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Call Kurtis: Would-Be Bride Takes Venue To Court Over Wedding Deposit

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Call Kurtis goes to court, tracking the case of a would-be bride who canceled her wedding months in advance.

When the reception venue booked another event for that day, but refused to refund her deposit, she called Kurtis.

We told you this summer, Power’s Mansion Inn in Auburn refused to refund her money.

We got involved but couldn’t get the two sides to come to an agreement.

So, she and her mom took the owner to court.

“Ms. Steiner has contacted Call Kurtis. We have been interviewed in not the most favorable light,” said Alfred Lee, Owner, Power’s Mansion Inn.

Alfred Lee facing off with would-be bride, Carolynn Steiner, in court.

Last October, she cancelled her wedding, two weeks after signing the contract at his venue.

“I broke everything off, just after he had bought the ring. It was very difficult time,” said Carolynn.

10 months out from the big day, Carolynn and her mom, Jonnie, felt they should get at least some of their $5,750 deposit back, especially considering the venue booked another wedding.

But Alfred refused, pointing to the contract that said “non-refundable.”

Leading to this day in small claims court.

“Regardless of whether or not we signed this contract, under California case law, a vendor is not allowed to profit on a cancelled event that has been rebooked,” argued Jonnie Steiner in court.

That rebooking? Alfred revealed to the judge was a $14,999 wedding… higher than Carolynn’s $11,500 planned wedding.

But he argued the cancellation cost him money in advertising and hours of manpower.

“We spent a lot of time meeting with brides and a lot of labor touring these brides,” said Alfred.

The judge wanted proof.

“I’m asking you for that number. What is the cost that your company actually spent on this wedding, prior to knowing when it was cancelled?” asked Judge Brian D. Myers, Placer County Superior Court.

Alfred couldn’t provide any documentation to back his argument.

The judge ruled Carolyn and her mom should get some of their money back and took into account Alfred’s advertising costs plus an estimated 30 hours he says he and his staff put into the planning.

“That would leave a balance of $3140 that I order you to return back to them,” said Judge Myers.

Including court costs, the total refund… $3,245.

“Personally it’s probably not the fairest but I have to respect the judge’s decision,” said Alfred.

Jonnie and Carolynn are glad it’s over.

“I was thankful to be getting something back, especially for my parents, wasn’t my money to begin with,” said Carolynn.

Alfred has promised to pay Jonnie by October 31st.

We’ll keep you posted to see if it all works out.

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