BISMARCK, ND – A Minnesota man who took advantage of an elderly North Dakota homeowner is banned from doing business in the state. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem issued a Cease & Desist Order against Joe Beaulieu, DBA Dakotah Roofing & Remodeling, LLC. Beaulieu lists addresses in Blaine, Waubun and Bloomington, Minnesota.
The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection division initiated an investigation after receiving a complaint in January this year from an elderly homeowner who made advance payments of over $91,000 to Beaulieu in 2013 for repairs to her home. Beaulieu had promised to finish the repairs within two months, but more than two years later over $50,000 worth of repairs still had not been completed. Beaulieu had also persuaded the elderly consumer to advance him additional funds, allegedly to pay his employees. The check he used to repay the consumer was returned for insufficient funds.
“This contractor took advantage of an elderly homeowner, bilking her out of tens of thousands of dollars. He did just enough work on the home to make it appear as if there was progress, when really he was just out to collect as much money as possible before he left the state,” said Stenehjem.
After repeated attempts, investigators were able to speak briefly with Beaulieu, who promised to refund $30,000 to the consumer. However, Beaulieu has not provided any refund and has since stopped communicating with investigators. Although Beaulieu was licensed when he entered into the 2013 contract with the consumer, he has not been licensed since March 2014. The investigators discovered that Beaulieu also solicited other consumers for months after his license expired, receiving advance payments from those consumers but failing to complete the work.
“Before paying any money to a contractor, make sure the contractor is properly licensed and obtain a detailed, written estimate of the work and the time required to complete the job,” said Parrell Grossman, director of the consumer protection division. Grossman reminded consumers that they can quickly check the Secretary of State’s website to see if an individual has a contractor’s license, at http://sos.nd.gov or by calling that office at (701) 328-2900.