2 Louisville businesses file for bankruptcy with unfilled orders

Scams or just bad business? Recently we’ve brought you stories about customers getting hung out to dry by some local businesses.
Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 11:08 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Are these scams or just bad business?

Recently we’ve brought you stories about customers getting hung out to dry by some local businesses.

Davenport Extreme Pools and Spas and the Bridal Suite of Louisville have drawn complaints from many customers saying the businesses failed to deliver on what they paid for.

These situations have left a lot of people crying “scam.”

Both businesses said they still want to complete orders, so we talked to the Better Business Bureau about when it’s a scam and when a business has just run its course.

“Honestly I just want my money back,” Heather Pohlman, a Davenport customer said.

“A lot of money that needs to be figured out,” Savannah Rietveld, a customer of the Bridal Suite said.

Pohlman and Rietveld both paid for things they haven’t received.

Pohlman paid for a pool from Davenport pools, but all she got was a hole in her backyard.

“My backyard is nothing but mud, I’ve got some rock out there,” Pohlman said.

Rietveld paid for a wedding a dress from the Bridal Suite of Louisville, but the store closed before she could get it.

“It’s quite a sum of money that’s not being accounted for at the moment,” Rietveld said.

“What we see particularly with scams is someone coming out, taking money advance and just take off,” Reanna Smith-Hamblin with the Better Business Bureau said.

It might sound like these companies fit the bill, but you have to take a closer look.

“Bad business is just sometimes the business doesn’t even mean to do it and sometimes they do,” Smith-Hamblin said. “We’ve seen it over the years. Many years. Where a business might rob Peter to pay Paul because they’re having issues, they’re trying to get ahead but they never can get ahead.”

Davenport’s bankruptcy filing said they used customer deposits to fund the business but they ran out.

Davenport’s lawyer said bankruptcy was a last resort to stay in business, and the only way they can finish their pool installations is if the bankruptcy is successful.

There’s cases like Pohlman’s where some work has been done, but other people have said they paid and got nothing.

Smith-Hamblin said taking money and not doing any work could be fraud.

“If you give them cash or give them a check, and they go out and they cash that check right away and they never come back, then they are absolutely committing fraud,” Smith-Hamblin said.

On the other hand, there’s the Bridal Suite of Louisville.

According to their lawyer, the owners are medically disabled and have done everything they can to save their business, and are still trying to deliver the dresses.

“We really have seen it so many times where they have their best interest for you and themselves, and things just snowball and take that kind of shape,” Smith-Hamblin said.

However, their lawyer said there’s no guarantee that the remaining 10 brides without dresses will ever get them or a refund.

“And that’s where the consumers file complaints and they never see the work get done, and they end up going out of business and you never see them again,” Smith-Hamblin said.

Smith-Hamblin said Davenport has an “F” rating on the Better Business Bureau website, while The Bridal Suite has an “A+” rating.

She said to avoid hiring a bad business, do things like look it up on the Better Business Bureau website, or Google the business, the owner or anything else you can think of.

And if you have a complaint, submit it to bbb.org.