What are my rights as a consumer regarding a potential consumer fraud/poor workmanship/negligence/breach of contract case?

I paid a contractor (an alleged licensed plumber) to install a gas furnace and he did a subpar job which consists of a questionable "brand new unit" leaking after 3 months resulting in repairs by another plumber because the contractor did not honor his part to make the repairs. Furthermore, the contractor did not pull the permits for installation as promised..when that got resolved, the unit failed inspection twice! I am done allowing him to redeem himself and convinced that he is incompetent and believe I have been a victim of consumer fraud! I have demanded a FULL refund of all monies paid including reimbursement for the work the other plumber did as well as costs related to cleaning the water damage to my carpet from the leaking unit. The contractor has refused to oblige! What now?

Linden, NJ -

Attorney Answers (2)

James Lee Fant

James Lee Fant

Litigation Lawyer - Springfield, NJ

You should contact an attorney who is experienced in handling contract and consumer fraud matter. There are specific regulations that govern home improvement contractors. If a home improvement contractor violates these regulations or otherwise engages in fraudulent conduct, you may be entitled to treble (i.e. triple damages) and attorney’s fees. We offer free consultations.

Michael T Millar

Michael T Millar

Business Attorney - Toms River, NJ

I agree that you should speak with an attorney who practices consumer protection law.

Plumbers are required to be licensed.

Check with the NJ Division of Consumer Affairs to see if this contractor is properly licensed.

A town is not permitted to issue permits to an unlicensed contractor. Thus, the fact that he failed to pull permits may indicate that he is not licensed.

If he held himself as licensed, he may committed an act of consumer fraud.

Note, however, that warranty issues are not necessarily consumer fraud.

This answer is for general education purposes only. It neither creates an attorney-client relationship nor... more

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A breach of contract means breaking a binding legal document by failing to satisfy the terms of the contract without a lawful reason.

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