Michigan AG: Gas Co. to Revamp Door-To-Door Tactics

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Toronto-based natural-gas provider Energy America will revamp the way it markets its services door-to-door following consumer complaints, Michigan Attorney General Jennifer Granholm's office announced yesterday.

Granholm's office said it had received more than 130 complaints from consumers about the company's marketing practices this year. The complaints included accusations that independent contractors employed by the company to sell its services door-to-door failed to properly disclose the company for which they worked and forged consumer signatures on service orders.

Energy America has announced that it will suspend its door-to-door campaign and develop quality controls and training programs for sales agents. The company has indicated it is willing to cooperate with authorities in order to come into compliance with Michigan law, according to Granholm's office.

The state attorney general's office has received 675 complaints from consumers about Energy America since Michigan introduced competition in the natural case market in 1998. In 1999, Energy America introduced a sales confirmation system that stopped complaints for nearly two years, but complaints spiked again this year.

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