The state attorney general's office said it has sued a Framingham contractor after he allegedly engaged in home improvement projects without proper registration, failed to complete the work, and misappropriated tens of thousands of dollars from a consumer.
The lawsuit filed against Kyle Buckminster last week in Suffolk Superior Court seeks civil penalties and consumer restitution for violations of the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act, according to a statement from Attorney General Martha Coakley's office.
The suit alleges he misrepresented himself as a licensed home improvement contractor and abandoned projects for which he had received payment.
As a result of a preliminary injunction, obtained by Coakley's office on Thursday, Buckminster is prohibited from soliciting or engaging in any contracting services without proper registration or a license from the state. The court-ordered injunction also prohibits Buckminster from transferring or disposing of any assets while the state’s lawsuit is pending.
“Performing home contracting work without a license puts honest contractors at an unfair competitive disadvantage,” Coakley said in a statement. “This lawsuit will help ensure that these deceptive contracting practices do not continue.”
According to the complaint, Buckminster – who conducted business under the names of Buckminster Construction, Kyle Buckminster Fine Custom Carpentry and Finishing, Mid-Cape Construction and Fine Custom Carpentry, Blue Ocean Builders, and First Commonwealth Builders – had his home improvement contractor’s license revoked in 2000 and has never held a construction supervisor license. He allegedly has solicited work both as a home improvement and general contractor in Massachusetts.
The attorney general's lawsuit follows findings in August by the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation that Buckminster had been operating as a home improvement contractor without a license in four matters filed by South Grafton residents in 2011, claiming that Buckminster failed to fulfill his obligations under their home improvement contracts.
Coakley's office alleges that even after Buckminster had been ordered to pay thousands of dollars of penalties and cease engaging in any residential contracting services without appropriate licensure, Buckminster continued to solicit work in Massachusetts by holding himself out as a licensed contractor, and misappropriated more than $40,000 from a fifth individual for a construction project in West Yarmouth.
The complaint further alleges that Buckminster failed to pay any of the penalties assessed.
For more information, visit the attorney general's website.
Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org