CHARLESTON – West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey's office has filed a complaint for injunction, consumer restitution, and other relief against Illinois-based cookware company NuWave LLC.
NuWave makes, markets, and sells a wide range of kitchen supplies by to consumers across West Virginia, primarily through television ads.
In the suit, filed in the Kanawha Circuit Court, Morrisey accuses NuWave of violating the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act (WVCCPA), the Telemarketing Act, and the Prizes and Gifts Act.
The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division filed suit after receiving multiple reports from various consumers claiming NuWave engaged in numerous unscrupulous tactics in the promotion of its products, such as the Precision Induction Cooktop (PIC).
Morrisey points specifically to the legality of NuWave’s Buy-One-Get-One-Free (BOGO) promotional offer.
“It appears that the free product was not free as represented,” Morrisey said. “NuWave allegedly added shipping and processing charges to the second product that were not clearly and conspicuously disclosed and that greatly exceeded the actual cost of shipping to NuWave.”
Additionally, the suit points to other services of questionable value, such as the company’s high pressure sales pitch that resulted in the unknowing purchase of additional products and monthly credit card charges on behalf of other sellers.
The suit also claims that the telemarketing sales were conducted by outside vendors who were not registered as bonded telemarketers with the West Virginia State Tax Department.
The complaint asks for civil penalties of $5,000 per violation, and for NuWave to cover investigation and litigation costs related to the suit.
Morrisey asks the Court to require NuWave issue refunds to all West Virginia consumers who purchased NuWave and non-NuWave products from telemarketers and in connection with the BOGO offer, as well as provide restitution for each affected consumer.