Customer Fraud AND Defiance of Court Orders? Federal Judge Tells Terminix: “Pay Up!”

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US District Court Judge Jeffrey U. Beaverstock ordered Terminix to explain why it should not have to pay two victims of its fraudulent termite prevention service by a certain deadline. Instead, the company said it would wait three months and then give its explanation.

Federal Judge to Terminix: Pay $3 Million for Fraud and Defiance of Court Order.

Judge Beaverstock’s July 6, 2020, order patiently and studiously explains why Terminix was required to comply with the Court’s order. Terminix offered no good excuse for delaying the case. Explaining a principle that most litigants already understand, the Judge described why the world’s largest termite company had to comply with the Court’s deadline and did not have the power or right to make-up its own schedule.

The Judge also ordered Terminix to pay 6% interest to its victims for the time Terminix delayed the case.

According to one of the lawyers who represented the victims in this case, Tom Campbell of Campbell Law PC (offices in Mobile and Birmingham), “We are happy that the Court told Terminix that it could not monkey around with the courts and try to delay paying its victims just because it wants to delay paying. If Terminix does this again, I hope the courts will fine Terminix with sanctions for the delay. We have sent the Sheriff to collect assets and now have an order from a federal judge telling Terminix to abide by the same rules we all have to follow. Maybe they will get the message that when they are ordered to pay victims this means they need to write a check.”

This order is the latest in a long string of losses by Terminix.

Because of the losses, Terminix is treating homes of remaining Mobile-area customers in the hope that they will stop termite damage before its victims discover the hidden damage that is already occurring inside walls, ceilings and floors. If these customers later discover the damage, Terminix will try to use a limitation in its contract that says customers have to find living termites in the property for Terminix to be liable. 

However, knowledgeable lawyers say the decades of fraud will probably prevent Terminix from enforcing that limitation. Attorney Tom Campbell says, “Since the treatments are part of the overall fraudulent scheme, judges and arbitrators who have a lick of sense will rule that the contract is voidable. ‘Ongoing fraud’ is still fraud and fraud invalidates contracts. We learned that the first semester of law school.”

One court or arbitrator after another has found Terminix guilty of faulty termite prevention service that is causing widespread damage to homes and businesses along the Gulf Coast and throughout the Southeastern United States. Terminix has faked providing the termite prevention service it sold, allowed prevention barriers to secretly wear-off, ran customers off with grotesquely high increases in renewal premiums, or conned customers into changing to less favorable termite contracts.

At a trial in Mobile in June, Terminix’s national claims director confessed that the company was using several scams to cheat customers in its claims process.

Campbell Law PC maintains offices in Mobile and Birmingham and routinely represents homeowners and businesses that termite damage because their termite companies failed to provide the termite prevention and inspection services correctly. They work to help nationwide and can be reached at 877-586-7582 or [email protected]

Need more reading? A link to Judge Beaverstock’s memorandum opinion is here: