North Carolina Department of Justice
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Attorney General Josh Stein Gets Interim Relief Against Hurricane Michael Price Gouger

Release date: 1/31/2019

(RALEIGH) Attorney General Josh Stein this week won interim relief against a tree removal company he filed a price gouging lawsuit against earlier this month. Judge Keith O. Gregory granted a preliminary injunction against National Emergency Restoration Services LLC and extended the temporary restraining order against its Director of Operations Ricardo (“Rick”) Aleman. The order prohibits the company from doing or charging for tree removal or related work in North Carolina until the trial. The injunction also prohibits the company from collecting on tree-related work in North Carolina until the case is resolved.
 
“Ripping off North Carolinians picking up the pieces after Hurricane Michael is immoral and illegal,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “I’m grateful the court has blocked this operator from taking advantage of others as we continue this case to hold them accountable.”
 
Attorney General Stein’s complaint against National Emergency Restoration Services and Aleman alleges that National Emergency Restoration Services came to a consumer’s home in Browns Summit, North Carolina, and falsely represented to the owner that the company was sent by his insurance company to remove three trees. As a result, the homeowner did not ask what the price would be. Later, National Emergency Restoration Services sent the customer an invoice for $37,200 to remove the trees and place a tarp on part of the home – though another tree service quoted in writing just $800 for the tree work.
 
This is the sixth lawsuit Attorney General Stein has filed related to price gouging after Hurricanes Florence and Michael.
 
A copy of the preliminary injunction can be found here.
 
A copy of the temporary restraining order can be found here.

Contact:
Laura Brewer (919) 716-6484
 

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