Employment Options (MEO) specializes in Work at Home employment help for those receiving SSDI or SSI in the SSA Free Ticket to Work Program.
CEO Paula Vieillet has been helping job seekers with disabilities find remote work for over a decade. Her company partners with leading Work at Home employers across the nation who love to hire her diverse and loyal clients.
One of the most common questions that job seekers have is – “How Do I Find Legitimate Work at Home Jobs and Avoid Scams?”
Avoiding Work at Home Job Scams: Tips for Job Seekers and Those with Disabilities and Other Challenges
The Work at Home industry has transformed itself overnight and it is more important than ever to really screen the company and the offer before accepting any position. This is especially true for job seekers with disabilities who may be more susceptible to scam artists because of their necessity to work from home or special scheduling needs.
These seven tips can help you avoid being a victim of scams in Work at Home job opportunities.
1). Beware of Upfront Money Requests
If a company or website asks for any money upfront, even if it is $5.00, we recommend that you do not do it. They will send you something for the fee, but usually, it is not anything that is going to bring you consistent income or help you become self-sufficient. There are numerous legitimate W2 employers with good jobs in the industry that will not require payment from you to work. When obtaining a typical Work from Home job, the only money that a job seeker ‘may’ spend is for something such as a background or credit check or items like a special headset.
2). Reject The Unbelievably Good Job Pitch
If it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. Some companies will say that you can make $1,000 a day and someone probably did make that in one day; but what they don’t tell you is that they didn’t make any more money for 4 – 6 months. Look for Work from Home positions that offer a regular schedule, consistent hours, and regular payroll.
3). Ensure A Website Has Company Contact and Job Information
If you find a company that you like, you should be able to also find a website where they list an address or phone number. They should talk about their company and what types of jobs they offer and if they are Full or Part Time. The common remote companies will have a section about the equipment needed and what the qualifications are. It should state if you are going to be an employee (W2) or an independent contractor (1099), and if you are going to be paid hourly, by a commission, or a combination. The website should be as professional as if you were applying to Target, JCPenney, or Walmart. If it is not, we recommend you keep searching for a more professional, viable option.
4). Check the Reviews
You can easily search the Internet for reviews on remote employers and if customers or employees have reported many complaints against them. You could Google or search, for example, the company’s name and the word scam to see if anything populates positively or negatively about the remote company. In addition, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) still functions as a good resource for objective ratings. Be sure to ask for their notes on the company and not just the ratings. (To find local BBB info: Click Here)
5). Pay Attention To The Job Description
Certain jobs offered by Work at Home companies tend to have a higher rate of scams. Common sense is sometimes the best approach. Envelope Stuffing and Assembly Work is suspicious because it is typically offered at a high pay per piece rate, like $1 an envelope. However, established companies who provide these services do the same work for pennies per piece. The Work at Home industry is booming and unlike a decade ago, there are now many reputable companies across many industries and career levels offering remote positions.
6). Free Employment Services For Those on SSDI/SSI
If you receive SSDI or SSI disability benefits and qualify for the voluntary Ticket To Work Program, you can actually receive free job placement assistance to help you screen out employment scams. Learn more about the Ticket To Work Program and how it protects benefits here.
7). Pay Attention To Payment
Legitimate Work at Home companies are upfront about their payment process. Some companies may hire independent contractors and issue 1099’s, but most of the national and reputable Work at Home companies are W-2 companies, who not only offer competitive hourly wages, but often may also offer health benefits, 401K, paid training, and career advancement for full time employees.
Be sure you understand how they plan to pay you and if you will be an employee (W2) or 1099 (contractor). A W2 employer takes out taxes for you out of your paycheck and a 1099 position you are responsible to pay your own estimated taxes for your job.
The safest Work at Home positions to apply for usually are those with a W2 company or 1099 jobs who pay an hourly wage (not per piece) and offer a specific schedule in the job description or during the interview.
These are just a few tips to help assess whether a Work at Home company is a scam or is legitimate. Taking the time now can be the saving grace later!