Attorney General Gansler Issues Cease and Desist Order Against Medical Alert Service Provider
Company fails to respond to emergency requests by customers
MD ( Dec. 8, 2011) - Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler announced today that his Consumer Protection Division has issued a Cease and Desist Order against Glenn Chumley and his business, Medical Alert Buyers Alliance Corp. The Division alleges that Mr. Chumley, of Odenton, preyed on elderly consumers by selling them emergency alert devices and one-year service plans promising to connect them with an emergency alert center if they fell or had other medical emergencies, but then failed to respond when they needed help.
"Taking advantage of vulnerable Marylanders who depend on their medical alert devices is an appalling act that could lead to serious injury or even death and it must not be tolerated," said Attorney General Gansler. "Consumers rely on emergency alert providers for help when they need it most."
According to the charges, Chumley and his company entered into contracts with more than 1,000 customers promising to help them, but after going more than $100,000 in debt with a vendor, he stopped providing the emergency alert services for which consumers had already paid. As a result, when consumers had emergencies and pressed the buttons on their emergency alert devices, nobody responded.
In a petition that accompanied the charges, one consumer described his elderly mother pressing her emergency alert device when she fell and broke her shoulder, but nobody replied. Another consumer described waiting for hours to get help after she could not reach anyone using the emergency alert device purchased from Mr. Chumley.
The Consumer Protection Division also alleged that Mr. Chumley continued to bill consumers for emergency services he did not provide, made unauthorized charges on consumers' credit cards and failed to honor warranties and guaranties that he made to his customers.
The Division's order requires Mr. Chumley and his business to return any payments they received without customers' authorization or for services they did not provide. Any penalty Mr. Chumley and his business must pay will be determined by the Consumer Protection Division following a hearing scheduled for March 27th at the Office of Administrative Hearings, 11101 Gilroy Road, Hunt Valley, MD 21031. Mr. Chumley and his business have also been ordered to stop selling emergency alert services to consumers unless they post a $20,000 bond or other security with the Division and provide the services they sell.
Consumers with complaints against Medical Alert Buyers Alliance Corp., or Glenn Chumley may call the Consumer Protection Division at 410-576-6569 or write the Division at 200 St. Paul Place, 16th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202.