All 94-year-old Norma Bartlett-Leach wanted was a refund for her hearing aids.
“No, they fell out twice. Luckily I found one and I tried it once more and again one fell out and I thought, I’m not going to fool with this,” said Bartlett-Leach.
Bartlett-Leach paid close to $4900 for the hearing aids in April to Audiologist Shashi Daniels.
She sent a certified letter to cancel the purchase within the three days provided in the contract. But no refund came–even when she hired a lawyer to get her money back.
“She absolutely stole my money and she will not give it back. I have also incurred legal fees and I wish to have those back also,” explained Bartlett-Leach.
What Bartlett-Leach didn’t know was that Dr. Daniels had been accused by the state for doing nearly the same thing to Jean Rozen two years earlier.
According to Rozen, she and her daughter Shelley got nothing but excuses when they asked for a full refund. Shelley also discovered the law on hearing devices requires refunds be sent within 10 days.
“I thought about how wrong it was for this person to be holding that much of my mother’s money when she already had the merchandise back,” said Shelly.
When Rozen didn’t get a full refund she filed a complaint with the Department of Health. In February, Dr. Daniels agreed to a DOH ruling that placed her on compliance monitoring for two years. Just a couple of months later, she sold Mrs. Bartlett-Leach her hearing aids.
DOH won’t talk about Dr. Daniels because she is currently under investigation for two complaints. We stopped by her Gig Harbor office and she wasn’t in and later she declined an on camera interview.
“You don’t do business this way. And you certainly do business this way when your business in and of itself is serving a vulnerable population,” said Shelly.
Unfortunately, Rozen passed away two weeks ago and I spoke to her family, they were fine with us running the story.
As for Norma – after chasing a refund for more than six months, Dr. Daniels’s dropped off a check the same day I called her.