The lawsuit accuses Daniel William Wells, doing business as Kelly Heating & Air Conditioning, of violating Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act and Home Solicitation Sales Act. Counts include failure to deliver, performing substandard or shoddy work, and failure to give consumers proper notice of their right to cancel a door-to-door sale.
“Most contractors do good work, but in this case we found a pattern of problems,” DeWine said. “We’re seeking reimbursement for consumers who didn’t get the services they paid for and an end to violations of state consumer laws.”
In the last two years, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office has received 10 complaints against Kelly Heating & Air Conditioning. In their complaints, consumers generally said that Kelly did shoddy or incomplete work, leaving them with leaky or malfunctioning furnaces or air conditioners. Consumers also said the owner would not return to correct the problems.
The Attorney General’s lawsuit, filed in the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court, seeks restitution for consumers, an end to any violations of Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act and Home Solicitation Sales Act, and civil penalties.
To avoid problems when hiring a home improvement contractor, consumers should:
• Research a business. Check for complaints on file with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and the Better Business Bureau. Also conduct an Internet search with the name of the business and words such as “reviews” or “complaints.”
• Get multiple estimates. Be wary if one estimate is significantly lower or higher than others.
• Get everything in writing. Carefully review a contract before signing it. If a sales representative makes a verbal promise or claim that is not included in the contract, ask to get the information in writing.
• Understand cancellation rights. Consumers generally have a three-day right to cancel a contract that results from a door-to-door solicitation, and sellers generally should not start any work before this three-day period ends.
Consumers who suspect unfair or deceptive practices should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov or 800-282-0515.
A copy of the lawsuit is available on the Ohio Attorney General's website.