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Updated on April 22, 2013
Envelope From Personnel Concepts Labor Laws (Scam)
Envelope From Personnel Concepts Labor Laws (Scam)

About the Letter You Received in the Mail

When I received this letter...THE FIRST TIME (They have began sending them on a harassing, annoying basis, which led me to writing this article), I thought the same as you - "Ugh, I owe yet ANOTHER $25 to the government" (If you own a business you're probably like me and feel like there isn't a day that goes by that you don't have some kind of bill or tax to pay).

So anyway, this letter shows up and it looks pretty official. The envelope says in GIANT letters:


My letter arrived in a standard looking envelope - just like the kind the city sends me to pay Personal Property Taxes and such. The combination of the formal looking bill and the term "COMPLIANCE SERVICE DEPARTMENT" made me think it was something I had to pay. Here's what my envelope looks like:

Immediately and Intentionally Confusing - Part 1

So I opened my letter right away and I find this "bill" (photo below):

The very first thing that jumps out to me is the 18 point font in bold that says "ALERT: You Must Post Revised Michigan & Federal Labor Law Notices"

To the far left of the letter is all of my accurate company information - my personal name, my company name, my company address, etc; the only thing left blank is my phone number and my business is listed as "general".

In the center of the letter is a list of Michigan Notices (employer laws / employee rights).

To the right of the letter is a list of Federal Notices.

Then, in more bold-face print, directly in the center of the letter it says "FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH POSTING REGULATIONS CAN LEAD TO FINES UP TO $17,000 (29 USC SEC.666(I) & (29 USC SEC. 2005). RETURN THIS FORM IN THE ENCLOSED ENVELOPE TO BRING YOUR BUSINESS INTO COMPLIANCE"

Immediately and Intentionally Confusing - Part 2

After you read the above, you're probably either a skeptic (hence the reason you're reading this article) or you're thinking "There goes another $25" - either way, something inspired you to look this up and good for you.

So the next confusing part of this letter is the section that asks for your credit card information and which signs you want to order...granted, this is made to look like a bill, so why on earth am I being asked which signs I want to order????

Then you flip the "bill" over and you see more confusion:

Immediately and Intentionally Confusing - Part 3

The back of this "bill" has a giant bold-print "UPDATE NOTICE - 2013" (which is the current year; thus making it look even more like a legitimate bill)

The back side then goes on to state your business information - which is accurate (thus adding to the "legitimacy" of this "bill"). There's more bold face print that makes words like "FEDERAL", "RECENT MANDATORY CHANGE", etc stand out.

Then there's a who paragraph of ramble about how their firm (Personnel Concepts) is such a huge help to businesses. BUT....


NOTHING on this letter states that these Labor Law Materials are FREE to businesses from the government. Simply go to Federal and State websites and download the posters... for free

The trick is, they continue to pull off this scam because they HAVE included the disclaimer in the trickiest place ever (see photo below):

The text to keep them out of legal trouble IS located on the backside of the PART OF THE MAILER THAT YOU THROW OUT. Not only is it the ONLY part of the letter that is printed in light gray, but it is also surrounded by matching gray "security print", and to top it off, the disclaimer is printed at the very bottom. If you can't find the fine print, its probably because you are like every other business owner and already threw out the top part (that they intentionally made into a throw-away piece of paper).

As a Graphic Designer, I Can Tell You This is a GREAT SCAM

The scam was designed beautifully. The bold face, large print is located in all the right places to "pop". The use of using my state image in combination with "MICHIGAN BUSINESS", "FEDERAL", and "IMMEDIATE RESPONSE REQUESTED", without a doubt got me to open the letter. The hiding of the disclaimer in light gray that matches the standard security print is genius.

The paper they chose to use and overall design also deserves recognition for their overall design of trickery.

So kudos to Personnel Concepts, a D.B.A of the company AIO Acquisition, INC.

Here's a link to view their Rip-Off Report Page for the Personnel Concepts Scam.

Odd that the only thing printed in the lightest gray ink possible is the hidden disclaimer, yet they have enough black and bold to print everything else, eh?
Odd that the only thing printed in the lightest gray ink possible is the hidden disclaimer, yet they have enough black and bold to print everything else, eh?

My Personal Comments to Personnel Concepts

If you want to sell your posters, then sell them, but don't waste my time. You know full well exactly what you are doing with your graphic design trickery.

Why not just send a NORMAL solicitation and photos of your product like everyone else does?

Every time you send me another solicitation I am going to write another article about it.

And Just for The Heck of It

Here's a photo of the "Return Envelope" -

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Have You Gotten This Letter?

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    • profile image

      elaine 6 weeks ago

      yes I received this same letter and I do not have any employees.

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      Samone 2 months ago

      Thank you so much for this article. I received a letter today that was made out to me as the owner of Slimetastic which is my daughter’s play business. It was never registered with the state or federal for that matter! I knew right then something was wrong. This is a hobby my 10 year old was into, never made any money. They are still at it and I feel bad to those who were actually scammed by this dishonest company

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      Beth 2 months ago

      Wow, what a bunch of LOSERS!!! You posted this in 2013, it's now the end of 2017 and they're still at it! I knew right away it was not legit, but the less seasoned are going to think it's really from the government because like you said, it's a pretty convincing mailer. I don't have any employees so no need for posters anyway. People, pleeeeaaase don't fall for these scam artists! Read, read, read the small, tiny print, the back and the bottom of each mailer. 99.9% of the time, it's total bullshit!!

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      Leonard 3 months ago

      As a nonprofit all Volunteer organization I immediately questioned the need to post this information. To be charged for it also confused me. - Didn't fall for it but it was well written and I was confused for about 5-10 minutes.

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      Catherine 7 months ago

      Thank you so much for posting this SCAM. I received this in july 2017 and will ignore it.

    • profile image

      Sam 9 months ago

      Yeah, they're all available for free on your state and federal pages, IF you can find which ones you need and IF you can print them all out and laminate them cheaply.

      I have found PC to be a life saver because they will inform me every time that there is a change in law and the posters have been updated, which has happened three times in the last year. And they send those out for free to my business. For that service alone, they're fantastic.

      Don't panic every time someone sends you a letter with important service notice stamped on it, or mentions fines. They're doing their due diligence and informing you that, hey, you need this updated and this is why. Or maybe I'm just not afraid of legalese and statutes because I worked at a law firm for so long.

      Either way, do your homework and pick your poison. As a manager for two offices, I'm happy to get the guesswork of if our posters are up to date and which ones we need off of my plate so that I can focus on other matters.

    • profile image

      Cameron 10 months ago

      Thanks for your posting of this SCAM!

      the light bulb turned on as soon as i opened this letter and immediately did a search about the compliance regulations and your posting confirmed this SCAM.

    • profile image

      Paula 10 months ago

      I got one too and they said I was the owner of a company called Asmarra Affordable. I looked it up on google and there is no company by that name and I would never use that name if I did have a company. I don't know how they got my name either. Also I live in Texas not CA. I used to live in CA and wish I was still their.

      Thanks for putting up this website to help other like me that got this spam.

    • profile image

      Ino Sanchez 10 months ago

      Received it for the first time and luckily I goggled the company first, and found the scam.

    • profile image

      LK 12 months ago

      I've gotten several letters about this. The first one they wanted to charge me $80 for the poster, the last they want to charge $5, guess they'll take what they can get.

    • profile image

      Kevin 13 months ago

      I read this post too late...

      After charging me $26 for the poster, they're trying to charge me $250 for other additional fees that I did not agree to.

      And threaten me that they're able to sell my business to third party if I don't pay the $250.

      Should I just pay the $250 and get it over with? or would they charge me more after?

    • profile image

      Kathryn 14 months ago

      Yup... just got one today for 2017 in WA State. Such BS. Thank you for writing this!!

    • profile image

      Jeremy 15 months ago

      Just got one for 2017 in IL. thanks for posting this, it seemed odd that I was sending state money to CA....

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      Herman 16 months ago

      Jerks are still at it nearing the end of 2016

      As its been stated here and on other websites. You can get these posters FREE from the government.

    • profile image

      Rob 21 months ago

      Yeap, just got this scam letter as well, I'm in Florida.

    • profile image

      Kyle Senger 2 years ago

      Yes! these posters are free online however please note you must post them in COLOR and of the size listed on the government website some of which are larger than 8 1/2 x 11. We own two businesses and just did the math last week. Having the required posters printed by Fed-Ex and laminated would cost us approximately $70 and then we would need to keep track and change any of the information as the government releases new rules and laws. That and the total count of posters is around 8-10 which makes for a very cluttered break room wall. Therefore we opted to just order the poster as it does look much nicer than the alternative 8-10 individual postings. Just saying weigh all your options sometimes spending a little extra now will make your job easier in the long run.

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      Steve 2 years ago

      Be sure to return the note in their envelope. That way they have to pay the mail fee. I did, however, send $1 in Monopoly money.

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      Kathy 2 years ago

      The notice looks very official. The thing that made suspicious though was that it was addressed to me as company owner/manager, and I am not the owner/manager. It seems like an official notice would be address to the real owner. I'm glad I searched online to see that this really is a scam!

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      Mike Smith 2 years ago

      They have called me in a very heavy handed sales pitch. I told them too F___OFF and hung up.

      Letters keep coming? A__ HOLES.

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      matt 2 years ago

      The just popped me for $550.00 . now I know I can get all of the posters online.

    • profile image

      taylor 2 years ago

      Yes thanks for the article, has anyone sought legal action towards personnel concepts?

    • profile image

      Garciarf 3 years ago

      2nd year in a row getting them. The kicker: I don't even own a business.

    • profile image

      Kamryn 3 years ago

      Finding this post has anrewsed my prayers

    • profile image

      Heloise 3 years ago

      My prolebm was a wall until I read this, then I smashed it.