Something weird this day came

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
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Spirit Rider
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Something weird this day came

Post by Spirit Rider » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:49 pm

This is not exactly personal finance or a personal consumer issue, but it sure is actionable.

Today I received a 9 x 12 envelope in the mail. Inside was an 8" x 10" photograph print with a couple of senior men in middle of a sparse gathering of seniors. I'm not sure, but one of the men seemed vaguely familiar.

Nothing else was in the envelope! Note: The envelope was addressed to my nickname, which I have never used for any legal, employment or consumer purpose.

The return address was ABCD "Law Office" from one of the very few states I have never been in. I googled the law offices and they do exist but only in listings of attorneys but no real net presence. Which in itself might not be that surprising, because the lawyer is also a senior and probably isn't a social media person.

I am hesitant to just pick up the phone and call. Does this seem like a scam? A zombie debt collector? Any suggestions?

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FIREchief
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by FIREchief » Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:00 am

Spirit Rider wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:49 pm
This is not exactly personal finance or a personal consumer issue, but it sure is actionable.

Today I received a 9 x 12 envelope in the mail. Inside was an 8" x 10" photograph print with a couple of senior men in middle of a sparse gathering of seniors. I'm not sure, but one of the men seemed vaguely familiar.

Nothing else was in the envelope! Note: The envelope was addressed to my nickname, which I have never used for any legal, employment or consumer purpose.

The return address was ABCD "Law Office" from one of the very few states I have never been in. I googled the law offices and they do exist but only in listings of attorneys but no real net presence. Which in itself might not be that surprising, because the lawyer is also a senior and probably isn't a social media person.

I am hesitant to just pick up the phone and call. Does this seem like a scam? A zombie debt collector? Any suggestions?
Wow. It will be interesting to see what kind of responses you get with this thread. My first thought was that maybe they thought you might recognize one of the men and call them to ask "why did you sent me a photo with my Great Uncle Joe's picture? I haven't seen him since I was a kid." If they're trying to locate distant relatives, without having to sort through a bunch of scam artists, that might be an efficient approach. I would imagine that if this were legit, and you called and told them that you received the photo and think you recognize the guy on the right, then they might tell you more. Maybe you've inherited ten million dollars, and you just don't know it yet. If the law firm is legit, then you probably wouldn't be taking much chance to call. Maybe you can find out what type of practice it is. If it is estate and elder law, you're probably okay. If they are ambulance chasing litigators, then I would be much more nervous. Have you checked the website for the local Bar Association? That might provide more info on the type of practice. Local yellow pages might be useful as well (if they still have those).
I am not a lawyer, accountant or financial advisor. Any advice or suggestions that I may provide shall be considered for entertainment purposes only.

Nate79
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Nate79 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 1:12 am

Maybe there was supposed to be a note inside that got mistakenly omitted. I would call them up to see why they sent it.

basspond
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by basspond » Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:26 am

I would treat as a scam/phish and would not respond.

jadedfalcons
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by jadedfalcons » Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:41 am

A friend of mine posted several items on Facebook like this. Basically apparently somebody signed him up for some sort of mystery thing and he got several mailings with old photographs, copies of old newspaper articles in foreign languages, etc.

He enjoyed the puzzle, me, I never got the point.

Yooper
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Yooper » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:28 am

Hints of the "Red-Headed League"..........

Cheyenne
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Cheyenne » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:40 am

I would send them a bill for $50 for opening it and looking at it. That would be .2 hours at my normal rate. And add on $ .20 for the envelope and $ .50 for the postage (and don't forget $2.00 for a photo copy.

retiredjg
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by retiredjg » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:32 am

The simplest explanation is often the right one. Maybe a letter got left out of the envelope.

Before calling them, I'd try to verify the ABCD Law Office actually exists through something more than google. Seems unlikely, but that webpage might be manufactured.

But maybe you could look at the office on the view page of google maps or check the state's listing of attorneys licensed to practice or one of those lawyer referral services or any number of other things that might find an actual law office.

Intriguing. When you find out, let us know. :happy

ColoRetiredGirl
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by ColoRetiredGirl » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:42 am

Nate79 wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 1:12 am
Maybe there was supposed to be a note inside that got mistakenly omitted. I would call them up to see why they sent it.
+1. This was my first thought. Maybe the letter was accidentally omitted.

Dottie57
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Dottie57 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:48 am

I would ignore it. If it is important to sender you will receive more info.

an_asker
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by an_asker » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:48 am

Yooper wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:28 am
Hints of the "Red-Headed League"..........
I thought this sounded like the beginning of a Sherlock Holmes mystery as well!!

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celia
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by celia » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:51 am

As a genealogist who had to clean up the estate of another genealogist (a relative), I sent several letters and photos back to the senders who sent them many years ago. Maybe someone else is also doing that, only that you weren't the sender. See if any of your relatives also got a photo of uncle "Joe". While you're talking to them, see if they recognize anyone else in the photo.

2b2
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by 2b2 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:52 am

I wouldn't call until I first verified that the phone number (or at least the area code) was actually in the US.

2b2

staythecourse
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by staythecourse » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:53 am

All I can say is lawyers are use their language as a razor sharp weapon in their profession. So for one to end anything WITHOUT a very detailed letter would be a shock. I would ignore it and just file it away. If it is anything you should get another letter. If it is nothing then the situation will go away as they have likely spammed MANY other folks.

One thing I have learned from Mr. Bogle that I use OUTSIDE of finances is if you don't know what to do in certain situations as there is no clear cut answer just stand there and do nothing. The result then just plays out as default.

Good luck.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle

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fishandgolf
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by fishandgolf » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:04 am

Spirit Rider wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:49 pm

I'm not sure, but one of the men seemed vaguely familiar.

The envelope was addressed to my nickname, which I have never used for any legal, employment or consumer purpose.
Who is the person that looks familiar?

Who knew/knows your nickname?

Teague
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Teague » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:41 am

This envelope was sent from the future.

That man who looks vaguely familiar? It's you! :shock:
Semper Augustus

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jfn111
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by jfn111 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:50 am

Teague wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:41 am
This envelope was sent from the future.

That man who looks vaguely familiar? It's you! :shock:
:sharebeer

carofe
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by carofe » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:52 am

Teague wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:41 am
This envelope was sent from the future.

That man who looks vaguely familiar? It's you! :shock:
This answer just made my morning, LOL
US Total Stock Market + Intermediate Term Bond. That's it.

chevca
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by chevca » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:43 am

Teague wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:41 am
This envelope was sent from the future.

That man who looks vaguely familiar? It's you! :shock:
Nicely done!! :D

OP, what I would do that's actionable.... find the nearest trash can and deposit the picture there. If this is really from someone that knows you, there will be more mail and attempts to contact. It doesn't sound like that's the case to me though.

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cinghiale
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by cinghiale » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:47 am

Yooper wrote:
Hints of the "Red-Headed League"..........
And an_asker replied,
I thought this sounded like the beginning of a Sherlock Holmes mystery as well!!
But wait... there’s more. Look at Spirit Rider’s thread title.

Let this affair end up more A. Conan Doyle and less Ray Bradbury... or Macbeth.
"We don't see things as they are; we see them as we are." Anais Nin | | "Sometimes the first duty of intelligent men is the restatement of the obvious." George Orwell

Spirit Rider
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Spirit Rider » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:38 am

fishandgolf wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:04 am
Spirit Rider wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:49 pm
I'm not sure, but one of the men seemed vaguely familiar.

The envelope was addressed to my nickname, which I have never used for any legal, employment or consumer purpose.
Who is the person that looks familiar? I have no idea, just that they look familiar

Who knew/knows your nickname? Family, close friends and close colleagues.

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Watty
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by Watty » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:40 am

You can use Google Street view to see what the building at the address of the law firm looks like and that might help you decide if it looks like a real law firm.

You have nothing to lose by calling them on Monday.

They already know your name and address and if they start asking for things like your bank account number to send you the millions of dollars that your long lost uncle who was a Nigerian prince left you then you can just refuse to give it.

You can block your phone number on the caller ID by dialing *67 before you dial the phone number.

https://www.wikihow.com/Block-Caller-ID
2b2 wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:52 am
I wouldn't call until I first verified that the phone number (or at least the area code) was actually in the US.


That is a good point, there are a few scams where you can end up dialing some number in the Caribbean that is not an obvious international number but they try to charge you some high fee.

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LadyGeek
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Re: Something weird this day came

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:44 am

This thread has run its course and is locked (not personal finance or investing related). See: Acceptable Topics and Subforum Guidelines
This is an investing and personal finance forum. We also maintain a subforum that allow our members to discuss consumer goods and services and recreational activities. Anything else is considered "Off Topic" and is not acceptable on this forum.
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