West Caldwell's Tri-State Construction Cited by NJ Division of Consumer Affairs, Along with 25 Other Home Improvement Contractors, on Wednesday
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNOW.com
WEST CALDWELL, NJ - Ermal Rustemlliu, owner of Tri-State Construction in West Caldwell was cited, Wednesday, for noncompliance with the state's home improvement contractor's codes. The business primarily does work with commercial and residential painting, construction and remodeling, roofing repair and replacement. Tri-State was cited for not being registered with the state, while continuing to solicit home improvement work.
The New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs has been cracking down on non-compliant home improvement contractors and on Wednesday issued Notices of Violation to 26 contractors, including Tri-State Construction. The state is seeking a total of $251,602 in civil penalties and consumer restitution, based on complaints and referrals by consumers across New Jersey.
“The great majority of New Jersey’s registered home improvement contractors are proud to provide honest, quality service to their clients,”
All but three of the contractors cited today have been directed to pay a total of $153,582 in restitution to consumers. The restitution amounts range from $200 to $27,400, and represent the amounts allegedly owed to consumers due to the performance of shoddy work, or the failure to start and/or finish work for which consumers had pre-paid.
In addition, the Division is citing all 26 contractors for various violations of New Jersey’s Contractors’ Registration Act. For example, 16 are cited for soliciting home improvement work despite having failed to register with the Division, as required by law. Others are cited for violations such as failure to provide consumers with detailed, written contracts, which are required by law for all home improvement contracts costing more than $500. The State has assessed a total of $97,750 in civil penalties against the 26 contractors, in addition to the assessed consumer restitution.
“Including the contractors we’re citing today, thus far in 2014,
Today’s action follows the Division’s July 16 announcement of Notices of Violation to 68 home improvement contractors, seeking a total of $1,046,978 in consumer restitution and $276,250 in civil penalties. Home improvement complaints are typically the largest consumer complaint category the Division of Consumer Affairs receives each year, as was the case in 2013, when the Division received 1,434 consumer complaints about home improvement contractors.
Each of the contractors received a Notice of Violation. They have the opportunity to contest the alleged violation, or the opportunity to correct the violation by desisting from any practices in violation of the law, paying a civil penalty and/or consumer restitution where required, and submitting an application for registration, if not registered.
OCT. 1 CITATIONS
The full list of those cited today are as follows:
Registered Businesses Cited for Other Violations
Tips for Consumers, When Hiring a Contractor
Investigators Joseph Iasso, Loretta Creggett, Michelle Davis, Michael Meola and Waiman Yee, led by Supervising Investigator Jen Micco of the Division of Consumer Affairs Office of Consumer Protection, conducted these investigations. Deputy Attorneys General from the Consumer Fraud Prosecution Section within the Division of Law represented the State in these actions.
Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse, can file a complaint online with the State Division of Consumer Affairs or by calling 1-800-242-5846 or 973-504-6200.
The Division will continue to take such actions against allegedly unregistered and/or otherwise non-compliant home improvement contractors throughout the year, and will announce them on a quarterly basis, in order to protect and inform New Jersey’s consumers.