Called in a franchise of a large national company to repair possible breach in home. Employed of franchise came and during inspection meddled with 3 things so repairs would appear to be needed. He then went out and picked up an undocumented worker to do labor. At day's end they left a dangerous hazard for the homeowners. The code called for specific ways to make the hazard safe and unreachable. None were done. Elderly person cut to shreds and broke teeth. Later that night 2 other contractors inspected and stated No replies were needed and they noticed the altered areas which had been used to prove repairs were needed. Would this situation show an intent to defraud ?
Briefly: 1- You must not be an attorney and there are no consumer protection acts in CA that automatically triple damages; 2- The two main consumer protection statutes in CA are Bus & Prof code 17200 and Civil Code section 1750 et seq. and again, neither give triple damages; 3- One case that is published says "roof shingles" are not a consumer product; 4- The CLRA (CC 1750) specifically excludes real estate as an item covered. With regard to the "tinkering" maybe "services" are covered? With regard to abuse of an elder (welfare and institutions codes) there may indeed be some potential for tripling damages? 5- Intent to defraud is a whole other thing and not always necessary under consumer protection statutes...
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