For press inquiries or to schedule an interview with the Attorney General please contact:
503-378-6002 or Kristina.Edmunson@doj.state.or.us
About Ellen F. Rosenblum
Attorney General Hardy Myers today announced that a Portland marketing company is out of business in the state until it complies with a July 2006 civil Investigative Demand (CID). Named in an injunction granted Monday by Marion County Circuit Court Judge Joseph C. Guimond is the First American Marketing Corporation (FAMC) of Portland, doing business as Community Car Service.
"Not only did this company ignore an official CID from the Oregon Department of Justice but it also ignored a court order to appear and explain itself," Myers said. "Additionally, in the name of cooperation, we granted them two extensions only to be chastised for supposedly 'wasting valuable company resources' with the request. In light of this obstinance, we can only conclude that they have something to hide."
Myers' Financial Fraud/Consumer Protection Section received 17 complaints against the company alleging misleading promotion of a coupon book published and marketed by FAMC in conjunction with several Oregon repair shops. For $79.95, consumers purchased a "Community Car Service Car Care Program" voucher that was good for "free" services such as eight oil changes and various other services including a transmission performance analysis and brake adjustment and inspection.
In the complaints, consumers alleged that the salespersons misled them about the hours the service shops were open and the nature of the services. The company also failed to comply with both state and federal laws requiring them to give consumers written notice of the right to a three-day rescission period for goods purchased at their homes for more than $25.00.
In addition, some consumers thought they were dealing directly with car repair shops only to discover that Community Car Service was not affiliated with the shops.
Due to the number and similarity of complaints, the Oregon Department of Justice opened an investigation and issued a CID in order to investigate alleged violations of the Unlawful Trade Practices Act. Refusal to comply with the CID led to the order to appear before the court to explain the non-compliance. The injunction against the company will remain in effect until the defendant complies with the CID.
Consumers wanting more information on this case or consumer protection in general may call the Attorney General's consumer hotline at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or toll-free at 1-877-877-9392. The Department of Justice is online at www.doj.state.or.us.
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