More Bad News for California Dispensing Business

CHICO, CALIFORNIA — Less than one month following the revelation that McDonald Hearing Aid Centers of northern California was placed under investigation by the state’s Department of Consumer Affairs, a report surfaced Monday that the state is expanding the fraud accusations against the business owner to now include separate charges against three employees.

dptcsmrAccording the Sacramento Business Journal,  the California Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology and Hearing Aid Dispensers Board{{1}}[[1]]State of California Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology and Hearing Aid Dispensers Board[[1]] is seeking to suspend or revoke the licenses of three dispensers that work out of the Center’s Lodi, Roseville, Fair Oaks and Sacramento locations, for “fraudulent and unlicensed activity targeting the elderly”.

 

“These individuals took advantage of elderly people, running a bait and switch technique to mislead them into spending thousands of dollars unnecessarily. We are seeking to discipline their licenses because we are committed to protecting California’s consumers and safeguarding them from unscrupulous people.” —Board Executive Officer, Paul Sanchez

 

According to a news release by the state Board, the Center is alleged to have advertised a $745 hearing aid product to lure consumers into stores where they were then “pressured and misled” into purchasing products costing several thousand dollars. Additionally, owner Mark Moore is accused of not informing consumers that former television news anchor Stan Atkinson is a paid spokesperson for the company.

“I am aware of the allegations in the Hearing Aid Dispensers Board Accusation,” said owner Mark Moore, according to Lodi News. “I believe I will be exonerated on these allegations because in all respects I have done my personal best to comply fully with State regulations. I will vigorously defend myself against baseless statements made to the media, and the allegations.”

 

Investigation Continues

 

 

McDonald Hearing Aid Center, according to its website, is a third generation family owned and operated business that has been in existence for more than 70 years. It is the second-largest retailer of hearing aids in the Sacramento Valley and grossed $45 million in hearing aid sales between January 2007 and November 2013, according to information released by the state.

A November 19th report on local NBC affiliate KNVN regarding the allegations can be viewed here. We remind readers that it is important to note that the Center has not been found guilty of any charges and the California Department of Consumer Affairs is still continuing to investigate the accusations.