Multnomah County
District Attorney

1200 SW 1st Avenue, Suite 5200
Portland, OR 97204
503-988-3162

Multnomah County District Attorney

 
1200 SW 1st Avenue, Suite 5200
| Portland, OR 97204
| 503-988-3162
 

Information about wildfire scams and donations

 

(En Español abajo)

The wildfires of September 2020 impacted all Oregonians. As of today, September 18, 2020, firefighters have been significant progress and law enforcement continues to rescind evacuation orders.

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office thanks the firefighters and other first responders who are working so hard to protect lives and property.

Oregonians are always willing to help. Right now, so many families, friends and strangers need our support. Unfortunately, there are people willing to take advantage of these disasters. The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office wants you to be aware of scams.

We have provided the following links and information for community members to use during the recovery efforts.

Donations:

Emergency relief organizations say the best way to help right now is through a financial donation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many organizations do not want to or cannot accept physical donations. Often times, non-monetary donations can hamper relief and on-going emergency efforts.

The Northwest Oregon Chapter of the American Red Cross is currently accepting online donations.

Recently, several of Oregon’s leading charities joined together to create the “2020 Community Rebuilding Fund.” For more information on that effort, please click here.

If you choose to donate through another means, it’s important to do your research.

  • Know where your donation is going
  • Know how it will be used
  • Make sure you are donating on a secure and legitimate website
  • Be suspicious of email and social media solicitations
  • Links can often contain viruses or direct you to bogus websites
  • Be cautious about providing financial information to someone over the phone

If you believe you have been the victim of a scam, report it to the Oregon Department of Justice or your local law enforcement. In Multnomah County, the non-emergency report line is 503.823.3333.

Property owners:

If you have been impacted by the wildfires in Oregon talk with your insurance agent immediately.

It’s vital that property owners research contractors and verify that they are registered with the state. You can do this through the Oregon Construction Contractors Board. It is against Oregon law to for a person to represent themselves as a contractor without a valid license.

Other important information for property owners to remember includes:

  • Be sure to take your time understanding the contract and the work that is expected
  • Never fully pay up front before work is actually completed
  • No legitimate recovery organization will ask you to provide money in order to eventually receive state or federal financial aid or assistance
  • Be aware of phony home and property inspectors

La Oficina del Fiscal del Condado de Multnomah quiere proporcionar al público información para protegerse de fraude.

Es contra de la ley que pretender ser contratista sin tener una licencia válida.

  • Primero, ninguna organización legítima le va a pedir que de dinero por adelantado a cambio de recibir asistencia del gobierno.
  • Segundo, si usted ha sido impactado por los incendios y es dueño de su casa, hable primero con su compañía de seguros antes de hacer reparaciones o contratar a un contratista.
  • Asegúrese que las personas que contraten estén registradas con la Comisión de Contratistas de Construcción del Estado de Oregon
  • Cuando decida contratar tome el tiempo necesario para entender bien el contrato de reparaciones y el trabajo esperado.

Recuerde, no es recomendable que pague por anticipado o antes que el trabajo sea terminado. Y tenga precaución con inspectores de propiedad fraudulentos. Si usted teme que un inspector de propiedad es fraudulento, contacte a su departamento de policía inmediatamente para reportar a esa persona.

La Oficina del Fiscal de Distrito del Condado de Multnomah quiere que usted esté al tanto de las estafas para que su dinero y su identidad personal estén protegidos.

Recientemente, varias organizaciones benéficas de Oregón se unieron para crear el “Fondo de Reconstrucción Comunitaria 2020”.

Todas estas son organizaciones de confianza y verificadas en Oregon. El dinero que elija donar irá directamente a una comunidad de Oregon que seleccione.

Y, puede elegir si desea que su donación sea destina hacia el alivio de emergencia inmediato o a los esfuerzos de recuperación a medio y largo plazo.

Si decide donar a través de otro medio, es importante hacer su investigación:

  • Saber a dónde va su donación
  • Saber cómo se utilizará
  • Asegurarse de que está donando en un sitio web seguro y legítimo.

Si usted cree que ha sido víctima de fraude, repórtelo al Departamento de Justicia de Oregon o al departamento de policía local. Nuestra oficina trabaja con estas agencias para investigar estos casos y perseguir estos criminales. Estamos para servir.