Pa. AG Hammers Contractor with Failure to Finish Jobs

June 6, 2005

Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett announced that a Cambria County home improvement contractor is barred from conducting business in the state until more than $6,000 is returned to consumers who hired him to perform various home improvement projects that he never started. The contractor will also pay $3,000 in fines and investigation costs.

Corbett said a legal agreement was reached with his Bureau of Consumer Protection and Kevin W. James, individually, and doing business as K. James Roofing and Remodeling, of Johnstown, Cambria County.

Investigators said James through July 2004 violated the state’s Consumer Protection Law by failing to honor the contracts that he entered into with homeowners located in Cambria and Somerset counties.

In one case, a Somerset County couple hired James to replace the roof on their home in Davidsville. The couple paid James a down payment of nearly $2,500 and was told that work on the roof would begin immediately.

James reportedly failed to start any of the repairs as promised in their signed contract. The couple stated that repeated calls to the contractor went unanswered and when they finally did reach him, he reportedly indicated that he “had no money” and that he “was not going to jail.”

In another consumer complaint, a Cambria County consumer said he wrote James a check for $527 to perform remodeling work on his home immediately. The consumer said James failed to show-up to start the repairs and after numerous telephone calls informed the homeowner that his money would be returned. According to the consumer, James claimed that the consumer’s refund check was in the mail. The homeowner said he never received a refund after James cashed his check.

“The allegations against Mr. James are serious,” Corbett said. “He’s accused of breaking state law and violating the trust of several consumers by accepting payment to perform various jobs and then refusing to deliver on those promises or return consumers’ money.”

The court agreement requires James to:

– Forfeit his right to conduct business in Pennsylvania as a home improvement contractor until $6,000 in restitution is paid to six consumers.

– Pay $3,000 in fines and the Commonwealth’s investigation costs.

– Permanently cease violating Pennsylvania’s Consumer Protection Law.

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