CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey on Friday announced his office has filed a complaint alleging a Wisconsin-based business and its manager violated the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act.
The complaint, which was filed in Cabell Circuit Court, alleges Trio Alarm LLC and its manager, Tyler Ignatowski, engaged in unfair and deceptive sales practices.
“Our office works tirelessly to protect consumers from businesses who violate the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act,” Morrisey said in a statement. “These laws apply to every business, regardless of size.”
The complaint alleges Trio employees went door-to-door to sell home security systems, despite the company lacking a license to sell these systems in West Virginia. Employees then allegedly used several fraudulent, high-pressure sales tactics to deceive consumers.
The complaint says the AG's office and the City of Huntington began receiving complaints about the company in November. It says the AG's office received at least eight formal complaints about Trio.
The company allegedly told its employees to target homes with signs or stickers indicating it was already protected by another company’s security system. Trio employees would allegedly then try to deceive the homeowner by claiming Trio had taken over their existing company, or by claiming they were from the homeowner’s current provider and were there to “upgrade” the system.
The complaint states that as a result of these alleged fraudulent practices, consumers unknowingly entered into new agreements for their home security. Customers allegedly did not realize they were deceived until they received monthly statements from both their former provider and Trio. Consumers were then allegedly told they could not rescind their contract with Trio unless they paid a termination fee.
“Homeowners should always carefully review contracts before signing them and never feel pressured by high-intensity sales tactics,” Morrisey said. “It is always important to do your homework on a company before signing a contract for a service or good.”
Morrisey's office is being represented by Assistant Attorney General R. Stephen Jarrell. The complaint has been assigned to Circuit Judge Jane Hustead
Cabell Circuit Court case number: 15-C-383