For immediate release - Tuesday, August 30, 2005
Contact Bill Brauch - 515-281-8772 or
Eric Tabor - 515-281-5191.
Suit alleges Clive company uses deceptive tactics to gain access to consumer households and fails to provide refunds under
the Iowa Door-to-Door Sales Act.
DES MOINES. Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller filed a consumer fraud lawsuit today against Carlson Technologies,
Inc. and its owner and president, Roger T. Carlson. Carlson Technologies, Inc. uses door-to-door sales to sell home care
products, including Tri-Star brand vacuum cleaners listed for up to $2,000 a unit.
The lawsuit described numerous complaints from Iowa consumers alleging that agents of Carlson and Carlson
Technologies, Inc. had, among other things, used deceptive means to gain access to consumers' homes for sales
presentations, failed to provide refunds after consumers cancelled sales under Iowa's Door-to-Door Sales Act, and failed to
provide a "prize", as promised, within 30 days as required by the Iowa Prize Promotions Act.
"We allege that agents of Carlson Technologies, Inc. and Roger T. Carlson used a combination of misleading and unfair
business tactics to sell their products," Miller said. "For example, we allege that defendants misled consumers by calling
and telling a consumer that the consumer had won a voucher for a free hotel stay that the defendants would deliver to the
consumer's home. We allege this claim was just a ruse to get defendants' sales staff into the consumer's home for a sales
presentation in that every consumer called is told they are the winners of the voucher. We also allege that the defendants
failed to disclose limitations on obtaining the voucher, and that they sometimes failed to provide the voucher to
Carlson Technologies, Inc. and Carlson had resolved earlier disputes with the Attorney General's Office by signing an
agreement called an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance which was to prevent future violations. However, the lawsuit
alleges that the defendants breached that agreement by failing to respond to consumer complaints in a timely manner,
failing to make required disclosures upon first contact with consumers, and by failing to follow Iowa's Door-to-Door Sales
"Our suit asks the court to halt the unfair and deceptive practices, assess civil penalties, and provide appropriate
reimbursement for consumers," Miller said.
The suit was filed Tuesday in Polk County District Court in Des Moines.
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