A Dayton fence company is facing one of seven consumer-protection lawsuits filed against businesses across the state in the final days of the year by Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost’s office.
“Misleading and unlawful business practices — especially those that take direct aim at customers’ wallets — will not be overlooked,” Yost said. “Ohioans work hard for their money, and we work year-round to protect it.”
B&R Fence & More LLC and its owner, Robert Wood, are accused of taking $12,500 from homeowners who made payments for fences that were never constructed, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court that alleges multiple violations of the Consumer Sales Practices Act and the Home Solicitation Sales Act.
“In some instances, after receiving payment from consumers for fence removal, repair and/or installation services, defendants failed to perform any work, and failed to refund any of the consumers’ payments,” the lawsuit alleged. In other cases after receiving deposits, the company “performed some work contracted for, but then abandoned the worksite without returning or refunding any of the consumers’ payments.”
The Dayton Daily News was unable to reach Wood for comment. A phone number for the business has been disconnected and a social media page for the fencing contractor indicates the business is permanently closed. No attorney of record was listed for the company nor Wood.
The lawsuit asks for a declaratory judgment and for the defendant to pay restitution plus damages to affected consumers, to be barred from business until restitution is paid and to cover court costs. It also asks the court to assess a civil penalty of up to $25,000 for each violation.
Yost’s office also sued a Springfield contractor, MH&D Construction and its owner, Michael Collett of Springboro, who was accused of taking $31,600 from consumers for home improvement projects that were never completed.
MH&D Construction was established Jan. 19, 2021, as a limited liability company, according to a certificate from the Ohio Secretary of State’s Office.
The lawsuit filed Thursday in Clark County Common Pleas Court cites two violations of the Consumer Sales Practices Act and one violation of the Home Solicitation Sales Act.
“After receiving payment, defendants sometimes began work but failed to complete the work,” the lawsuit alleged.
The business also “provided incomplete, shoddy and substandard services to consumers and then failed to correct such work” and “refused to refund consumers’ deposits or payments despite consumers’ requests for refunds,” the document stated.
No attorney of record was listed in court documents, and no phone number for the business nor Collett was available.
The other five lawsuits involve two Columbus driveway repair and installation businesses, the owners of Cincinnati-area appliance supply companies, a Hilliard caterer, and a Heath furniture store.
Ohioans who suspect unfair or deceptive business practices can contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at www.OhioProtects.org or 800-282-0515.
About the Author
Jen Roppel Balduf covers breaking news for the Dayton Daily News. She earned a bachelor of science in journalism degree from Ohio University and also writes for the Journal-News, Springfield News-Sun and Dayton.com.