Pa. A.G. Obtains Reimbursement for Home Improvement Fraud Victims

July 12, 2004

Pennsylvania Attorney General Jerry Pappert announced that a former Monroe County home improvement contractor will return nearly $15,000 to consumers following complaints that he failed to start projects that he was paid to complete, performed shoddy work and/or failed to inform consumers of their right to cancel the contracts as required by law.

Pappert said his Bureau of Consumer Protection entered into a consent agreement with Michael Evans, individually, and doing business as Evans Construction Company, formerly of P.O. Box 485, Pocono Pines, Monroe County. The consent decree resolves a lawsuit that was filed by Pappert’s office, accusing Evans and his business of violating Pennsylvania’s Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law.

According to the lawsuit, Evans accepted consumers’ deposits or payments for various home improvement projects including roof repairs and vinyl siding installation. After the lawsuit was filed, additional consumers came forward with similar claims that the defendant failed to perform the contracted work or performed work that was considered substandard. In both instances, consumers said that the defendant denied their repeated requests to complete the projects or refund their money.

Shortly after the lawsuit was filed, the defendants reportedly ceased operating in Monroe County and failed to provide consumers with a forwarding address or telephone number. The Commonwealth sought and obtained a default judgment against the defendants who failed to respond to the complaint.

Evans was located in Luzerne County following a tip from a consumer. The defendant agreed to settle the Commonwealth’s legal action.

Under the terms of the consent agreement, the defendants are required to:

– Pay $14,820 to seven consumers located in Monroe County.

– Pay $1,300 in civil penalties and investigation costs.

– Make repairs to one consumer’s home.

– Permanently cease operating in violation of the Consumer Protection Law.

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