Parents should be wary of child modeling scams

July 7, 2011 7:50:10 PM PDT
On the surface, child modeling seems like it could be cool! Eyewitness News went to a legit casting call and met Mies Hora, a dad who has "not" been scammed, whose son Hudson has been in the business for a few months.

"It's a major commitment going through what you have to go through to get here. We just spent three hours getting here," he said.

He cautions it's "work," and then there's the waiting, and waiting, and waiting. It's a tough business, though for some, a dream. Then there's Ricky Mora and his daughter Lesly, whose story is a nightmare.

Ricky and his little girl were stopped in a Long Island mall by a modeling scout fraud with a clipboard.

It was $1,800 for a photo shoot, handed to dad as "slides," something that no one in the real industry has used in a decade. His daughter never got one job, and Ricky never saw his money again.

"Don't get scammed, it's not cheap!" he warns other parents.

The most tragic thing about this is the best intentioned mommies and daddies get sucked in thinking they are doing the best thing for their kids.

Judy Goss has been a hugely successful model, agent, and author. And, as her book states, if your kids have what it takes to model, you should seek out a licensed modeling agency to represent them. They don't ask for money. If someone comes to you: be skeptical.

"I've had a mother who spent 10 grand and was told they'd make her daughter a star. Well, if all we had to do was to pay money to make our kids stars, a lot more people would do it!" Goss said.

Something to think about the Better Business Bureau gets thousands of complaints about bogus modeling contracts a year.

"You should not be investing in them, it should be the other way around!" said Claire Rosenzweig, of