Jack and Lisa* had just returned from a Home & Garden Show and were greatly impressed with a paving product showcased by a local provider. Not wasting any time, they called the company into their home to provide an estimate and, after taking some measurements and drawing up a contract, the company requested a $650 deposit for the paving product. Jack and Lisa wrote the cheque and were looking forward to the next step in the process – installation. That step never came.
For months, the couple tried contacting the company without a response. Feeling like they might be getting ripped off, the couple called the company’s head office, where a representative told them they would need to send in the original contract to recover their deposit. The couple provided it the very next day, but no deposit refund came.
Finally Jack and Lisa had had enough and contacted Consumer Protection BC. “They suggested that we start by sending a registered letter, which requires a signature upon delivery, to the head office to officially cancel the contract,” says Jack. When the couple still hadn’t received a response, Consumer Protection BC stepped in. The company was informed of their obligation under the Business Practices & Consumer Protection Act to refund the consumer for services not provided, and within 15 days of the consumer giving official notice of cancellation.
The final result? Jack and Lisa received their deposit back. “We are more than happy with the result,” says Jack. “It felt like we had someone on our side. We still think we would have never had that money back if it hadn’t been for Consumer Protection BC.”
*Name changed to protect the privacy of the individuals involved
Interested in more information?
This is a real story of a consumer who came to us for help. In this situation, the type of contract is called a future performance contract and Consumer Protection BC is responsible for regulating specific parts of future performance contracts in BC – including consumer cancellation rights and what information must be included in the contract.
For more information about your rights and responsibilities when it comes to future performance contracts and other kinds of regulated contracts, please visit our consumer contracts page on our website. If you are interested in reading more consumer stories, please read our 2015 Annual Report.
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6 thoughts on “Jack and Lisa’s story: paving the way to a consumer refund”
In the above and all similar cases, the business trying to rip off these consumers should be fully identified to all of us with name, location and the names of individuals who were committing this unacceptable behaviour so that we can adequately protect ourselves against such scam artists!
Hi Rolf, wanting to know the name of the company and other details is a legitimate request and we get why you want to know. That being said, we are not going to share that information here and here are the reasons.
We are a regulator and our goal is to correct marketplace behaviour, not be punitive. We work with a business first to give them a chance to fix things. With this story, while the business was off side initially, they ultimately came into compliance with the law voluntarily. We didn’t have to take any formal enforcement actions. (So you know, when we do take formal actions, we do publish that information on our website.)
The purpose of sharing this story is to give people an idea of what we do as an organization and more importantly, help inform others about their consumer rights. I hope this information helps but if you have more questions or you want to talk more about it, we are here.
What if a moving company doesn’t offer you any insurance, shows you the contract after they have loaded all your stuff on the truck, point out where you need to initial (makes whole process very slick/smooth, you don’t notice you are being scammed, you actually think: wow great job”
Part of the initials on contract is beside the 500$ deductible.
They make you initial the ‘we don’t unload truck at destination until we’ve received payment’, proceed to have cause an accident, destroy most of the furniture in truck. They did not inform me until the truck arrived, 10 days late, informed of accident by drivers (this was cross province move by Vega Line Moving) at destination.
I feel robbed by this company, they are offering 1500 on > 14000 claim, what happened to 500$ deductible?
Hi Manon, thank you for leaving us a comment here. Do you live in BC now and is the company based in BC? If so please feel free to contact us at toll free number 1-888-564-9963. We would like to get more details from you. Alternatively, our email is email@example.com.
What an informative post. This is something that I have been searching for. Glad I found this.
Hi Nicole! Happy to hear you enjoyed the post.