for, but you don’t hear back from the person you purchased it from, never allow their silence to put you off from persuing a complaint.
You can make a complaint to Consumer Direct online here
Find your local Trading Standards office here
Psychic scams by post , phone & print
According to Directgov, the UK governments digital service for people in England and Wales:
‘Psychic or clairvoyant scams approach you by sending you a letter. The letters can either:
-be aggressive – saying something terrible will happen to you if you don’t pay them
-predict wonderful things happening in your future and request money for a full report.
People have lost thousands of pounds paying for these fake reports… Clairvoyants and psychic scams are one of the most common scams sent by post. Identical letters are sent to thousands of other people to trick them ‘
Consumer direct have a great example of a psychic mail scam here
If you receive one of these letters do NOT respond to it. If it has a company name or contact details try to phone Consumer Direct and pass on the details. You can stop unwanted mail here.
Similarly, if you should be contacted by phone you can contact the Telephone Preference Service to opt out of marketing calls and similar.
If you have seen misleading advertising (in newspapers, magazines, or posters and leaflets, or even on websites) you can make a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority via their website, which is a great way to help stop others being scammed too.
If you have any more information or tips that we can share here then please get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.