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Locksmith bait-and-switch popping up again in Vegas

Reported by: Christine Kim
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Updated: 6/18/2013 6:37 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV -- Getting locked out -- it's something you don't think about until it happens. If you don't do your homework, it could cost you hundreds of dollars.

The Better Business Bureau says over the past year it received more than 40 complaints about locksmiths overcharging customers who complained they were quoted a small price, which ended up becoming hundreds of dollars.

The BBB suggests when you call a locksmith to ask them several questions.

First, ask if they have a business license number so that you can check it. Second, ask for a price range after you describe the type of lock. And third, ask if they take credit cards.

Tom Hatfield, 80, says he was charged $295 to get his door handle unlocked, and he was told this was cash only.

When he told the technician he didn't have that much cash, he followed Hatfield to an ATM.

“I got $200 out and said this is all I can get at one time,” Hatfield said. “And he said, ‘That's OK; you're allowed $400 a day, so you can put your card back in and get another $100.’ So I was like I didn’t know what else to do. I really didn’t.”

Nevada is one of the 14 states that require all locksmiths to have licenses and a background check. For a list of accredited locksmiths, go to the Better Business Bureau website.


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