Maryland’s official litigators and the operator of a former auto-parts business in St. Mary’s have resolved a dispute over customers’ unfulfilled orders.
The Maryland Attorney General’s Office announced last Thursday that its Consumer Protection Division has settled the complaint against Maryland Speed LLC, an online retailer owned by Branden Farthing.
“The settlement agreement is the best opportunity to make sure, between my own efforts and [a] restitution fund, that all issues are resolved,” Farthing said Monday.
The state agency pursued administrative sanctions in September, according to a release, that the business accepted payments for parts that it failed to provide to customers and refused to issue refunds. Of at least 671 consumers who placed orders with Maryland Speed but never received their purchased parts, many of those consumers were able to get refunds by contesting the charges on their credit cards, the agency reports from a consent order, while at least 235 of those consumers are owed refunds totaling at least $220,877.
“The settlement requires Maryland Speed to stop selling parts it cannot provide, and to provide the Consumer Protection Division with a $100,000 surety bond if it continues doing business in Maryland,” according to the release, adding that “the company and Farthing must also return all of the monies they owe to consumers and pay penalties and costs to the division in the amount of $100,000, which may be reduced if full refunds are made to consumers.”
Consumers who are owed refunds from Maryland Speed may call the Consumer Protection hotline at 410-528-8662 or 888-743-0023.