1) The first thing I would do if I was concerned that a coupon was fake is I would look it up in our COUPON DATABASE. The database lists all the coupons available.
2) Consider the source. Where did you find it? If it was a PDF, then I would really be skeptical.
3) Does it look like it has been altered?
4) Does it contain an odd retail value?
5) Is everything on the coupon spelled correctly?
6) Does it contain a UPC?
7) Is it for a free product? These coupons are usually obtained directly from the manufacture or from the newspaper. They are not usually obtained using your printer.
Here is an example provided by my friend Sara at Budget Savvy Diva
NEW FAKE COUPON ALERT
What are the penalties for coupon fraud?
Longest prison sentence: 17 years
Highest financial penalty: $5 million
Prison sentences of three to five years are not uncommon. Financial penalties generally vary, but have often been in excess of $200,000.
This is why Budget Savvy Diva is SUCH a great resource – I give you all the updated coupon news happening in your world – so make sure to check back daily. If YOU have a fake coupon – there is a high chance that it will be accepted at the store BUT you can easily be tracked so make sure to know where you are getting your printable coupon information from. MANY fake coupons will be in BRICK format – meaning it will be the only coupon you can print…
I cannot stress enough about where you get your printable coupon information — I know someone who found out about a “fake” ( they did not know at the time) coupon from another deal site and was caught and fine the $2,500 .
Check out MORE Fake Coupon Alerts HERE
EVEN IF YOU UNINTENTIONALLY REDEEM A FAKE COUPON YOU CAN BE CHARGED – $2,500 !!!
There are some red flags in this coupon that should let you know it is fake:
1) It is to good to be true –
2) The expiration date – the better the deal there will be less of an expiration date