January 10, 2012
Door-to-Door Solicitation Do’s and Don’ts
It’s that time of the year, when door-to-door solicitations begin
to occur more frequently. School fundraisers, Girl Scout cookie
sales, and youth sports group fundraisers are just a few of the more
common neighborhood solicitations.
But how do you know when you should or shouldn’t answer the door?
And what’s legitimate or not?
The City of Arlington Police Department offers these tips:
- If you don’t feel comfortable or don’t want to answer the door,
then don’t. Tell them you are not interested through the door.
- If you are unsure if a solicitor is legitimate, ask for
identification verifying that they are employed by the company they
claim to work for. If they don’t have any I.D., don’t give them any
money and tell them to leave.
- Ask to see a solicitor’s license. City ordinance requires a
license for persons engaging in door-to-door selling. The license
should be carried by the salesperson and shall be submitted to any
police officer or citizen for examination upon request. Police
Records handles the application process and issues the license.
- Door-to-door selling is prohibited, by City ordinance, after 8 p.m.
unless there is a prior invitation from the occupant of said private
- If a solicitor refuses to leave after being asked to, or becomes
irate, shut the door. If they still don’t leave, call 911.
- If you don’t feel comfortable giving the solicitor any money
DON’T! Do not let anyone “guilt” you into giving them money or
buying their product.
- Do not believe stories such as “I live in your neighborhood”, or
“My car is broken down just around the corner.” If you don’t
recognize this person as one of your neighbors, they’re probably
not. If their car is truly broken down, offer to call 911 for them.
- At no time should you let any of these people in your house! Not
even to use the phone.
It’s important to listen to your “gut feeling” and don’t do anything
that makes you feel uncomfortable. Door-to-door solicitation is not
against the law as long as solicitors follow the law and City
Residents who don’t want any type of solicitation on their property
are encouraged to post a “No Soliciting” sign near the doorbell or
in plain sight at the front door to indicate that solicitations are
And remember; when in doubt always call 9-1-1.