ORLANDO, Fla. — Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody is now taking legal action against a solar company that Action 9 has been investigating for the past two years.
Her office filed a complaint with the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in Orange County against Vision Solar that includes claims the company engaged in deceptive sales tactics and improperly installed solar panels.
Earlier this year, the Action 9 team stopped by the Orlando office for Vision Solar. Consumer Investigator Jeff Deal informed workers there, “We had a consumer complain about her solar panels.” The worker who seemed to be in charge replied, “If it’s anything legal, you guys will have to step outside.” He then escorted them crew out of the business. Jeff Deal was looking to get answers for Vision Solar customer Virginia Dugan.
Dugan showed Action 9 a pile of panels next to her Daytona Beach home and said, “That’s a real waste of my good money. I’m still paying on those. Pretty frustrating.”
Dugan had been waiting for panels on the home to be hooked up and start working after what she called two years of empty promises from Vision Solar.
In March, Connecticut Attorney General William Tong’s office sued Vision Solar for unfair and deceptive sales tactics. As part of a statement Tong said, “We’re investigating numerous complaints regarding high-pressure solar industry sales tactics, but Vision Solar’s predatory practices are far and away the worst we have seen.”
Now, the Florida Attorney General’s Office has filed a similar lawsuit seeking to stop the company from engaging in misleading practices and to get money back for consumers. The court filing shows Ashley Moody’s office has received at least 180 complaints against Vision Solar. Those complaints allege Vision employees made promises of energy benefits and credits that haven’t come to the customers and promises of fast completion times. But like Virginia Dugan, other customers claim they’ve faced many delays.
This is not the first time Ashley Moody’s office has gone after solar companies. In November, she announced action against MC Solar. Action 9 has also reported on consumer complaints from that business. MC Solar has hundreds of complaints, with consumers claiming they paid thousands of dollars for panels that were never hooked up. After Action 9 reached out, one of MC Solar’s owners said he has helped hundreds of consumers get their panels turned on.
As for Vision Solar, after Action 9 inquired about Virginia Dugan’s case, the company offered to correct the problem at its expense and eventually let her out of the contract. It also informed Action 9 that it has started a task force to expedite projects that are at a standstill.
Action 9 also reached out to Vision Solar for a response to the latest legal action by the Attorney General’s Office in Florida, so far, it has not responded.
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