Wine Spill Unprotected By Furniture Stain-Guard Plan - NBC 7 San Diego

Wine Spill Unprotected By Furniture Stain-Guard Plan

A Carlsbad woman paid extra for a furniture protection plan but when she spilled a glass of wine on her couch, the company wouldn’t help her.



    Cathy Woith accidentally spilled red wine on her sectional and the company backing the VIP protection plan she purchased along with the couch wouldn't budge. She showed NBC 7's Consumer Bob and the NBC 7 Responds the warranty's fine print and they worked to get her a full replacement. (Published Tuesday, April 4, 2017)

    “I had a glass of red wine right there and I was just walking back to sit down and I...I don’t know how I did it,” Cathy Woith said.

    She said she accidentally spilled a glass of red wine on her cream-colored furniture she purchased from Living Spaces in 2014. After she spilled the wine, Cathy said she wasn’t too worried since she paid close to $500 extra for a five-year “stain guard protection” plan with the company Service USA.

    “The way it was presented also was that if it gets dirty, we’ll come out and clean it,” Cathy said.

    After blotting the wine stain, Cathy said she pulled out her paperwork and called Service USA. She said the company representative asked for her receipt, contract information, and photos of the damage.

    “Once she saw the pictures, she said sometimes if they can’t get it out they’ll replace it and I said ‘wow, that never even entered my mind,’” Cathy said.

    After weeks without hearing from the company, Cathy said she contacted Service USA again. This time, the company’s tune changed.

    “She just kept saying no, you cleaned it and I was like any normal person would blot and wipe with water, any normal person,” Cathy said.

    Cathy said her Service USA warranty information recommended blotting stains. When she brought this up to the representative, nothing changed. Cathy said the company wouldn’t even send a cleaning crew out to see her furniture. So, Cathy said she decided to call NBC 7 Responds.

    NBC 7 Responds reached out to Service USA but the company has not responded. A week after we reached out to the company, Cathy received an unexpected call.

    “I got a call from Living Spaces corporate office, not Service USA,” Cathy said.

    Cathy said a representative from Living Spaces called her and said although her furniture had since been discontinued, the store would offer a full replacement. She said Living Spaces acted above and beyond and she learned a valuable lesson.

    “Don’t eat or drink red wine on your couch, drink white wine,” Cathy said.

    The Federal Trade Commission recommends consumers weigh whether or not they should pay extra for coverage or warranties. For more information, including questions you can ask yourself when debating an extended warranty purchase, click here.

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