The Texas Attorney General’s office has filed a lawsuit accusing an Austin company of selling fraudulent discount health card plans to pregnant women. The lawsuit claims that Austin-based AHCO Direct, also known as Affordable HealthCare Options, sold fake discount cards to uninsured pregnant women that promised to cover up to 60% of maternity-related costs. They are accused of multiple violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. The cards were marketed to uninsured pregnant women via Google ads. The company’s Web site states that a large number of health care providers accept their MaternityCard, which it said would lower the cost of doctors’ visits, sonograms, prescriptions and other prenatal care. The plan cost $199 to enroll and $99 a month. But MaternityCard users who visited the doctors on the company’s preferred provider list were told the card wouldn’t be accepted. When customers complained and tried to cancel the card, they faced a $250 cancellation fee. Texas law prohibits vendors from baiting consumers with promises and failing to deliver on their guarantee, according to Attorney General Abbott.
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