Oakville Company Fined $250,000
On October 15, 2012, Max Air Environmental Systems Inc. of Oakville was found guilty of 21 charges under the Consumer Protection Act, including engaging in unfair practices, failing to provide adequate contracts and failing to refund. The company was fined $250,000 - the maximum allowed under the Act.
The company's director, Michael Preston of Ancaster, was:
- Sentenced to 160 days in jail, followed by a 24 month term of probation, and
- Ordered to pay $110,369.51 in restitution to his victims.
It had been alleged that between March and November 2008, Mr. Preston and his company misled consumers in Markham, Stouffville, Toronto and Mississauga by providing contracts and accepting payments for services and products he knew his failing company would be unable to provide. Heating and cooling systems that were supplied malfunctioned shortly after installation and consumers were not given refunds when contracts were cancelled.
Consumers are reminded to check the Ministry of Consumer Services' Consumer Beware List at www.ontario.ca/consumerbeware before doing business with a company in Ontario. The list allows consumers to check the record of a company based on consumer complaints received, any actions taken, charges laid and/or convictions obtained by the ministry.
- Ontario’s Consumer Protection Act 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. The act also empowers the court to order offenders to pay compensation or make restitution to victims.