Friday, January 6, 2012

Action taken against Jeremy Collins of Pennsylvania (due to duplicate account link to Brett Rutecky of Pennsylvania)

Note: this is not about arbitration fraud but about general fraud instead. This post has been updated to include the most up-to-date information.

The user Jeremy Collins of Pennsylvania was detected by the new security system as being another user who was ejected from the site (Brett Rutecky of Pennsylvania). Brett had been ejected from the site previously for multiple fraud accounts (seven): which he created to hide his numerous lost arbitrations from new employers. Each time he would also lose more arbitrations, pick unnecessary fights with employers, and the process would continue. Brett then started using family and friends names to setup accounts and cash checks, to try to avoid detection.

Numerous things were matched by the system between Jeremy Collins and Brett Rutecky.  (The system uses extremely sophisticated behavioral analysis of site data, far beyond simple matching on emails and ip addresses).  As one example, Jeremy Collins created this job for his worker to fix his website:  However, the WHOIS for revealed the site does not belong to a Jeremey Colllins, but actually belongs to Brett Rutecky.  There were many other matches like this.
Despite the obvious links, we still wanted to be give Jeremey a chance to explain himself (since a duplicate account results in a closed account). So Jeremy was given the opportunity to provide identification, so he could be paid the funds in his account ($347.00). However, he refused to do this.

As an alternative option, Jeremy was given the option to sign a contract saying he would not return to the site under a duplicate account.  A contract was created by vWorker, which included a clause that Jeremy would be excused from the disintermediation (opt-out) clause in his Worker Agreement if he notified his employers of the true reason he was being removed from the vWorker site. Jeremy agreed to the clause and stated that he would notify his employers after he received payment of the $347.00 in his account. Both vWorker and Jeremy signed the contract and the funds in Jeremy’s account were paid out. However, once Jeremy received his payment, he refused to notify his employers. Therefore, the disintermediation (opt-out) clause is still being enforced at this time.

If you are a previous employer of Jeremey and wish to switch to another worker, we will be happy to assist you.  If you wish to work with him offsite, please remember that you cannot do so unless you pay the fee specified in the disintermediation opt-out clause of their Employer Agreement.  Any employer who works offsite with Jeremy without following the opt-out procedure, will be breaking their contract with vWorker and subject to the disintermediation penalty (see below) as well as forfeiting their account.  If you have any questions about this, please let us know.


Disintermediation (and opt-out).
Employer agrees to pay Worker exclusively through the payment channels made available on the site and will not bypass it by paying through other channels (i.e. "disintermediation"). Worker also agrees not to participate in disintermediation as well. If disintermediation occurs, both Employer and Worker agree to each pay a penalty fee to Exhedra that is the greater of:

  1. All Exhedra fees that would have been charged for all payments, plus a penalty of 20%.
  2. $2,750
Additionally, Exhedra may (at its discretion) also close both accounts, and if so, all parties will additionally forfeit all unspent funds in those accounts. Employer and worker authorize that the penalty fee can be assessed from either of them or a combination. They also authorize it can be obtained in any way necessary by Exhedra, including charging of any credit cards on file.

Both employer and worker also agree that if they request or encourage disintermediation, then they will be subject to the same penalties as the act of disintermediation itself. Both employer and worker agree to alert Exhedra if another party requests, solicits or participates in intermediation.

  • Opt-out options.

    A specific employer can pay a specific worker directly and bypass the site (disintermediation), without penalty, under the following two opt-out situations:

    a) Paid opt-out: Employer or worker pays Exhedra an opt-out fee that is the greater of:
    1. The total Exhedra fees charged from transactions between the two parties during the previous 365 days.
    2. $450

    b) Free opt-out: 3 years after the employer and worker were first brought together on the Exhedra site, the two may participate in disintermediation without charge.

    To perform a paid opt-out, parties also agree to notify Exhedra with the following information:

    1. User id and email addresses of both employer and worker.
    2. Whether this is a paid opt-out or a free opt-out.
    3. Who will pay the opt-out fee (if it applies)?
    Once the opt-out fee is charged by Exhedra (or the free opt-out has occurred), then both parties may freely participate in disintermediation with the other party.

Complete log of what happened: