Resolved American Laser Centersterrible business practise

I met with American Laser Centers Clinic Manager Sara Patton on August 19, 2006, where we discussed the process and signed the paperwork, and I had my first laser hair removal treatment at the Cherry Creek, Colorado, location on August 25, 2006. The brochure Ms. Patton gave me states that it will take six treatments for the procedure to work, and ALC has a two year guarantee, which begins to toll after the hair is gone. I found out later that she lied about this; the 2 years begin to toll after the 6th treatment, regardless of whether or not the procedure was successful.

There was no difference in the area I had treated after 10 treatments in almost 2 years. According to the brochure I was given on August 19, "treatments must be repeated six times;" I have had almost twice that number of treatments with no improvement. My main concern was that my 2 year guarantee would pass without the procedure working and I would be out of luck.

I expressed my concerns at each appointment, but I was told over and over that I would see a difference soon. There was still no improvement, even with a higher laser setting and more frequent visits.

I contacted the corporate office last December in an attempt to speak with someone about the issue. I called multiple times, leaving messages for Kevin Piecuch and Robert Seffinger, but never received a call back. The following is a record of my phone calls and the duration of each:

12/18/2007 11:17AM [protected] 3

12/19/2007 10:12AM [protected] 2

12/19/2007 10:14AM [protected] 1

12/19/2007 2:00PM [protected] 1

12/19/2007 2:01PM [protected] 1

12/19/2007 2:02PM [protected] 3

12/20/2007 9:32AM [protected] 2

12/20/2007 3:06PM [protected] 2

12/20/2007 3:08PM [protected] 3

12/21/2007 2:37PM [protected] 1

12/21/2007 2:38PM [protected] 1

12/26/2007 12:54PM [protected]/26/2007 12:55PM [protected] 2

12/28/2007 2:32PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:33PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:34PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:34PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:35PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:36PM [protected] 2

12/28/2007 2:47PM [protected] 1

12/28/2007 2:49PM [protected] 2

12/31/2007 1:45PM [protected]

01/15/2008 8:39AM [protected] 2

02/16/2008 3:21PM [protected] 3

04/04/2008 8:55AM [protected] 2

04/04/2008 8:57AM [protected] 1

04/04/2008 8:58AM [protected] 1

04/04/2008 12:36PM [protected] 2

I finally spoke with a Customer Service Manager, Eva, on December 31, 2007 (the only call more than 3 minutes long - the other calls were me leaving messages for corporate management). She advised me to have the Cherry Creek ALC take a picture of the treated area, and the corporate office would make the determination of whether I should continue treatments. She told me that if they decided that I would not benefit from any future treatments, I could begin the process of getting my money back. According to Eva, I would get a response from the corporate office within two weeks of submitting the pictures.

After not hearing anything for over two weeks after the picture was taken, I tried to contact the ALC corporate office, but was again unsuccessful. As a last resort, I filed a claim with the Better Business Bureau on April 4, 2008. After repeated attempts by the BBB to obtain a response and the threat of losing their status as an accredited business, ALC finally responded with the following:

I have recently received your correspondence directed to American Laser Centers. We at American Laser Centers take immense pride in our services and products offered to the general public. Therefore, whenever a consumer is not satisfied with his or her treatments, we not only take it very seriously, but do everything in our power to rectify the situation. Ms. Goldberg concerns are of no exception to our guiding principal of complete customer service.

After reviewing a non-responder report our technicians do not believe that further treatments will change the outcome of Ms. Goldbergs results. Therefore, out of the spirit of good customer service, we have begun the process of issuing Ms. Goldberg a refund for the amount of $1563.73. This refund is equivalent to the purchase price of Ms. Goldberg�s package less 10% administrative fees as agreed in her contract.

Given the explanation above, it is our firm belief that this matter should no longer be in dispute. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.

I responded with the following:

I read the response sent by Ashley Willis on May 12. I appreciate that the BBB was finally able to get a response from them. Ms. Willis said that "out of the spirit of good customer service" they are refunding me $1563.73. However, I still expect the entire amount I paid without any deduction for administrative fees, as well as interest of the standard 8% that I am entitled to by law. She states that I agreed to the 10% deduction in the contract I signed with American Laser Centers. While this is true, they also agreed in that contract that the services they were providing would be completed in six treatments. As you are aware, they took quite some time to respond, which as far as I am concerned does not reflect their "spirit of good customer service." It is unconscionable for them to expect me to adhere to their contract when they would not do so. I also highly recommend that the BBB investigate American Laser Centers for false advertising and unfair and deceptive business practices.

After again not getting a response, I contacted the legal department representative who sent the letter directly. She had not received my rebuttal or additional information, so I e-mailed that directly to her, along with the following message:

Ms. Willis:

The following is what I sent to the Better Business Bureau after receiving your letter. Like I said, I do expect reimbursement of my full purchase price plus 8% interest. Please also send me the contact information for the registered agent of American Laser Centers who would receive a court issued service of process. Thank you.

After a week with no response, I wrote again and finally got an answer: I apologize for the delay in their response. I forwarded Robert Seffinger and Jacqueline DeLuca your message upon receipt. I also spoke to them regarding this issue. They are both currently in a meeting but I will urge Jacqueline to call you when she returns.

Have a nice day!

Ashley M. Willis

Corporate Legal Department

American Laser Centers

ALC is offering to reimburse me $1563.73, the purchase price minus 10% for administrative fees. They claim that I agreed to the 10% deduction in the contract; nowhere in the contract does it state this. Furthermore, rather than a check, ALC gave me a credit for the amount. It is an absurd assumption that I will use the credit towards future services.

Based on the circumstances, I am not satisfied with this. It has taken over five months for ALC to take any responsibility. I believe I am entitled to $1878.88, the full $1739.70 purchase price plus the standard 8% interest I am entitled to by law. Note the amount of time it took ALC to respond (I filed the complaint 4/4/08 and they did not respond until 5/12/08). I have attempted to contact ALC in addition to the 28 phone calls listed on the BBB report to get an explanation, but no one will speak with me. I will be serving them with legal papers in the next couple of weeks.

This company is incredibly unprofessional and something must be done about their false advertising - their brochure guarantees "complete satisfaction" and states that treatments must be repeated six times. This is not true and a violation of Colorado Revised Statute § [protected])(r), Deceptive Trade Practices. They deserve to be sued and shut down.



  • Cm
    CMB Jun 03, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    In May 2008 I went to American Laser Centers in Santa Rosa, California.

    I was told about this company because my friend gave me his $300 coupon he won at a fair.

    Long story short. I too signed the contract. The next day I was feeling I was being charged too much for only 6 appointments = + $5, 000

    I talked with a friend who said you should not be paying in advanced.
    His example was: If you go to the dentist, get a haircut, dr. appt = you pay as you go-- NOT in advanced.

    I called to cancel my laser appointment. No work or services were ever done to me.

    I was then told I had to pay the 10% administration fee.
    (I was furious! = + $500)

    I told the laser people under the California law according to the “State of California Department of Consumer Affairs, The Consumer Transaction with Statutory Contract Cancellation Rights there is a three-day no fault cancellation.”

    American Laser Centers would NOT honor this Law!

    I then consulted my friend who is a business person.



    (REMEMBER: ALWAYS BE professional and business like in your letters.)

    1.) Called my CareCredit number 1-866-893-7864 CLOSED the account over the phone. WRITE DOWN YOUR CONFIRMATION NUMBER!

    2.) Called GE the actual bank for CareCredit.
    TOLD them I had no work done.

    I sent a certified letter to dispute my account. Included in the letter is my: name, account number, day I signed contract, copy of the contract, include your confirmation number from closing your CareCredit account!
    GE Money Bank
    P.O. Box 981438
    EL Paso, TX 79998-1438

    3.) Contact BBB. I contacted the BBB in my area SF, CA. I was forwarded to the office in Michigan where headquarters of these American Laser people are Located.
    Contacted BBB of Detroit & Eastern Michigan
    3055 Southfield Road, Ste. 200
    Southfield, MI 48076-7751
    I sent a certified letter. In the HARDCOPY letter to the above BBB Address with a copy of your laser contract and a letter explaining what happened to you.
    AND: GO ONLINE TO: fill out the online form AND Write the hardcopy letter.

    4.) Sent a certified Letter to:
    Care Credit, INC:
    P.O. Box 1710
    Costa Mesa, CA 92628-1710

    TOLD them I did not have any work done.
    Tell them: “Please close my account. I want to Dispute the amount. I want a refund please.” (BE NICE and business like.)
    INCLUDE your: Name, account number, name and location of Laser store, your contact numbers, copy of the contract. Anything else you can tell them.

    5.) I wrote a letter to my Attorney General. (If you live in a different state than CA—do a Google search for the Name of your state you live in and “Attorney General”

    AND: YOU can send online COMPLAINT form—

    PLUS then mail in a hard copy letter including YOUR copy of the laser contract.

    For CALIFORNIA Send letters to:
    California Department of Justice
    Office of the Attorney General Edmund G. Brown, JR.
    Public Inquiry Unit Office of the Attorney General.
    P.O. Box 944255
    Sacramento, CA 94244-2550

    6.) I sent a certified letter to State of California Department of Consumer Affairs.
    State of California (YOUR State should have a Dept. of Consumer Affairs. Google search it to find it!)
    Department of Consumer Affairs
    Consumer Information Center
    1625 North Market Blvd., Suite N-112
    Sacramento, CA 95834

    Tell them about your unethical business contract with the American Laser Centers!

    7.) I sent a certified letter to the location of where I went to American Laser Centers. I told them to: Cancel my contract and services.

    8.) I emailed the office manager of American Laser Centers of the location that I went to. Look at your paperwork for the business card and the email address. Tell the office manager you want to cancel your treatments and services.

    9.) I emailed Customer Services at American Laser Centers:
    EMAIL: [email protected]
    PHONE: 877-252-2010

    10.)I went to Small Claims in my area for extra help. Do a Google search with the name of the county of the state that you live in and “small claims” for the location. BRING ALL YOUR PAPERWORK including your contract!

    MOST IMPORTANT: Keep copies of all your letters, your certified mail receipts, correspondents, emails…!

    BE Business like!

    Good luck! Think positive!
    Please write your letters!

    P.S. At first I did not want to write the letters. I was feeling like I was causing too many problems. That was until I was told I had to pay $500 + for no services or treatment.

    Do your BEST!

    0 Votes
  • Na
    Natalie Jun 03, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I have read your expirience and I would like to share mine. I finally met someone that is not HAIR FREE after such expensive treatments, please take the time to read my message below>>>

    *******I am sooo happy to have found this website!!!***********

    Please READ!!!

    This is soooooo crazy!!! Like many here, I too purchased a full face package in year 2004. Paid $3, 500+

    My story is a little different ...ALC has not only affected me financially, but also my personal life. My self esteem has gone done tremendously---TO THE FLOOR!!!

    I only had peach fur, could hardly see hair on my face but "won" a "hair romoval package" at a local event.

    Because it is required to shave before treatments, the hair on my face are thicker, and I am sooo upset and DEPRESSED!!! I have to hide my face with my hair and I can't even see my self in the mirror. I feel so embarassed!! I can't believe my hubby knows that I have to shave my face.Not only that but my face breaksout when I get the laser.

    I should have never EVER gone to ALC!!! I regret it with a passion.

    Four years and they always say the same thing... ITS A MYTH... YOUR HAIR CAN"T BE GROWING MORE OR THICKER!!!

    THen they had me go to the doctor and CHECK MY HOROMONES WHICH TURNED OUT TO BE FINE!!!

    These people have switched management like 6 times in the last 2 years.

    Then they tried telling me... well we got the new laser machine, we can offer you a "buy a treatment for one part of your body and get the other one free plus we will give you microderm treatments free"


    The only reason I keep going back is because I have the hope of ONE day working!! but I DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO NOW?!!!

    Last year I had paid money to continue the laser treatments.

    I cant believe this is happening to me????? I have to shave EVERY DAY like a MAN!!!

    I would never imagine doing any harm to anyone !!! I can only imagine how many lives they have destroyed!!!
    Please help !!! SHould I SUE??? keep going for treatments in hope of it one day NOT BURNING MY FACE AND ACTUALLY TAKING THE HAIR OUT? should I ask for my money back????

    ++++++++++++++Please Help!++++++++++++++++

    1 Votes
  • Je
    Jessica Jun 11, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I could have written this complaint myself. I, too, have gone to ALC for almost 2 years. I went for 11 sessions, 4 of them being double passes. I was burned 3 times (blisters), and I paid $6, 000 (yeah, SIX THOUSAND) dollars that they are not willing to refund. They started a "nonresponder protocol" that they have just decided to stop in the middle of after claiming they saw no hair in the pictures (Yet they refuse to address my request for copies of the pictures) that were taken after not shaving for two weeks. And then contradicted themselves by telling me to keep coming in for treatments for the other year of my guarantee.
    They (read: EVA and JOANNE) are now not responding to my numerous phone calls and messages. I filed with the BBB last year and ALC refuses to respond to their attempts at contact. I am now in the process of getting a lawyer to sue them.

    I have emailed you.

    1 Votes
  • Va
    Vanessa Delgadillo Jul 09, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I am a former clinic manager located in El Paso, TX. I can tell you that American Laser Center is a very deceptive company. They send us to extensive sales training seminars. After being with the company for a year I had start to get at least one complaint a day about the treatments not working. When I questioned Dr. Kanase about this he explain to continue to treat the patients and shorten the time in between treatments. With no change the patients progress I met with him again and refuse to address the problem. I got a call from Viviana Chavez the Vice president that told me to sell and not worry about any thing else. I told her I could not do that without having some sort of a response for these patients. She said to do my job and not worry about anything else. That I was hired to sell. Later that week the clinic manager in Tulsa emailed me a story that ran on her local news. Alc was being investigated by the Oklahoma Medical Board and Medical Examiner office. I immediately question Dr. Kanase again he gave me some general answer about not being able to share information about this until the lawyers say it is ok. Shortly after I was fired and was replace with another manager with no explanantion. I was told I was not meeting company standards.

    0 Votes
  • Ma
    Mary Sep 16, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    just got the call saying i won ... looked them up on the web read your messages and called a friend who had attended the same bridal show --of course she had also "won" . She was just about to go for the appointment!

    Thank you for helping us stop before we started.

    I am going to complain to the bridal show people.

    1 Votes
  • Ba
    Barbara Sanders Sep 22, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    You can't imagine how happy I am to have stumbled into your site! I have been dealing with ALC since approx. 2004! Yea, four years of total unprofessional and fly-by-night clinic(s) and employees both local and corporate.

    My story is lengthy and very similar to some of those I read. However, I had consulted an attorney back in 2005 for help, but I only received a recorded message from someone out of Michigan telling me that they would do nothing to rectify my situation. We were living in Houston, TX, when day after day I saw ads in the Houston Chronicle for American Lazer Centers offering specials. I have been bothered with unsightly hair growth on my face and body and attempted every other source, except lazer treatment. The price was not cheap but okay; so I decided to try ALC. Big mistake! After paying upfront $1, 650, I received only three treatments (never by the same technician). When it was time for the 4th treatment, ALC informed me that they were closing that clinic in downtown Houston and I should go to another one. Fortunately, I found one close to my home in Cypress, TX. I had two more treatments there when they suggested that I have my forearms lazered. So, for an additional $1, 600, I signed on the dotted line. That was the last time I ever so them. My husband was transferred to AR and I asked ALC if they would refund that amount, plus the remainder of the unused treatments? I wrote a letter, tried to access them online, telephoned all to no avail. I had my attorney write a letter for me with no response. One day I found a message on my answering machine (months later) saying that they would NOT refund ANY money. I would have to just look for another ALC and they would transfer my records there. Of course, the closest ALC was Dallas (7 hrs. away). Couldn't do that. One night I was listening to the late news out of Tulsa, OK, where ALC was closed down because they had no physician on staff. The next day I called only to find out that they had hired a physician's assistant and were back up and running. I asked if they could get my records from Texas and they agreed. So, in January 2008, I began my treatments at ALC in Tulsa, OK. That very first appt. rendered me no treatment as they said that I had too much "sun-damage" to lazer further. They convinced me that I required Skin Tightening and Toning which amounted to an additional $3, 300. So, you're the doctor, I said. Okay, and I put it on my Care Credit account. There paid in full. That's where it ended. I made an appt. for the next week to get started but later that week they called me and said they would have to reschedule, as the manager that sold the new treatments had been fired and also they had to doctor.

    That's how it's been since. The next manager was fired in August and now I'm told the clinic is closing. Guess what? I've just lost again. Please tell me what to do first.

    Barbara Sanders

    1 Votes
  • Ti
    tina Van Kesteren Aug 30, 2011

    American laser center ripped me off how do I fight back? I have tried Barber and cosmotology schools complaints and the care 1 credit card co and ALS and no one will help
    Back in February 2008, I went to a bridal show in Citrus Heights, CA. While I was there, I entered several contests for various bridal gifts and beauty treatments. Within 3 days of the bridal fair, I received a phone call from American Laser Center (ALC) to tell me that I had won a prize for $350 worth of laser treatments. I went to ALC on 2/29/08 to collect the prize and spoke to Jen, the sales manager. She was a very high pressure sales person. ALC specializes in laser hair removal but Jen told me that I could use my prize money for foto-facial treatments. I didn't know what that was and she said that it is for wrinkle removal. She said that it was a safe, quick procedure with no recovery time. I asked if it hurts and Jen said no. Then she told me that the foto facial package with my prize money costs $2, 752.31. I told her that I couldn't afford that and she told me that she would sign me up for their credit card (Care Credit. She told me that if I qualified, it would be low, monthly payments. I didn't think that I would qualify, but I agreed. She signed me up and I was approved in a matter of minutes. Jen set up my appointments right away. My first treatment was on 3-6-08 for a foto facial. I was told that an esthetician would be performing the procedure. During the treatment, I told the esthetician that it was burning my face and she said that she would "go softer". That helped a little, but it still burned. When I got home, my face was red and burning. I called Jen at ALC and told her that I didn't want to do any more foto facials because it was very painful, unlike what she had told me and my face was red. Jen proceeded to tell me that to remove the redness, I needed to have the next procedure in the package, which was microdermabrasion. She convinced me to proceed with this treatment, which I had on 3-19-08. Jen also told me that this procedure would not be painful. The same esthetician performed this treatment and it was was more painful than the foto facial. Again, the esthetician said "I'll go softer", which seemed to help a little. When it was over, I went home and my face was still red and burning. I called Jen and told her that I wanted to cancel the rest of the treatments because of the burning pain and redness. She was very angry with me and said that "you can't cancel because you have already had several treatments". I told her no, that I had only had two treatments - one foto facial and one microdermabrasion. She angrily told me that I would have to take the matter up with Care Credit. I called Care Credit and they told me that any refund would have to come from ALC. I told Care Credit that I had already spoken with ALC, so Care Credit advised me that they would mail a dispute form to me. I received the form in about a week, filled it out and sent it back. Approximately one month later, Care Credit sent a letter to me stating that they would not issue a refund and that they felt that the charges were valid. I called Care Credit and the ALC corporate office and requested another dispute form. I received the second dispute form approximately one week later, filled it out and returned it to Care Credit, but also sent a copy to the ALC corporate office. This time, I received a letter dated 7/1/08 from Care Credit stating that they had issued a credit to my account in the amount of $1910.77. This leaves a balance of $841.54 from the original amount of $2752.31. There was no explanation for why there was a balance so I called Care Credit to find out why. They told me that ALC was still charging me for the two treatments and some Ameripure post face lotion, which did not help ease the burning as ALC had stated. They told me that because the treatments that I had were not part of a package anymore, they were more expensive. I asked them about the $350 prize money and they told me that it only applied toward the package price, not toward individual treatments.

    0 Votes

Post your comment