Jon Campisi Apr. 10, 2012, 7:08am

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office has announced that it has filed consumer protection lawsuits against six western Pennsylvania home improvement contractors.

In an April 5 press release, Attorney General Linda Kelly announced that her office filed suit against three contracting firms from Erie, Pa. and three from the Pittsburgh area.

The civil actions accuse the companies of violating the state’s Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act, which requires home improvement contractors operating in the commonwealth to register with the Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, maintain minimum insurance coverage and use contracts that contain important information about home projects, including the start and completion dates, a description of work being performed and consumers’ rights under the law.

The law also requires home improvement contractors to disclose whether they have had their licenses suspended or revoked by any state or municipal agency or whether they have been barred from any government-funded home improvement program.

The six contracting firms who are subject to the litigation are Affordable Plumbing, Rapid Rooter, Knight’s Concrete, Joseph M. Bogaski Contracting and Accurate Designs, Horniacek Contracting Inc. and R.S. Sippos Associates.

The first three contractors were sued in the Erie County Court of Common Pleas and the last three in the Allegheny Common Pleas Court.

The news release gave the following breakdown of the individual lawsuits:

Affordable Plumbing was sued because the contracting firm is not registered as a contractor, and because its owner, Adam Frano, is accused of using a non-compliant contract and failing to inform customers about their three-day right to cancel a contract.

The lawsuit against Rapid Rooter claims that contractor Troy Parrett failed to register as a home improvement contractor and of conducting business as an unregistered contractor. He, too, is accused of failing to warn customers of their right to cancel a contract.

Similarly, the Knight’s Concrete suit alleges that owner Terry Smith conducted business without the proper registration, that he failed to provide consumers with their rights regarding contract cancellation and that he failed to limit down payments, failed to perform contracted services and failed to register the fictitious names under which he conducted business with the Department of State.

Joseph M. Bogaski Contracting and Accurate Designs stands accused of failing to register as a home improvement contractor and failing to perform contract work or completing work at a poor performance level.

The company is also accused of accepting deposits from consumers that were in excess of the amount permitted by law.

Horniacek Contracting is accused of engaging in activity similar to that of Joseph M. Bogaski Contracting.

R.S. Sippos Associates allegedly abandoned jobs and refused to provide refunds for unfinished work. The contracting firm is also accused of completing work in a “shoddy unworkmanlike manner.”


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