Negative option schemes like MWI are a pain but if you handle them quickly and correctly, they don't have to grow into a super-migraine. Here are the steps we recommend:

1. Notify your credit card company

You should immediately call your credit card company and tell them you want to dispute the charge, pursuant to the Fair Credit Billing Act, which requires banks and credit card companies to allow consumers to dispute a charge by demanding a proof of purchase.

If a company cannot provide the bank or credit card company with proof that the product or service was actually ordered by the consumer, the bank or credit card company does not have to charge the consumer's account. You will most likely be asked to fill out and sign a simple form. Follow their directions. Fill out the form, make a copy, then mail the form to the bank. Keep the copy.

You have only 60 days to dispute the charge in writing. Don't waste it.

2. Notify the company

Send a certified, return receipt requested letter (very important) to the company. We have suggested language you can use. Make a copy. Keep the copy. When the delivery receipt is returned to you, keep it too.

Don't try to email or call the company. It is a waste of time and not legally binding.

3. Avoiding MWI in the Future - Who Did It?

Most victims of MWI Essentials don't know how the company got their account number, although the leading candidate at the moment is Orbitz. VistaPrint.com also comes to mind. Mary thinks Copa Hair Products may be involved somehow. Other suspects include Victoria Secrets, Snapfish, Steam Buggy, Ultimate Chopper, Driveway Patrol, OrangeGlo and GoodTime Videos.

For more suspects, look through the consumer complaints we've received.