• Report: #864490
Complaint Review:

Emergency Services Restoration

  • Submitted: Thu, April 05, 2012
  • Updated: Wed, April 16, 2014

  • Reported By: Roll — Sacramento California United States of America
Emergency Services Restoration
4429 W. 153rd St. Lawndale, CA 90260 Internet United States of America

Emergency Services Restoration Dan Hartwell Emergency Services Restoration Dan Hartwell Restoration, waetr Damage Scam Internet

*Consumer Comment: You couldn't be more correct

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This report has supplemental information to the 1st  report called What a Water Damage Company (ESR) Doesnt Want You to Know- which can still be found on the net despite ESRs attempts to take it down by suing the ex-employee of theirs who wrote it. To find the first report just Google What a Water Damage Company Doesnt want you to Know Emergency Services Restoration Inc..

ESR runs out of Lawndale, Ca with another satellite office in Hayward, Ca.

ESRs job is to market the company. All of the marketing girls, trucks, flyers, all events thrown, etc carry the name ESR. All the companies who refer them, refer them as ESR and know them as ESR only. Even though ESR is being referred by licensed contractors to do work that REQUIRES a license, ESR is NOT licensed. Why does it require a license? Because anyone who knows restoration knows that 95% of the work one comes across is over $500 and that in 90% of the jobs you are required to remove drywall or baseboard or padding or carpet or flooring or cabinets and so on, which DOES require a license. Eye witness reports corroborate that ESR lays concrete, removes drywall and does illegal unlicensed work.

ESR is therefore an unlicensed contractor doing the work of a licensed contractor, ESR itself carries NO contractors license and claims that they refer any construction related work to the other company IRR.

So then we get to IRR. This company is licensed. IRR is out of Lawndale Ca. (located in the same office as ESR) and has no offices in Northern California.

There are no trucks that say IRR, no marketing material and quite possibly no direct employees. You can find Dan Hartwell (first name Kasson) and his wife Sendy Suzanne Hartwell under that license in the CSLB website. 

IRR is run as a separate company so that the owners can skip back and forth from saying that they are and that they are NOT licensed as they please and deceive their employees, clients, vendors. And the State.

Possibly the most important fact is that IF ESR carried the license ESR could actually do restoration work legitimately, BUT! (and this is the big one) they would have to advertise with Mr. Hartwells license as it is the LAW. This would mean two
things: #1 since ESR gets so many complaints and gets sued all the time Mr. Hartwell could lose his license, if not because of the internal lawsuits because of the bad workmanship and cheap labor they hire. #2 because as of today ESR claims they sub contract all their techs (yet ALL the techs wear ESR uniforms and drive ESR trucks and use ESR equipment) ESR is lying. It is just a way to hide from liability for the bad workmanship. ESR says they use sub contractors the interesting thing is that ESR is not a contractor and the techs they employ are not contractors either, they say they are independent employees, yet they are made to report to the company and are hired and fired like any employee and by wearing ESR uniforms and driving ESR trucks they are presenting themselves as employees of the company, something the CSLB, EDD and the IRS would have a problem with. This IS basic business 101 and ESR is using
this as a sly way to profiteer and evade taxation. 

At this moment in time it is suspected that up to 50% of their sub contracted techs are currently not insured nor carry workmans compensation insurance.  This means that if the work is done incorrectly the client CAN NOT sue ESR directly (as ESR sub contracts) and when the client sues the individual tech, the technician has no insurance to cover anything. What the technician will do is close the existing business entity and open another business entity or file for bankruptcy and continues about his day, while the client is left with nothing. Since the technicians do NOT have state licenses they could care less about it.

Moreover, if ESR carried the license as it should, either all their employees would ACTUALLY have to be employees and ESR would have to pay taxes and have proper insurance for them and pay workmans comp insurance and assume RESPONSIBILITY, things that would cut into the profiteering. 


If ESR does decide to get properly licensed and keep their techs as sub contractors all of these sub contractors would have to get themselves duly licensed, insured and if they employ anyone, have themselves workmans comp, etc (things that actual normal subcontractors have to do). Since NONE of ESRs techs are actually licensed by the CSLB then ESR would have to get all NEW techs who actually know how to do proper work. The problem would be that these new guys would actually cost ESR some money and again would cut into the profiteering.

Now, for RTT this is their website (http://www.rtt-training.com/).

RTT owns all of the equipment, trucks and uniforms. RTT also does the training for ESR and by training I mean low grade certification that means close to nothing here in California when a restoration company NEEDS to be LICENSED. All of their sub contracted techs rent the equipment and trucks and uniforms from RTT. RTT claims to train other companies too, but they mainly certify a few Plumbers who refer them, and refer them illegally may I add.

RTT rents these trucks, equipment, supplies to ESR technicians at a cost of $800/month or more. ESR subcontracted technicians also have to pay fees for the dispatchers and marketing people. RTT is supposedly owned by Dan Hartwells
brother in-law, also done to prevent taxation and liability regarding the connection between ESR, IRR and RTT.

ESR Contracts, this company is known for pressuring their referral sources such as plumbers to sign these 5 or even 10 year contracts.  If the referral source decides to refer anyone else they are threaten with lawsuits!!!

ESR is NOT a contractor and they CAN NOT do Restoration work in California. If the company was to decide to sue a plumber per say, just bring the issue up with the CSLB and see what happens. 

ESR Contracts or Agreements (or whatever they try to call them nowadays) are NOT legally binding in California and if you have one with them you should throw it away.

ESR lawsuits, this company has a long history of suing competitors, clients, plumbing accounts and ex-employees. And even a bigger history of bullying anyone who Mr. Dan Harwell sees as opposition. For these reason ESR has lost nearly all of its ground in Houston, Texas and San Diego,CA and CLOSED its operations in Arizona to better suited companies who treat their employees with respect. As a result ESR has hired private investigators to follow ex-employees and is currently suing one of them.  The latest lawsuit was brought about because one of ESRs ex marketing girls in her early 30s decided to get a Job with Serv-Pro of Napa. She was threatened and followed around by a PI and when she stood her ground Mr. Hartwell decided to sue her. Would YOU want to work with this company?

Recently ESR has come under a lot of pressure in Northern California, where several of their accounts decided to no longer refer them due to their Unlicensed status. Meanwhile in their main area (Los Angeles) ESR has suffered from loosing their two largest accounts due to their Unlicensed status and poor workmanship.

Mr. Hartwell had to even open a new company to funnel money through, Restoration Leasing & Supplies. This was brought about after intense scrutiny by the State for their illegal set-up. 

Even though a complicated set up (like a tangled web of lies and deceit), Mr. Hartwell manages to make millions because of his funneling of money from one company to the other and skipping back and forth evading laws when possible.  His companies are owned by different family members and relatives (for tax and liability purposes) and any ex-employee you find of theirs will tell you that they are all a litigious bunch and will sue anyone for any reason. For these reasons everyone should know who they are dealing with.

The CSLB, EDD and the IRS would be very interested in this information.


September, 2009

Updated- April 2012

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/05/2012 03:34 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/emergency-services-restoration/internet/emergency-services-restoration-dan-hartwell-emergency-services-restoration-dan-hartwell-re-864490. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

You couldn't be more correct

AUTHOR: Rkirk - ()

Everything the original poster said is 100% fact. We were also victims of ESR and finally had to obtain an attorney because of everything they screwed up. One time they even caught me telling my neighbor not to use them because their plumber called them to remediate after a leak and they actually came to my house and parked out front then followed me when I was on my way to pick my kids up from school, all the while screaming at me from his car about never talking to any of his clients again. 

I do want to add a few things to your post that my attorney has told us:

1.) you CAN sue them. Even if the job went perfect, you can sue them. Subcontractors, 1099's, whatever it doesn't matter how they hire their employees or techs. Because ESR duly acted in the capacity of a contractor by hiring or sending the techs they are therefore guilty of being an unlicensed contractor.

2.) DO NOT PAY THEM A DIME! Because they are unlicensed they have NO RIGHT to contract with you or any plumber for that matter. Unlicensed contractors are NOT entitled to any money from you. Sign anything you want, then when it's time to pay tell them to sue you. When they do sue you let the court know they are not licensed. They will have to PAY YOU!

3.) California State law requires that ALL CONTRACTS signed in the home for any type of construction contain a 3 day right to rescind. For any remediation that was due to a disaster (leaks, floods, etc), they must give you 7 days. If they decide to start the work before the 3-7 day period is over and you cancel, that is their loss, NOT YOURS. THIS IS CALIFORNIA LAW!

4.) they are only certified by the EPA for lead paint removal. THAT IS IT! This certification STILL doesn't make them licensed contractors.

5.) pay attention to the cert numbers for RTT. When something says cert # 001, there is a problem.

6.) if in the future ESR gets a license that still is not enough!! California State law requires that the licensed individual must be present to supervise during the entire job. I hardly doubt the owner will do that or pay the wages of numerous licensed individuals!


please feel free to contact me with any info or questions. I have found an AMAZING attorney who is familiar with ESR if anyone would like a referral. THIS COMPANY NEEDS TO BE STOPPED!!!!

rochellekirk at ymail dot com

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