Work Scams

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This information applies to British Columbia, Canada. Last reviewed for legal accuracy by People's Law School in March 2017.

"Make $50,000 in less than 90 days working from home!" If you see a job offer that looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Work at home, make huge profits

Most of us love the idea of earning extra income or quitting our full-time jobs altogether and working from home. But unfortunately the vast majority of these offers are work-at-home scams.

These offers typically promise huge demand, big profits, and big earnings for part-time work. They often demand that you buy a "start-up kit" of supplies you’ll need to use for the work (for example, special software or tools). Or they insist you have to enrol in a costly training or certification program.

Once you buy the supplies or complete the training, you never hear from them again.

Under BC law, an employer cannot ask a person looking for work to pay a fee to find a job. An employer can't charge you for giving you a job or for providing you with information about possible work opportunities.

Preventing problems

Here are ways to reduce the risk of being the victim of a work scam.

Research the company

Learn as much as you can about the company and what it does. Check with the Better Business Bureau to see what they know about the company (see the "Where to Get Help" section for contact details).   

Get everything in writing

Get a complete description of the work involved. You should never have to pay for a job description.

Make sure you understand the offer

Before you sign anything, make sure you read it and understand it.

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