ORLANDO, Fla. (Legal Newsline) – A timeshare company and operator alleges a Lake Worth, Florida law firm is diverting funds from timeshare interest owners through false promises.
Westgate Resorts LTD, Westgate Vacation Villas LLC, et al. filed a complaint on March 9 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Orlando Division against U.S. Consumer Attorneys PA, Henry N. Portner and Robert A. Sussman alleging false advertising under the Lanham Act and other counts.
According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that the defendants represent themselves as a law firm working "to relieve timeshare owners of their obligations, including owners of Westgate timeshare interests."
"Defendants, however, are not assisting consumers in situations where a timeshare company - such as Westgate - has done something fraudulent or otherwise illegal. Instead, through false and deceptive online marketing and advertising activities, defendants specifically target Westgate owners in order to cause them to pay money to defendants in lieu of paying their legitimate and legally enforceable contractual obligations," the suit states.
The plaintiffs hold U.S. Consumer Attorneys PA, Portner and Sussman responsible because the defendants allegedly "unnecessarily subject their clients to the risk of adverse actions by Westgate - such as foreclosure and other available legal remedies - and cause Westgate economic and reputational injury," the suit states.
The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seek judgment against defendants, injunctive relief, compensatory and special damages, lost profits, interest, attorneys' fees, costs, and further relief as the court deems just. They are represented by Richard W. Epstein, Michael E. Marder and Jeffrey Backman of Greenspoon Marder LLP in Orlando, Florida.
U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Orlando Division case number 6:18-cv-00359