Southwestern Ontario Contractor Fined for Unfair Practices and Failure to Refund Consumer Deposit
Convicted - Sheldon E. Benson and Benco Concrete Inc.
Location - Kitchener
Description of Offence - Benco Concrete Inc. provided consumers with a contract that did not include information about the consumers' right to a 10-day cooling-off period when signing a contact at their home. Mr. Benson did not refund the consumers' deposit after they cancelled the contract.
Date of Offence - On or about April 27, 2015 - two counts of unfair practice; between May 26, 2015 and January 11, 2016 - two counts of failure to refund
Date of Conviction - October 26, 2017at the Ontario Court of Justice in Kitchener by Her Worship Magoulas
The court imposed the following against Mr. Benson:
- Fine of $250 for not providing a proper contract and $1,000 for failure to refund
- One-year probation with terms of restitution
- Payment of $1,068 to the consumers in restitution
The court imposed the following against Benco Concrete Inc.:
- Fine of $500 for not providing a proper contract and $2,000 for failure to refund
- Consumers from a Kitchener household entered into an agreement with Benco Concrete Inc. for concrete driveway work on April 27, 2015 and paid a deposit of $1,068. They cancelled the agreement within the 10-day cooling-off period, which is their right under the Consumer Protection Act, 2002.
- Mr. Benson, as the sole operator of Benco Concrete Inc., had provided the consumers with a contract that did not include required language about rights under the act.
- Mr. Benson kept the deposit despite the consumers' multiple attempts to cancel the contract.
- The act empowers the court to order offenders to pay compensation or make restitution to victims.
- In cases where consumers sign a contract for $50 or more, at their home, the act provides for a 10-day cooling-off period to cancel a home renovation contract without cancellation fees.
- Consumer Protection Ontario reminds consumers to:
- Ontario's Consumer Protection Act, 2002 provides for fines of up to $250,000 for corporations per charge and $50,000 per charge for individuals convicted of offences. It also provides for jail terms of up to two years less a day for each offence for individuals.