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Handyman & attorney speak out after being accused of giving woman runaround on project

Posted at 11:47 AM, Jan 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 11:47:53-05

(WXYZ) — A handyman and his lawyer are speaking out after a woman claimed he gave her the runaround on a project.

"I watch your channel all the time. I'm familiar with how you help people who are in real need, who have real problems, and unfortunately I feel that you were taken advantage of this time," Attorney Linda Bernard said.

Bernard said her client, Handyman Keith Garrett, went above and beyond to help someone to help someone he cared about and has known for 20 years.

In late October, Doris Neal of Detroit accused Garrett of failing to deliver on a walk-in Jacuzzi tub installation project, which she said she initially contracted for in June. A useful set-up as she battles multiple sclerosis.

However, Garrett said the original agreement only called for a shower with a seat for $3,000. They say the invoice speaks for itself.

"There was no problem. There was just a person who changed her mind about what she wanted and a contractor who helped her time and time again to try to help her resolve her concerns," Bernard said.

She added her client removed the old tub, installed a shower pan per the terms of the agreement, and had the plumbing modified for Neal because she couldn't afford a $15,000 Jacuzzi tub install.

"So she kept nagging and nagging about and finally, he agreed to install it for her for free," Bernard said.

Neal is standing by her story.

"Let's get this straight now. He knew what he was supposed to be doing when he got here. He knew he was supposed to be putting in a walk-in tub," Neal said.

Bernard said Neal changed the scope of the work, however she said there's no updated written agreement. She also said he client was asked to hold off on working in the home because another contractor was there.

But in August, Garrett said he loaned Neal the money for the tub. She paid him back $1,600.

Garrett said the tub that came from Menard's was defective because it was missing a drain. Instead of a cash refund, Garrett gave Neal a Menards voucher. That voucher was then used to help pay for a second tub in November that was too small.

"Because she was frustrated, I guess, by the whole situation, she decided to go to you and tarnish his name and his reputation and that of his family," Bernard said.

Neal is still without a tub, and she's also trying to get her in-store credit exchanged for cash so she can go somewhere else.

We've checked with Menards corporate on that, and just yesterday, they approved sending her a check.