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Nothing can ruin a wedding like a good scam. A bride's happiest day could quickly turn into a nightmare if it turns out the wedding dress is a sham. And it turns out vendors themselves should be on the look-out for phony brides and grooms.
Here are three of the biggest wedding scams and how to avoid them.
1. The Disappearing Dress
The focal point for almost every wedding is the bride's wedding dress. They can take months to pick out and weeks to fit and alter, all for one day of glory. But all the beauty of that moment can vanish in minutes if it turns out the dress isn't right, or doesn't exist.
From cheap replicas to fake websites, beware of the bridal gown scam. Brides-to-be are encouraged to shop local, rather than online, and from reputable stores.
2. The Gift Grab
Half the fun of the wedding is the loot! But you want to make sure all your wedding presents make it home with you. While most couples would never guess that one of their guests would pilfer their presents, wedding gift theft happens ... more often than we'd like. Using an online registry and keeping the gift table in prominent view can make sure you don't go home empty-handed.
(Speaking of home, you'll want to make sure yours is extra secure during the festivities -- if it can happen to Michael Buble, it can happen to you.)
3. Vendor Veracity
Wedding vendor scams go both ways. Sometimes a couple will pay a photographer who never shows up. And sometimes a fake couple offers to wire a photographer money just to gain access to her bank account. The key to a healthy, safe, and legal vendor-vendee relationship is to keep meetings in-person and keep your financial information private.
If you've been the victim of a wedding scam, you might want to contact an experienced consumer protection attorney near you. Mazel tov!