Dow sues blinds maker

Keith Loria Jan. 31, 2011, 3:32am

NEWARK, N.J. (Legal Newsline) - New Jersey Attorney General Paula Dow announced on Monday that she has filed a lawsuit against a custom draperies and blinds maker for allegedly violating the state's Consumer Fraud Act and other state regulations.

Mitchell Poller, conducting business under the names American Draperies and Blinds, American Draperies and Blind Company, Countrywide Draperies and Blinds, Country Wide Draperies and Blinds, Affordable Draperies and Blinds, Affordable Drapery and Blind Company, and The Drapery and Blind Company, allegedly also violated the state's Home Improvement Contractors' Registration Act and several furniture delivery regulations.

The six-count suit alleges that customers paid deposits to one of Poller's companies for items that they either did not receive or that were not delivered as ordered.

"Consumers paid thousands of dollars for merchandise that was not as ordered and, in some cases, never delivered," Dow said. "Home furnishings are high-cost items, and we're taking this action to hold the defendant accountable for defrauding consumers."

Dow alleges that Poller was also hired for cleaning services on draperies, blinds and other home furnishings, but many items were never returned to consumers and their deposits were not returned.

The state's complaint alleges that Poller engaged in unconscionable commercial practices and made misrepresentations and false promises. Poller allegedly did not use required consumer protection language in contracts, failed to adhere to furniture delivery requirements and did not register as a home improvement contractor.

Dow is seeking reimbursement for all customers, as well as civil penalties and all costs associated with the litigation. She also wants Poller and his businesses to be compliant with the applicable state laws and regulations.

Some consumers have filed civil lawsuits against Poller, which resulted in default judgments that remain unpaid, Dow said.

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