Texas man arrested for residential contractor fraud in the Tioga area
RAPIDES PARISH, La. (RPSO) - A Canton, Texas man was arrested after reports of residential contractor fraud and exploitation of the infirmed that happened in the Tioga area.
According to the Residential Contractor Fraud statute, fraud occurs when the contractor “fails to perform any work during a forty-five-day period of time or longer after receiving payment, unless a longer period is specified.”
On April 15, Fredrick Lawrence Fontenot, 45, was arrested ant booked into the Van Zandt County Detention Center. He was later transported back to the Rapides Parish Detention Center where he was booked for residential contractor fraud < $1,000 and exploitation of the infirmed. He was later released after posting a $3,000 bond.
Sheriff Mark Wood would like to remind the public of these helpful tips that could avoid contractor fraud:
- Be cautious of contractors making unsolicited repair offers—many fraudulent proposals are made by contractors who offer services door-to-door and rush the victim to make a decision.
- Use only licensed and insured contractors – check references.
- Get a detailed written contract before allowing any work to be done. Be sure it includes the total cost, the specific work to be completed, time/payment schedules and any other important details.
- Don’t put too much money down, don’t pay with cash and NEVER sign over your claim check to a contractor. Don’t make the final payment until the job is finished.
- Never sign a contract with blanks or incomplete sections—terms or conditions you didn’t agree to could be added later.
- Always feel free to contact your insurance company if you have any questions or concerns about your contractor.
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