AHS Perpetrates Fraud Upon Consumers
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE -- Chronological Series of Events
I signed an exclusive listing contract to sell my home with Coldwell Banker Real Estate in July 2010. It was strongly suggested that I incorporate a Coldwell Banker Home Protection Plan into the marketing strategy to sell my home. On August 12, 2010, I signed a contract for my Coldwell Banker Home Protection Plan that would be administered by American Home Shield (a/k/a AHS). On June 01, 2011, I called AHS and thus starts my nightmare.
I requested emergency air conditioning service as I noticed my a/c unit was seizing up and knew this could cause water problems. The AHS phone person stated that AHS will only take emergency requests if is a matter of health. I stated it was a matter of health as I was concerned about mold growth if the a/c unit leaked. The AHS phone representative advised me that I would then be contacted shortly by a service technician. AHS contacted me by email to assign Kenneth Buggay Mechanical to service my a/c unit. This email from AHS did state that I could expect to hear from this contractor during normal business hours to schedule a mutually agreeable appointment time. As AHS provided the phone number for the contractor, I decided to call to reiterate the emergency service call. When I called Kenneth Buggay Mechanical, I was informed that I could not have emergency service as Kenneth Buggay Mechanical had only one (1) employee. I now knew that I had been duped by the AHS phone representative.
First Misrepresentation was deceiving me by allowing me to believe I would be receiving emergency air conditioning service.
Kenneth Buggay Mechanical did not arrive until 4:30 pm the following day on June 02, 2011 over 30 hours from the time I placed my call to AHS for emergency service. Although the a/c had been turned off in the 95 degree heat, the water from the a/c leaked and totally buckled my fairly new hardwood engineered flooring.
The technician spent a total of forty (40) minutes at my home looking (and I mean simply looking as there was no taking the a/c unit apart to inspect) and he also took three (3) phone calls during the time he was checking my a/c unit. The conclusion the technician came to was my a/c unit needed an evaporator coil. The technician then stated that he did not have an evaporator coil and would need to reschedule an appointment for the following week. The outside air temperature was between 95 to 96 degrees making it now impossible to stay in the house. For the record, this technician did not check the outside part of the a/c unit and did not respond to answering questions asked of him regarding the a/c unit. At this point, I was so upset that I was not sure what to do. After the technician left, I decided to call Kenneth Buggay Mechanical to ask a few questions that needed answers. I called Kenneth Buggay Mechanical speaking to someone named ** and requested to speak with **, the a/c technician. I was informed that I could not speak with the a/c technician although this same a/c technician took three (3) separate outside calls while at my home inspecting my a/c unit. The man on the phone who stated his name was **, stated he would answer my questions. I asked him how could he answer my questions when he did not inspect the a/c unit? The AHS subcontractor from Kenneth Buggay Mechanical hung the phone up in my ear when I persisted that I wanted to speak with the a/c technician. It was now after 6:00 pm and another day was lost.
Within the hour, I received an email stating that another AHS subcontractor, Service Solutions was assigned to my case. While speaking with Service Solutions and AHS, I pulled up their record with the Better Business Bureau and learned that Service Solutions had three (3) complaints with the Better Business Bureau and I did not deem this acceptable. Additionally, this meant the process with the a/c unit needed to start over at my inconvenience.
Second Misrepresentation AHS subcontractor Kenneth Buggay Mechanical's technician not completing checking my a/c unit and stating my a/c unit only needed an evaporator coil.
On June 03, 2011, I hired a reputable air conditioning contractor that arrived at my home within than 2 hours of my initial call to them at 8:30 am. This a/c contractor spent over two (2) hours inspecting my a/c system and explained each procedure to me as well as encouraged questions. He proved to me that my a/c unit was beyond repair and needed to be replaced as there were several proven leaks in the outside part of the unit and parts were no longer available for the type of a/c unit I had. He also informed me that replacing the evaporator coil would only be a temporary fix and I would continue to have a/c problems. This company was One Hour Heating & Air, a subsidiary of Mr. Sparky, a well respected company in several states. The a/c unit was changed out at a cost of $ 5,975.00 along with the initial service call of $196.00 for a total of $6,171.00..
For the record, I contacted my broker with Coldwell Banker on June 01, 2011 when I realized that I had been duped by AHS. My Real Estate Broker attempted to contact by telephone and by email ***, the local Account Executive for AHS but she refused to contact me even when my Real Estate Broker asked her to do so in writing several times. In fact, *** lied to my Broker by stating she would contact me but never did. I emailed and left voice mails for *** on June 03 and June 04, 2011 but it was to no avail..
Third Misrepresentation An AHS employee, *** mislead my real estate broker as well as myself that she would contact me regarding the complaints I had with AHS employees.
On June 06, 2011, I contacted the manager of the Coldwell Banker office, ***. Ms.*** informed me that *** from AHS would be calling me to resolve my problem. Mr.*** did call me that day and identified himself as a vice president at AHS but he stated that he was driving to Birmingham and he would call me back before the end of the day. Mr.*** never called back as promised.
Fourth Misrepresentation to deceive me by stating that I could expect to be contacted by the end of the day.
As Mr. *** proved to be useless, I decided to call the insurance company who held the surety bond for AHS, Liberty Mutual. This information is found under Letter "L"- Miscellaneous in the AHS contract and states as follows:
"Georgia residents only: THIS IS NOT A CONTRACT OF INSURANCE, however, the performance of the Contract is guaranteed by a surety bond written by Liberty Mutual, a surety insurer that is authorized to transact surety insurance in the state of Georgia. If AHS fails to pay any valid claim within sixty (60) days after proof of loss has been filed, you are entitled under Georgia law to make such claim directly to Liberty Mutual at 1524 Hwy. 30, E Carroll, Ia. 51401 or you may contact (712) 794-1001."
I called (712) 794-1001 and was unable to speak with anyone and left a message. Within a few hours, my phone call was returned and the person on the phone identified herself as ***. I then proceed to describe what had happened and asked what could be done to resolve the matter. I stated that I had spoken with ***, a vice president with AHS and Ms.*** asked who Mr.*** was as she had never heard of anyone by that name with AHS. It was at this point, my suspicion began to heighten. Ms *** advised that I would need to speak to AHS and that Liberty Mutual could not assist me.
Fifth Misrepresentation Ms. *** blatantly lied to me when she stated that she did not know Mr. *** as both Ms.*** and Mr.*** are employees of AHS.
On June 07, 2011, I again contacted Ms.*** with Coldwell Banker. Ms.*** stated she would get with the Atlanta Regional President of Coldwell Banker, Ms. ***. I informed Ms.*** that I was unable to get anywhere with Mr. *** of AHS.
The following day on June 08, 2011 when I did not hear from Ms. *** I alled her office and spoke with her assistant *** advising that I suspected fraud was being perpetrated upon me by AHS. Ms.*** returned my call at 12:15 pm by leaving me a voice mail stating I was to call the president of AHS at 866 305 0259 X2101 or his cell at 901 340-5681. At 2:05 pm that same day, I placed a call to 866 305 0259 X2101.The phone was answered by Ms.*** This was the same person who answered the phone for Liberty Mutual. I did not identify myself and requested to speak with Mr.***, President of AHS. Ms.*** stated, he does not speak to customers. Ms. *** then asked if she could assist and I stated that she could not assist me as she was not the individual that I was instructed to contact. It was now clearly evident I was being defrauded by the employees of AHS.
Next at 2:08 pm, I called the cell phone number of 901 340-5681 also left on the same voice mail from Ms.*** of Coldwell Banker as a number at which I could reach the President of AHS. When the phone was answered I asked if this was Mr.*** of American Home Shield and was advised that I had the right number but not the correct person. I reiterated the phone number once again to be sure and again was told the number I dialed was not for the person I was calling. I did ask the individual that answered the cell phone if he was with American Home Shield and he replied he was not.
At 5:09 pm on June 08, 2011, I received a phone call from telephone number 901 340-5681 and the individual identifying himself as *** from AHS leaves a message. Kindly note, 901-340-5681 is the same phone number that I called earlier in the afternoon where I was informed this was not the correct person or company. I then advised Ms. *** of Coldwell Banker via email that I was not amused by her form of deception and relayed to her that I was surprised that someone in her position would stoop this low.
On June 08, when I checked my email in the evening, I had received an email from Mr. *** indicating that I was to contact "Ms.*** at *****@ahslink.com. Ms. *** works for the Presidents line and will be your contact person".
Sixth Misrepresentation was defrauding me be giving me bogus phone numbers for the CEO of American Home Shield.
On June 09, 2011, I directed an email to Mr. ***, the CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate in Parsippany. New Jersey. I was then contacted by Mr. ***,an Executive Assistant at Coldwell Banker in Parsippany, New Jersey who then referred me to Mr. ***,the Senior Vice President-General Counsel for Coldwell Banker in Weston, Florida. According to Mr.***'s email to me on June 10, 2011:
"My office is reviewing the matter and we will respond in some manner before the end of the day".
Needless to say, Mr.*** did not get back to me as promised and I contacted him and Mr.*** stated he would not get back to me before Monday, June 13, 2011 indicating he wanted to be fair to everyone.
When Mr.*** did get back to me on June 13, 2011, via email, he was less than fair in his assessment claiming that Coldwell Banker had no responsibility to me. I attempted to contact Mr.*** to ask why he distorted the entire scenario and he would not respond to me. I had to contact the Florida Bar in Tallahassee, Florida when Mr.*** refused to reply to my emails. It was only after the Florida Bar contacted Mr.***
that he responded to me in a very nasty tone on June 16, 2011.
On June 13, 2011, I received an email from Ms. *** stating the following:
"I would like to know if you had your own company out to repair the evap coil. I would like to review the invoice for possible reimbursement"..
American Home Shield
P. O. Box 748
Carroll, Iowa 51401
Phone 866-305-0259 ext.2101 (this is the same phone number I was given for Mr.*** the CEO of AHS).
Fax 901 597-0269 (901 us a phone exchange for Memphis, Tennessee)?
On June 16, 2011, I found this interesting link where I read hundreds of complaints that detailed fraud and misrepresentation on the consumer perpetrated by American Home Shield and their other named company Service Masters.