NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Legal Newsline) - Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper announced on Friday that three family members who ran two Nashville furniture stores have agreed not to engage in illegal business practices.
Amanda Lee Drew, Timothy Bryan Drew and Anita Renee Drew did business as WOW Furniture in Madison, Tenn., until it closed in 2009. Timothy Drew and Anita Drew also did Business as Drew's Furniture Depot, also known as Drew's Furniture, from 2001-2008. They allegedly took orders at both businesses for furniture but failed to deliver the items.
Consumers complained that they placed orders for furniture from store catalogs and made advance payments. The promised furniture or refunds, however, were not delivered.
Under terms of the agreement, the defendants are barred from similar illegal conduct in the future.
The defendants gave sworn financial statements that confirmed that they had no money or other assets with which to provide restitution to consumers. The agreement, however, requires the defendants to make minimal quarterly payments that will be used for consumer education by Consumer Affairs.
"We know this is disappointing for the consumers who received neither what was promised nor refunds," Cooper said. "The settlement requires defendants to annually update my office regarding their financial status, and we intend to ensure that they comply with the settlement terms and refrain from future illegal activity. Furthermore, if we determine defendants acquire the financial means to pay restitution in the future, we will take legal action to obtain it for consumers."
Additionally, the agreement requires civil penalties and attorneys fees, which will not be collected if the defendants abide by the terms of the injunction and make the consumer education payments.
All three of the defendants have filed for bankruptcy, but none of the debts associated with the furniture stores were discharged.