Toronto Area Contractor Ordered to Pay Back More Than $6,000 to Consumers
On March 21, 2014, contractor Tony Stewart, operating in the Toronto area as Renoclub and Two Oceans Custom Cabinetry Inc., pled guilty to charges under Ontario's Consumer Protection Act. He was ordered to pay back more than $6,000 to consumers and also serve one-year probation.
In 2009, two consumers entered into agreements with Stewart and Renoclub for the installation of new kitchen cabinets and fixtures. They agreed on a price and the consumers gave Renoclub deposits of $6,872 and $5,220 respectively.
After waiting almost a year for the kitchen materials, the first consumer requested a refund, which was never provided. The second consumer also waited for almost a year and received nothing from Renoclub. When he followed up, he was told that Renoclub had ceased operations but a second company, Two Oceans Custom Cabinetry Inc., was taking over Renoclub's orders. The consumer signed a new contract with Two Oceans but the contract did not comply with the requirements of the Consumer Protection Act. After discussing delivery with Two Oceans for more than a year, the company and Stewart stopped responding to the consumer's inquiries.
Justice of the Peace Radkey of the Newmarket Provincial Offences Court convicted Stewart on charges of:
- failing to take reasonable care to ensure Renoclub provided a refund required by the Consumer Protection Act
- failing to provide a consumer with a proper contract containing the information required by the Consumer Protection Act.
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.
- The act also empowers the court to order offenders to pay compensation or make restitution to victims.