Posted by Terry Alexander - email
PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - What would you do if you bought a high dollar product but, you can't get the warranty you paid for? A Petersburg businessman called 12 on Your Side for help.
It's not your typical warranty dispute. This warranty dispute is over money. An unpaid $7,500 bill. The manufacturer says, it didn't get paid and until somebody pays up, the customer will not get a warranty.
What's a $22,000 digital sign worth, if it doesn't come with a warranty? Greg Schultz says he's worried. He has no protection against unexpected bad things that could go wrong.
"In two years when that sign blows up, we'd like to have a warranty on it. Right now, there's no warranty," said Schultz.
Greg owns "Trading Company" in Petersburg. The changing message board is perfect to promote his business. But, when the digital messages stopped changing he called the manufacturer in Florida, a company called "High Tech".
He says he made a stunning discovery about "Heritage Signs." The Dinwiddie company he paid $22,000 to.
"Come to find out, I did a little more research with High Tech, they just haven't paid for the sign. That's the problem," said Schultz.
As a result, the Florida company is holding his warranty hostage and, pursuing the customer for an unpaid $7,500 balance.
"High Tech wants me to pay it and we've just decided that's not something we're going to do," Schultz said.
We called "Heritage Signs." It adamantly denies it owes money. Our special projects producer, also visited the business and was also told by the office manager, "No we don't owe them any money. They don't ship, until the bill is fully paid."
Minutes later, we called the manufacturer, again, and was told "Heritage Signs" does owe the money. High Tech produced documents and told us on the day the sign was to be shipped, a Mr. Dawson, with Heritage Signs, requested a 10 day extension to pay the final bill. High Tech says the money has never been sent.
"So, I've got a sign that's got a five year warranty and no warranty that I've paid really good money for," said Schultz. "We feel like we've been cheated."
Schultz says he also has to reinstall the software every 30 days, to keep the sign working. He plans to sue. 'Heritage Signs" says, if he drops the suit, then they'll fix the sign.