Warning: Storm damage could attract illegal contractors

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TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW) – Following Tuesday night’s tornado and hail damage in Greenwood and Butler counties, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is urging local residents to proceed with caution to avoid scams by fraudulent contractors.

“After storm damage, our instinct is to clean up and make repairs as quickly as possible,” Schmidt said. “Unfortunately, fraudulent contractors often rush into storm-damaged areas to take advantage of local residents in their time of need. It’s important to keep your guard up to avoid becoming victimized again by a scammer.”

In particular, Schmidt reminded residents that, with few exceptions, roofing contractors operating in Kansas are required to register with the attorney general’s office. The requirement to register with the attorney general’s office is in addition to any other local requirements that may be imposed by cities or counties. The online directory of registrations is available at www.InYourCornerKansas.org.

The attorney general’s office also recommends the following tips in dealing with any transient contractors, including roofers:

  • Get recommendations and references.
  • Get at least three written estimates from different contractors.
  • Check contractor complaint records with the Better Business Bureau.
  • Understand your payment options and right to cancel.
  • Be sure your contractor is insured.
  • Document all agreements in writing, including a written contract detailing the scope of work, the quality of materials that will be used, warranties, timetables, the names of any subcontractors, the total price of the job, and the schedule of payments.

Any Kansans who have problems with roofing contractors or other companies that follow storms may file a request for the attorney general’s Consumer Protection Division to investigate at 1-800-432-2310 or www.InYourCornerKansas.org. The attorney general requests that Kansans promptly report any unregistered person or company attempting to sell roofing services.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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