Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Conway & Better Business Bureau Caution Consumers about Water Line Service Coverage Solicitation

Press Release Date:  Friday, January 29, 2010  
Contact Information:  Shelley Catharine Johnson
Deputy Communications Director
502-696-5659 (office)
 


Attorney General Jack Conway and the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of Central & Eastern Kentucky today cautioned consumers to be wary of a mail solicitation from Home Service USA that has generated numerous complaints from consumers and public utility officials in Central Kentucky. Consumers in Frankfort, Versailles, Richmond, Danville and Nicholasville have reported receiving solicitations from West Palm Beach, Florida-based Home Service USA that look like a notice from their local water utility. The notice is actually a solicitation from a private business offering what appears to be a warranty service.

The mailer suggests that the recipient is required to pay an additional fee for the maintenance and repair of their water line. It instructs the consumer to return a form with their credit card information or to return a check, which will automatically charge the consumer's account for future payments.

"By filling out these forms, consumers will be incurring charges that are not required by their local utilities," said General Conway. "During these trying economic times, I want to ensure Kentucky families are not tricked into spending money for services that may not be necessary."

Consumers' responsibility for water line repair and replacement will vary depending on the water provider. As a result, General Conway suggests that customers contact their local water company if they have questions about the merits of any warranty service. The mailer, which is available for viewing at http://bit.ly/d4ppwV, contains other statements that General Conway and the Better Business Bureau believe may be misleading— including that the company is accredited by the bureau.. According to the BBB in West Palm Beach, Florida, Home Service USA is not currently accredited with them and the bureau is reviewing the mailing.

"We have received many inquiries regarding this Florida company's mailing in our service area," said Neil Kingery, President & CEO of the BBB of Central & Eastern Kentucky. "The Better Business Bureau of West Palm Beach, Florida covers the area where Home Service USA is located. Consumers who need assistance in resolving a dispute with Home Service can do so with that bureau at www.seflorida.bbb.org"

Consumers who have concerns about a solicitation or possible scam can contact the Attorney General's s Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-888-342-9257 or file a complaint online at www.ag.ky.gov. Consumers can also contact the BBB of Central & Eastern Kentucky at 1-800-866-6668 or www.bluegrass.bbb.org.