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Concrete decision rendered for Sunshine Coast handyman fined $10,000

14 October 2019

A Sunshine Coast handyman has been fined $10,000 by the Maroochydore Magistrates Court today (14 October 2019) for accepting deposits but failing to complete rendering, concreting and paving jobs for Queensland consumers.

Corey Mark Poole pleaded guilty to charges laid by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for accepting payments from three consumers but failing to supply their services within the specified periods of time.

Mr Poole was also ordered to pay $950.50 in compensation to one of the consumers who had not received a refund. A conviction was not recorded.

The court heard that between March and July 2018, Mr Poole responded to three online advertisements from consumers on the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, and near Bundaberg looking for a tradesman to perform contracting work including paving, rendering and concreting jobs.

Mr Poole requested deposits totalling $1,400 before agreeing to complete the work. No work was done for the Gold Coast or Bundaberg consumers, while some work was done for the Sunshine Coast consumer.

Mr Poole also received a further payment of $1,000 from the Sunshine Coast consumer for the cost of materials but after beginning the work Mr Poole requested more funds to continue.  When the consumer queried his expenses, Mr Poole abandoned the job and failed to deliver the remainder of the materials. This left the consumer liable for additional costs to have the work completed.

The court heard all three consumers contacted Mr Poole about the uncompleted work.  The Gold Coast and Bundaberg consumers were eventually refunded after lodging formal complaints with the OFT.

Fair Trading Acting Executive Director Craig Turner said the matter served as a reminder to traders not to quote for jobs and accept money if they are not able to undertake the work promptly.

“Consumers are entitled to refunds for services they have paid for that aren’t completed. Traders who breach the ACL can face significant enforcement action by the OFT.”

Queensland residents are encouraged to follow the OFT’s social media accounts where alerts are issued about traders found doing the wrong thing.

Consumers are also reminded to visit the Queensland Building and Construction Commission’s website to check a tradie is appropriately licensed to complete any projects.

For more information on consumer rights, or to lodge a consumer complaint, visit www.qld.gov.au/fairtrading.