Judge gives Ajax, Ont. contractor who bailed on kitchen reno two years to pay back the homeowner
Anthony L. Blake was convicted of disappearing from a kitchen reno with the customer's deposit and other payments. But he has two years to reimburse the victim.
By Steve Payne
Editor’s Note: Here’s a press release from Consumer Protection Ontario, about a contractor who left a Pickering, Ont. homeowner with an unfinished kitchen reno. The owner of the convicted firm, ANTA Design Group, doesn’t exactly get hammered by the judge: probation, a $2,500 fine, and monthly payments for TWO years to the homeowner.
On March 23, 2015, Anthony L. Blake, operating as ANTA Design Group Inc. of Ajax, Ontario, was convicted of charges under the Consumer Protection Act, 2002. Blake was fined $2,500 and sentenced to two years’ probation. As a term of probation, he was ordered to pay $23,482 in restitution to the consumer in 24 equal monthly payments. ANTA Design Group Inc. was also convicted under the act and fined $1,500. In addition to the fines, the court imposed a 25 per-cent surcharge on Blake and ANTA Design Group Inc., as required by the Provincial Offences Act.
Between June 2012 and March 2013, a Pickering homeowner entered into an agreement with Blake and ANTA Design Group Inc. to renovate a kitchen. The consumer paid deposits for renovation work and for kitchen appliances to be bought at a discounted price. The work was started, but not completed. The appliances were not received. Over a period of five months, the homeowner did not have a functional kitchen and repeatedly contacted the contractor to complete the work. After more than five months, the consumer cancelled the agreement and requested a refund from Blake and ANTA Design Group Inc. The consumer did not receive a refund and hired another contractor to complete the renovation.
Justice of the Peace George Griffith of the Ontario Court of Justice in Whitby convicted Blake and ANTA Design Group Inc. on the following charges:
· engaging in an unfair practice by making false, misleading or deceptive representations to a consumer
· failing to provide a consumer with a contract containing information required by the Consumer Protection Act
· failing to refund payment within 15 days of being given notice of cancellation of the consumer agreement
Consumers are reminded to check the ministry’s Consumer Beware List before doing business with any company.
· Ontario’s Consumer Protection Act, 2002 provides for fines of up to $250,000 for corporations and $50,000 for individuals convicted of offences. It also provides for jail terms of up to two years less a day for each offence for individuals.
· The act empowers the court to order offenders to pay compensation or make restitution to victims.
· Visit Consumer Protection Ontario for tips and advice on how to be a smart consumer.