January 23, 2008
Jefferson City, Mo. — Attorney General Jay Nixon wants mid-Missouri consumers who may have paid for, but never received, furniture from a Columbia store that has closed that they have a place to go to air their complaints. Amid reports that the Ashley Furniture store located at 5710 Bull Run Drive in Columbia has suddenly closed, Nixon is urging customers who are still awaiting furniture after paying for it to contact his consumer protection hotline at (800)392-8222, or go online at ago.mo.gov to file complaints.
“There have been indications that this store has been having problems, and now we are hearing that consumers who paid for furniture aren’t getting answers,” Nixon said. “I want consumers to contact our office with complaints, while we work with both Ashley Furniture’s corporate headquarters and the local Columbia store to ensure that everyone who paid for furniture either receives it or a refund.”
Nixon says Ashley’s corporate headquarters has indicated it has already begun shipping furniture to the Columbia store for distribution to consumers who have already paid.
This is the second time in the past year Nixon’s office has moved to protect consumers in the wake of an Ashley Furniture franchise closing. In May, the Attorney General obtained a temporary restraining order against the local Joplin franchise after it closed suddenly, leading to complaints being filed by more than 200 consumers who paid for furniture but did not receive it. Due to Nixon’s aggressive action, Ashley Furniture sent trucks carrying nearly $600,000 worth of furniture from its corporate headquarters in Wisconsin to the Joplin area for delivery to consumers.
“In the Joplin instance, the quick response of consumers in contacting my office was instrumental in our ability to take decisive action,” Nixon said. “I appreciate that those consumers knew that the Attorney General’s Office was the right resource to contact with a consumer problem, and I urge those consumers in mid-Missouri in this situation to do the same.”