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BBB warns area veterans of questionable sales pitches

The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) has been alerted to an out-of-state casket and funeral supply company, which claims to be a veteran's group. The company, U.S. Patriot Services, lists addresses in Kansas City, Mo. and Rossmoor, Calif., and a motto on their paperwork claims they are "Veterans Serving Veterans." Recently, the BBB contacted the company's national headquarters -- in Rossmoor -- to learn more about this claim. However, the company has failed to respond to the BBB's inquiry.

From a report the BBB received recently, the company seems to be focusing on elderly veterans in the Twin Cities metro area, going door-to-door and selling caskets and funeral urns. Based on how their paperwork is drawn up, the company makes it seem as though they're offering interment in National Cemeteries free of charge as part of their sales package. However, all U.S. veterans who are honorably discharged from the military are eligible for free interment in National Cemeteries, meaning this is not a benefit U.S. Patriot Services or any other funeral service company can offer.

The BBB is advising area veterans to ask the company to verify that they're actually a veteran's organization. In addition, the BBB reminded everyone to always request multiple quotes prior to making any purchase. The report the BBB received regarding U.S. Patriot Services indicates the company may have attempted to charge an area veteran more than double for funeral urns, compared to another funeral service company. According to this report, the veteran was able to get the company to refund his money after being made aware he'd been overcharged.