Attorney General Jackley Warns of Hailstorm Scams
PIERRE, SD -Attorney General Marty Jackley is asking South Dakota consumers to proceed with caution when making home and auto repairs as a result of the recent hail storms that have plagued the state. Based on several inquiries, the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division is urging consumers to take the necessary steps to evaluate a business before agreeing to a repair job. Consumers who need repairs may be the target of unscrupulous business practices.
Here are a few suggestions when choosing a business to perform repairs:
- Do not be pressured into a quick agreement.
- Ask to see proof of insurance and/or bond.
- Request a written contract specifying in detail the work to be done and the agreed upon price.
- Be cautious if cash-only terms are required.
- Do not make full payment before the job is satisfactorily completed.
- Ask for local references and call these references to make sure they were satisfied.
- If time permits get bids from other companies to compare prices.
- Consumers typically have a three day right to cancel on door-to-door sales contracts.
Sellers must provide the consumer with a copy of the contract or receipt at the time of the sale. This receipt must show the date of the sale, the name and address of the merchant, and a statement to the buyer of his or her right to cancel the contact within three days. After proper cancellation, the seller has 10 days to refund your money.
Consumers should ask to see the business' current South Dakota tax license. State law requires all persons selling products or services to have a current South Dakota sales or contractors' excise tax license. To verify that the license is valid you can contact the SD Department of Revenue at 1-800-829-9188. Remember that even though they may have this license it does not mean that you will be able to locate them once the work is done.
Contact the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Office at 1-800-300-1986 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or concerns regarding questionable business practices.