Attorney General and the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs File Action Against Bergen County-Based Home Improvement Contractor
NEWARK –The Office of the Attorney General and the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs have filed an action against ABC Construction NJ, Inc., also known as ABC Construction, LLC and ABC Construction ("ABC Construction"), and its two owner/operators, for failing to complete contracted-for work, performing substandard work, damaging consumers' homes, and other alleged violations of state law.
"As a result of the many violations allegedly committed by ABC Construction, some homeowners have been left with unusable kitchens and bathrooms," Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman said. "We're taking action in response to such unlawful conduct and will do everything we can to obtain restitution for these homeowners and prevent future harm to others."
The State's eight-count Complaint, filed in State Superior Court in Hackensack, names Charleston J. Masterson of Bergenfield and Frankie Olandesi of Wyckoff, as defendants, along with the company. ABC Construction maintained business locations in Oradell and Bergenfield.
Among other things, ABC Construction allegedly damaged homes, started but did not finish bathroom and kitchen renovations, and started work without obtaining required permits, in addition to other violations of the Consumer Fraud Act, the Contractors' Registration Act, Contractor Registration Regulations, Home Improvement Regulations, and Advertising Regulations.
"The Division of Consumer Affairs is committed to finding and eliminating the bad actors in the state's home improvement industry," said Steve Lee, Acting Director of the State Division of Consumer Affairs. "Homeowners need to be assured that when they hire contractors for home improvements, that these consumers will get exactly what they pay for."
The alleged violations, set forth in the Complaint, include unconscionable commercial practices, and false promises and deception, among other things.
The Complaint alleges that the defendants:
- failed to begin or complete home improvement work on the agreed upon date or time period specified in contracts, or as otherwise represented;
- failed to provide timely written notice for any delay in the performance of home improvement work, as well as the dates or time periods within which such work would commence or be completed;
- performed home improvement work in a substandard manner, which required consumers to hire a second contractor to correct defendants' work;
- failed to perform home improvement work according to contract specifications and accepting payment for said work;
- began home improvement work and never returned to finish;
- left bathrooms and/or kitchens partially demolished and/or unusable;
- failed to deliver products that consumers had purchased, including, but not limited to, cabinets and tile;
- performed home improvements of poor or substandard quality and then failed to make the necessary corrective repairs;
- caused damage to consumers' homes while performing home improvement work and then failed to fix, clean or compensate for the damage;
- failed to appear at a consumer's home at the agreed upon time or at all;
- accepted consumers' payments and failed to provide the contracted-for home improvement work;
- failed to obtain the requisite permits to perform the contracted-for home improvement work;
- refused to issue refunds after defendants failed to perform the contracted-for home improvement work;
- failed to provide consumers with refunds after failing to complete the contracted-for home improvement work;
- failed to remove debris and equipment from consumers' homes and/or clean the jobsite; and
- failed to respond to consumers= telephone calls, inquiries and/or complaints in a timely manner or at all.
Investigator Jared O'Cone in the Division of Consumer Affairs Office of Consumer Protection conducted the investigation of this matter. This matter was referred to the Division by the Bergen County Consumer Affairs Office.
Deputy Attorney General Mark E. Critchley in the Consumer Fraud Prosecution Section of the Division of Law is representing the State in this matter.
Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse,
can file an online complaint with the State Division of Consumer Affairs by visiting
its website or by calling 1-800-242-5846 (toll free within New Jersey) or 973-504- 6200.
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