BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - The New York Attorney General is investigating the closing of FWS Home Furnishings based on hundreds of complaints from FWS customers.
They special-ordered furniture and paid in full, but now have nothing to show for it. As it turns out, about 50 of those special orders were filled by a company in Ontario, Canada that is a long time supplier of Park's Furniture in Niagara Falls.
Store manager Patrick Gabriel said, "When this happened with FWS, they called me and said, 'Can you find out who these people are, and can you contact them, let them know?'"
While Park's has only been in Niagara Falls for a few months, the furniture chain has a long history in Canada.
For FWS customers like Gary Pilato, hearing this news of potentially receiving their furniture was like waking up from a bad dream. Gary and his wife Ginger paid $5,000 upfront for a living room set they ordered from FWS.
"So in the middle of October, we called and they said they just shipped it. Then the next day it was on the news that they were closed, and it was like, devastating," Ginger said.
Ironically, three of the tables in the set had been ready for pick-up.
Gary said, "I could have picked it up all the way up until Tuesday before they closed, because it was right there in the building. It was paid for and everything."
But it turns out Gary's furniture wasn't made by the Canadian company, DecorRest, but Gabriel is using his contacts to help the Pilatos find their living room set.
And originally it seemed like those FWS customers whose furniture was made by DecorRest had a chance of getting their items.
Gabriel said, "DecorRest is willing to take a bit of a hit on it because chances of them finding somebody else who wants that specifically made the way the customer wanted it is remote."
But a representative of DecorRest told News 4 the special order furniture they were holding for FWS customers is no longer available - it is gone. The liquidator for the bank that took over FWS apparently wanted a piece of the action and DecorRest sold the furniture.
So for those 50 customers who could have gotten their special orders from the Canadian company - granted, for an additional cost - it is back to square one.
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