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Post date: January 15 2004

Lawsuit Filed Against Capital District Gutter Service

Attorney General Spitzer today announced a lawsuit against a Capital District contractor for shoddy work and refusing to honor warranties.

James M. Lewis, owner of Colonie Seamless Gutters, was sued for deceptive business practices, false advertising, fraud and other violations of consumer protection laws.

"This office will ensure that commitments made by contractors to consumers are fulfilled and that representations are forthright and honest," Spitzer said. "We will take aggressive action against those home repair companies that abuse their relationship with customers with shoddy work and false promises."

Colonie Seamless Gutters solicits customers in Albany, Rensselaer and Schenectady counties to perform drain and gutter services. According to the lawsuit, the company advertises as a "gutter specialist" and represents that its quality seamless gutters will not leak. Customers are further enticed with warranties ranging from one to 15 years.

Spitzer’s office has received approximately 20 complaints from homeowners in the past four years alleging that the work of Colonie Seamless Gutters is frequently shoddy and defective. In many instances, its gutters and drains begin to leak almost immediately after installation, causing water damage to consumers’ decks, porches and basements.

Consumers also have complained that Colonie Seamless Gutters fails to or refuses to honor its warranty and often fails to make refunds. When consumers call with problems, Colonie Seamless Gutters often fails to return repeated phone calls or schedules repairs and then fails to show up.

In filing the lawsuit, Spitzer seeks a court order requiring Colonie Seamless Gutters to pay restitution and damages to aggrieved consumers who received defective and shoddy services and materials which have not been repaired or replaced, or who retained the services of other contractors to make repairs. The lawsuit also seeks civil penalties for the company’s violations of the law and costs.

In addition, Spitzer’s office seeks a court order barring Lewis from engaging in the gutter- and drain-cleaning and repair business unless he posts a $25,000 bond.

Individuals who want to file a complaint against Colonie Seamless Gutters should contact Spitzer’s consumer help line at (800) 771-7755.