Consumers can start making claims after statewide Terminix settlement
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WTVY) - Attorney General Steve Marshall announced Monday that current and former Terminix customers in Alabama may now file claims for restitution.
In November, the Attorney General’s Office announced a historic $60 million settlement with Terminix International in response to the company’s alleged illegal business practices targeting Alabama consumers.
“As part of the State of Alabama’s consumer settlement with Terminix, a court-appointed receiver is now ready to receive claims from current and former Terminix customers in Alabama who suffered from the company’s unconscionable overcharging and failure to provide paid-for services,” said Attorney General Marshall. “These actions violated several provisions of the Alabama Deceptive Trade Practices Act, a state law designed to protect consumers from deceptive, fraudulent, unconscionable, and illegal acts committed by businesses operating in Alabama.
Under the settlement, the court-appointed Receiver will administer an uncapped $25 million consumer fund to pay claims against Terminix. Terminix may add to this fund as needed to address consumer claims. Claims may be filed from anywhere within the state of Alabama for repairs, inspections, treatment, termite damage or premiums charged by Terminix.
Customers to Get Refund Without Filing a Claim
All present Terminix customers who were overcharged for pest control services in 2019 and 2020 will be issued refunds for the overcharges without the customer having to file a claim. The Receiver expects to begin mailing the refund checks to customers by May of 2021.
Customers Who Need to File a Claim
All former Terminix customers who closed their contracts with the pest control company due to unfair pricing may file a claim to receive either:
- A one-time $650 payment, or
- A payment for the difference between the old Terminix contract and a new contract with a different pest control company, or
- Refunds of any excessive payments made in 2019 or 2020.
Baldwin and Mobile County Terminix Customers
Under the settlement, all current Terminix customers in Baldwin and Mobile counties will receive a retreatment and termite inspection at no additional cost. Many of these retreatments have already been performed.
All current Terminix customers in Baldwin and Mobile counties will have their termite protection service reinstated to their 2018 rate, if so desired.
Terminix Contests Statewide Claims
In a message to WTVY, a Terminix representative said the refund claims were only applicable to residents of Mobile County, Baldwin County, and parts of Monroe County.
However, the AG’s office denies this saying, “The Terminix settlement with the state of Alabama is for damages statewide. While the majority of the impact is in Baldwin and Mobile counties, any current or former Terminix customers within the state of Alabama who suffered under Terminix are welcome to file a claim.”
How to File a Claim
To file a claim, present and former Alabama Terminix customers should visit the Receiver’s website at www.terminixfund.com to access forms which can be completed online, or downloaded, printed and mailed to the Receiver for processing.
Jeffrey C. Schneider, the court-appointed receiver, can also be contacted at:
Levine, Kellogg, Lehman, Schneider + Grossman LLP
201 South Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, Florida 33131
(786) 347-2564 (Phone)
(305) 403-8789 (Fax)
Under the previously announced State settlement with Terminix, $20 million was also awarded to the Attorney General’s Office to settle the State of Alabama’s claims against Terminix and to be reinvested in statewide consumer protection efforts. An additional $4 million has been paid by Terminix to the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries. And, Terminix has made a $1 million charitable contribution to the Auburn University Department of Entomology.
Terminix agreed to adopt a reasonable and affordable price increase schedule to prevent it from charging consumers with unconscionable and exorbitant annual rate increases for its termite services.
The Terminix investigation was conducted by the Alabama Attorney General’s Consumer Interest Division, working in conjunction with the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries.
Statement from Terminix
We believe that the settlement reached with the Alabama Attorney General’s office is a fair resolution that is in the best interest of our customers, specifically those in Mobile and the surrounding counties. As stated in the agreement, the company does not admit to any fraud or wrongdoing in connection with our business practices.
Over the last year, we have made substantial improvements in our operations, claims management processes, governance structure, and quality assurance, including completing a $10 million supplemental treatment plan to address customer concerns during 2020, before this investigation began. The improvements have enhanced our ability to treat Formosan termites and serve our customers more effectively. This settlement and these enhancements continue our efforts to support our customer base in the area.
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