Mass. AG Coakley suing Atlantic Restoration Company

BOSTON (Legal Newsline) - Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley announced a lawsuit on Tuesday against a Hanover contractor who allegedly violated a prior court order by soliciting and entering into illegal home improvement contracts with elderly consumers.

Richard Myers, operating under the name of Atlantic Restoration Company, allegedly violated a final judgment and permanent injunction entered in February 2011 prohibiting him from engaging in or soliciting any work in the home improvement industry.

"We allege that this contractor continues to steal thousands of dollars from consumers for renovations he failed to complete, putting the safety and well-being of residents at risk," Coakley said.

The lawsuit alleges that from at least December through January, Myers violated the terms of the permanent injunction by soliciting and entering into a home improvement contract with two elderly consumers. Myers allegedly charged $3,000 for mold remediation and the replacement of flooring in the consumers' home, failed to complete the job and refused to provide the consumers with materials he bought on their behalf.

Coakley's office is seeking consumer restitution and civil penalties of $10,000 per violation, in addition to disclosure by Myers of the identities of any additional victims in this matter.

In November 2006, Coakley's office filed a separate lawsuit against Myers alleging that he violated the Home Improvement Contractor Act by failing to perform agreed upon work, failing to apply for required building permits, requesting excessive cash advances, refusing to refund homeowners' payments for work not performed and illegally engaging in home improvement work using a suspended license.

In February 2011, a final judgment in that case entered against Myers required him to pay more than $291,000 in consumer restitution, $300,000 in civil penalties and more than $125,000 in fees, none of which Myers has paid. The judgment also permanently enjoined Myers from soliciting or engaging in home improvement contracting work in Massachusetts.

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