Music lovers are contesting the authenticity of autographs and memorabilia from their favorite musicians, according to Better Business Bureau's complaints against Autographs America Inc.
The online autograph dealer, based in Maple Valley, Wash., carries an "F" rating—BBB's lowest—due to 16 complaints over the last three years. Eight complaints remain unanswered or unresolved.
While autographs are advertised as "authentic" on autographsamerica.com, some complainants tell BBB that they believe signatures are forged. Additionally, complaints allege that the company refuses refunds for those dissatisfied with memorabilia. Some say that emails, messages and phone calls are left unanswered.
When seeking the signature of a celebrity, athlete or other public figure, compare:Price:
Check multiple auction sites to gauge the "going rate" for a specific autograph. Be wary of items advertised far above or below the average price.Dealers:
for BBB Business Reviews on "Autograph Dealers" across the country. Enter the dealer's name and business name into search engines for independent consumer reviews. Signatures:
Find examples of the celebrity's autograph to compare it to the potential purchase. View it closely to ensure it's not a reprint or autopen of an authentic signature; if images are blurry or distant, request other photos from the seller. Ask questions and find out if a Certificate of Authenticity is available.
for additional consumer tips.