West Springfield, Mass. (WGGB) — Choosing a good contractor can be a challenge for anyone and getting your money back when something goes wrong can be even harder. ABC40 News sat down with one homeowner who is fighting to get her money back after a contractor left a project unfinished.
Reporter, Brendan Monahan recently talked with West Springfield resident, Linda Holloway about her claim that a roofer left her out to dry.
Linda told him she found a hole in the roof of her home four years ago, so she searched newspapers and the yellow pages to find a contractor who could quickly fix it. She landed on Sam Lynn of Lynn Roofing Co. in West Springfield.
“I did my research, what I thought was my research in advance. I didn’t find anything to lead me to believe that this guy was going to take advantage of me, he’s my neighbor!” says Linda.
She adds, “He took a ladder, he went up on the roof, he spent all of like three minutes. He said he patched the hole and it would be okay until he got started the following week.”
From there, Linda signed a contract and paid Lynn $6,000 for the job. He also agreed to fix her garage, but the next week he never came back. Instead, rain storms caused major damage after her kitchen ceiling caved in.
“I called repeatedly. Everyday sometimes up to 3, 4, 5 times a day, he never called me back. Then I would get a phone call saying sorry an emergency came up I’ll be there next week,” says Linda.
However, next week never came. So, Holloway paid a new contractor to do the job. She also filed a civil suit against Sam Lynn. When that didn’t go anywhere, she went to the police. West Springfield detectives filed a larceny complaint in August of 2009. The Better Business Bureau says Lynn has no license to be a contractor, but he has received a number of negative complaints on their website.
We went to the address he listed on his business card, but go no answer. Meanwhile, Linda continues to fight to get her money back more than 4 years after Sam Lynn promised a “quick fix” for her roof.
“I’ve come close a couple of times to dropping it. But then there’s something in me that says no I’m going. I’m going if it’s 10 years. I’m going to continue this. People need to know what he does,” says Linda.
This is only half the battle for her. Linda’s case has been continued 24 times over the past three years in Springfield District Court. She’s wasted days and days of vacation time attending court hearings and still Sam Lynn has not been forced to pay up.
Her next hearing is set for August 22. The DA says that his office is working to bring it to trial, but it’s really been the perfect storm of lawyers not showing up, the defendant Sam Lynn not showing up or being in jail on unrelated charges.
Brendan Monahan spoke with DA Mark Mastroianni and Judge William Boyle at length about how a case like this can go on for so long and what it does to the judicial system. You can read that story here.