OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. - Action 9 investigated a roofing contractor who customers claim collected their insurance checks, but never installed new roofs. It's a company Todd Ulrich first exposed for telling customers that they had hail damage that didn't exist.
“Why don't you have a new roof?” asked Ulrich.
“Good question, because they disappeared,” Felix Bermudez said about ELR Restoration.
He said he hired ELR Restoration to replace his roof after the company found hail damage.
Bermudez said he gave ELR control of his insurance claim, and ELR cashed his $5,400 insurance check, but that he never got a new roof.
“And I try to call and call and call and leave voicemails,” said Bermudez. That was 10 months ago. “I think they pocketed the money. I hate to say it.”
Action 9 checked complaints with the attorney general's office and the BBB; three other customers claimed that ELR cashed insurance checks, but didn't replace their roofs.
Ulrich went to the company's main office is in Kissimmee to get answers.
“Homeowners claim this company took their insurance money, but can't get new roofs,” said Ulrich as a manager closed the door.
Action 9 wanted to talk to ELR owner Eric Rosario, who pleaded no contest to workers comp fraud in 2014. Instead, a new manager said he's been working to honor all existing contracts.
ELR Restoration could face bigger problems. They were just sued by a major insurance company that accused ELR of running a scheme to defraud.
Security First Insurance claims taht the contractor submitted claims for exaggerated or non-existent damages.
The lawsuit mentions Action 9 investigation from 2016, where an ELR inspector said he found hail damage in an inspection, then he sat and smoked on the roof. Our expert inspected the roof and said there wasn't any damage.
ELR's new manager said recent problems have been corrected and that Bermudez will get a new roof.
“That's why I called you,” said Bermudez.
An ELR Restoration spokesperson said the company could not control some delays and apologized for any mistakes it made. Also, they could not comment on the lawsuit.
ELR issued the following statement:
"ELR Restoration has serviced the Orlando and Metro surrounding areas for over 13 years. The company has provided restoration services for thousands of homeowners. When it comes to roof installation, any delays that may result in an inconvenience such as rain, or other extreme weather conditions are not necessarily in ELR Restoration's control. Additionally, in the recent past, the company has experienced a significant workload, which resulted in further repair setbacks. In reference to the claim at hand, unfortunately, many factors contributed to the homeowner's roof installation delay."
"ELR Restoration has taken responsibility for the part that the company played in this situation. As a result, the client has been accommodated and the project is on schedule to be completed. We apologize for any inconvenience, and ELR Restoration is addressing its process internally to ensure that in the future, this situation doesn't occur again."
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