Two home repair companies have to pay $50,000 each for violating state consumer laws.
In North Carolina, consumers have the right to cancel most contracts from door-to-door sales or in-home soliciations within three days of signing the agreement.
In 2008, Attorney General Roy Cooper's office filed lawsuits against the Window Pros, a replacement window company in Statesville, and H.A.R.D. Top Asphalt Maintenance, a paving contractor in Pender County, for violating that law. Last week, Wake County Superior Court Judge Michael R. Morgan signed permanent injunctions against both companies.
Cooper had alleged that H.A.R.D Top targeted senior citizens, sometimes paving a driveway before the home owner authorized the work and then demanding immediate payment.
Under the judgment, the company must now wait four days after a contract is signed before beginning any work. They also must meet all local ordinances and paving industry standards.
The Window Pros were accused of making it hard for customers to cancel contracts, requiring that canceled contracts be notarized and threatening to sue. Under terms of its judgment the company must adhere to state law on canceling contracts and make sure that all its sales agents know the law.
The money both companies must pay will go to consumer refunds and education.
N.C. law gives consumers three days to cancel certain purchases or transactions even after they have signed a contract and paid. The law does no require that canceled contract be notarized.
The three-day right to cancel does not apply to:
Sales for less than $25
Sales made entirely over the phone or through the mail
Sales or rentals of real estate
Sales of insurance or securities
Sales made after negotiations at the seller's normal place of business
Sales made at a permanent retail shop