A pool company and its sole director have been found guilty of engaging in conduct that breached Victorian consumer and building laws.
The Bendigo Magistrates' Court imposed a $10,000 fine on LKS Lifestyle Solutions Pty Ltd ACN 167 806 055 (trading as Advanced Pool and Spas) and its sole director, Lauren Kate Smith, was fined a further $5,000.
LKS Lifestyle Solutions and Ms Smith pleaded guilty to:
- accepting payment without supplying products within the agreed timeframe
- failing to give clients a signed copy of a major domestic building contract within five days of entering into a contract
- entering into a major domestic building contract when the company did not have a director who was a registered builder
- entering into a major domestic building contract that did not include:
- plans and specifications for work to be carried out
- a registered building practitioner number
- the required insurance details.
In November 2014, LKS Lifestyle Solutions entered into a major domestic building contract worth approximately $65,000.
The clients paid more than $16,000, $2,055.70 as a deposit and the remainder as an installment payment. Ms Smith later told the clients the contract was invalid due to an issue with her company's building licence, and that a new one was needed. The clients signed the new contract but did not receive a copy, and the works were never completed.
Under the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995, builders must be registered and provide a major domestic building contract if they take on works costing more than $5,000.
The clients paid another builder to complete the works and commenced proceedings at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT), seeking compensation from Ms Smith and her company. VCAT has ordered that the clients be refunded in full.
To find a registered builder, visit the Victorian Building Authority website.