STRATUS BUILDING SOLUTIONS Sued by Franchisees for RICO Violations
December 22, 2012
STRATUS BUILDING SOLUTIONS Sued by Franchisees for RICO Violations.
(UnhappyFranchisee.com) St. Louis-based attorney Jonathan Fortman continued his relentless fight for the unit franchisees victimized by Stratus Building Solutions today by filing suit against the janitorial franchisor for violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).
Readers of UnhappyFranchisee.com are familiar with Fortman’s ongoing campaign against Stratus Building Solutions, a company that allegedly preys upon hardworking Hispanics and other ethnic minorities who are seeking to own a piece of the American Dream. Both directly and through a tier of “Master Franchisees,” Stratus allegedly collects thousands of dollars from individuals, promising them predetermined “guaranteed” commercial cleaning jobs. Franchisees allege they either never receive the promised work, they receive work that is underbid to the point that it is unprofitable, or, in some cases, are assigned work that is then taken from them due to phony or exaggerated “complaints” supposedly originating from customers.
These are all common unethical practices in the janitorial franchise industry, in which the principals of Stratus and many of the Masters have years of experience.
Here is the press release from The Law Office of Jonathan E. Fortman:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STRATUS BUILDING SOLUTIONS SUED BY UNIT FRANCHISEES FOR RICO VIOLATIONS
The Law Office of Jonathan E. Fortman announced today that it has filed suit against Stratus Franchising, LLC, the franchisor of Stratus Building Solutions, and each of its Master Franchisees.
The suit seeks certification of a class consisting of every Unit Franchisee and seeks damages under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). “Stratus Building Solutions is a franchise system built on fraud,” according to Jonathan E. Fortman, lead attorney for plaintiffs. “We have uncovered numerous instances of blatant fraud as set forth in our federal complaint. The franchisor defrauded the Master Franchisors who, in turn, perpetuated the fraud at the expense of those who invested their life savings into a system destined to fail,” Fortman stated.
“What I find particularly troublesome is the manner in which Stratus manipulated its ranking in the annual Franchise 500© list of Entrepreneur magazine. To many of our clients, that list legitimized this franchise system. However, we now know that the information used to rank this franchise was not based in any fact and was, in fact, fraudulent,” Fortman continued.
“The Master Franchisees had a chance to put a stop to the fraud and protect the franchisees. Instead, the masters chose to look out for their own best interests even after being made aware of this fraud. They have blatantly ignored the devastation experienced by their Unit Franchisees. They made their bed, now they have to lie in it. We look forward to presenting the overwhelming evidence in federal court and are confident that our clients will prevail,” Fortman concluded.
The Law Office of Jonathan E. Fortman, LLC, was established in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1995. It concentrates its practice in the representation of individuals harmed by fraudulent franchise systems. Jonathan E. Fortman is the lead attorney in the case of Handing v. Contours Express, LLC in which he obtained verdicts in excess of $1.3 million for 8 franchisees of the second-largest women’s only fitness chain and has over 60 additional claims pending.
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If you would like more information about this topic, please call Jonathan Fortman at (314)522-2312 or email Jon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Tags: Stratus Building Solutions, Stratus Building Solutions franchise, Stratus Building Solutions RICO, Stratus Building Solutions lawsuits, Jon Fortman, Jonathan Fortman, Dennis Frese, Dennis Jarrett, janitorial franchise, commercial cleaning franchise, franchise fraud, franchise scams