A few years ago, as I was preparing to leave for work, a vehicle pulled into our driveway and a gentleman got out of the truck and said that he noticed our driveway was in need of repair and, since they had extra blacktop in their truck, they would let me have it at a good price and would pave the driveway after I left for work.

I was suspicious and politely said no. He didn't seem to like that answer, he kept telling me that our driveway needed repaired, that they were right there and could do it that morning. I again said no. He appeared to get a little annoyed and, as he was climbing back in the truck, he yelled out the window that I was making a big mistake. It upset me so much, I had to call my husband. I felt bullied. While there wasn't a name on the truck, and the gentleman never gave me his name, apparently I'm not the only one who has had an experience like this.

Two Ulster County contractors, Douglas Cooper of Kingston, and Nicholas Cooper of Highland, operating as N. Cooper Paving, were handed judgments today from the New York Attorney General and the NYS Supreme court for repeatedly and persistently ripping off customers. According to the New York Attorney General, they would drive through neighborhoods saying they had extra blacktop in their trucks, or see snow on the roof and offer to remove it.

They claimed they would do it for a good price but never gave a written quote. Once the work began, they would ask the customer for payment higher than originally agreed upon. In addition, they would often harass and even intimidate the customers into letting them do the work, which turned out to be incomplete and shoddy, according to the New York Attorney General.

The Coopers are prohibited from engaging in the home improvement business in New York, per judgement from the NYS Supreme Court, until they file a $100,000 performance bond with the Attorney General’s Office, pay $23,900 in restitution to injured consumers, as well as $7,000 in cost and penalties to the State.

If you, or someone you know, believe that you were ripped off by Douglas and Nicholas Cooper, you have until April 11, 2016 to file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office. You can help protect your home and yourself with these helpful tips in choosing a home contractor from the Attorney General.