AG Shapiro Stops Price Gouging by New York Wholesaler

September 3, 2020 | Topic: Consumers

HARRISBURG―A New York-based wholesaler that sold pandemic-necessary N95 masks for $12 each has agreed to pay $1,630 in civil penalties and $3,294 in restitution for Pennsylvania businesses that purchased the highly sought after protective face covering, Attorney General Josh Shapiro said today.

Complete Medical Supplies was found to have sold at least 95 multi-packs of N95 masks to Pennsylvania retailers for an average price of $12/mask. The Office of Attorney General previously reached price gouging settlements with retailers Paoli Pharmacy and Yorke Pharmacy, both of whom obtained N95 masks from Complete Medical Supplies.

“Since the start of this public health emergency, we have worked to stop price gouging by online sellers, brick-and-mortar shops, and the wholesalers and distributors that choose to take advantage of a bad situation,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “Selling N95 masks for $12 a piece is not something my office will allow, no matter the company’s location.”

Under Pennsylvania’s Price Gouging Act, a price increase of more than 20 percent during a declared state of emergency is considered price gouging.

Today’s Assurance of Voluntary Compliance, or AVC, requires Complete Medical to pay a total of $4,924 in civil penalties and restitution for those that purchased the N95 masks from the company. The AVC also requires Complete Medical to donate 390 N95 masks to hospitals in Pennsylvania. Complete Medical Supplies has agreed to fully comply with all provisions of the Pennsylvania Consumer Protection Law and Price Gouging Act moving forward.

Consumers who purchased N95 masks from any of the Pennsylvania businesses listed below may be eligible for restitution if they paid more than they should have:

  1. American Surgical Supply, Jim Thorpe,
  2. In Home Oxygen & Medical Supply, Wyomissing,
  3. Laurel Medical Supplies, Ebensburg,
  4. Luzerne Medical, Hazleton,
  5. Medical Shoppe- Stephens Pharmacy, Honesdale,
  6. Paoli Pharmacy, Paoli,
  7. Pulmonary Care, Havertown, and
  8. Yorke Pharmacy, Levittown.

To be considered for restitution, consumers should file a consumer complaint form and attach a copy of their receipt showing they purchased the N95 face masks between March 6, 2020, and Sept. 3, 2020. Complaints must be submitted by Nov. 2, 2020 to be considered.

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