Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre, Lafourche Parish President Archie Chaisson III, and Lafourche Parish District Attorney Kristine Russell have created the Contractor Fraud Response Team to fight contractor fraud during the recovery efforts from Hurricane Ida.
As people begin to clean up their property and rebuild, we want to send a clear message to anyone seeking to take advantage of our citizens,” said Sheriff Webre. “Together, we will pursue, arrest and prosecute anyone committing contractor fraud in Lafourche Parish.”
A hotline has been established to report contractor fraud in Lafourche Parish. If you are a victim of contractor fraud, please call (985) 413-4498. Please leave a message with your name and contact information if there is no answer (due to service issues).
While the Contractor Fraud Response Team will investigate cases of fraud, prevention is also just as important. Citizens should check references and ensure the contractor is licensed, bonded and insured. Citizens who use an unlicensed contractor do so at their own risk of liability, no warranty, and no recourse for substandard work.
Any contractor working in Lafourche Parish MUST have an occupational license. Those can be obtained at the Lafourche Parish Mathews Government Complex, 4876 Highway 1 in Mathews. Contractors can begin the process by downloading a form online at lafourchegov.org/economic-development.
Citizens should also be alert to the warning signs of common contractor scams, such as door-to-door solicitations, demands for cash, unusually large down payments, no references, no permanent address, high-pressure sales or scare tactics, no insurance, or license, or no contract. If there is any concern, citizens are encouraged to photograph the contractor’s representative, vehicle, and license plate.
“As we begin to rebuild in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, we want to send a very clear message to those who would take advantage of our community in this vulnerable state – you will not go unchecked, and you will be prosecuted,” said District Attorney Russell.
Officials urge citizens to report suspected fraud even if they are unsure whether actual criminal fraud has been committed, or if it is a civil matter. All reports will be fully investigated.
Parish President Chaisson said, “Citizens should proceed with caution and follow the tips from the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office. Our local officials work as a team and will be diligent in monitoring activity throughout the parish.”