RadarOnline.com can exclusively reveal that an alleged ex-employee ambushed the Flip or Flop couple with an explosive federal lawsuit claiming that they owe him $12,800 in back wages and $25,000 in commission.
Jonathan Schmier claimed that he reached out to Pete DeBest (the operating manager of the El Moussa’s company Next Level Property Investments) in January 2016 and was put in touch with someone who gave him a “50/50” partnership split to do work for them, according to the misspelled and grammatically incorrect documents filed on January 27 in the United States District Court of North Carolina.
He claimed he “was promised a commission of $5,00 per home” for his work, but that “not one penny has been paid” to him.
Schmier reported that he was told he was “never an employee” in October 2016, after the work on a series of North Carolina homes had been completed. When he contacted HGTV about the matter in January 2017, he was told that the show was only shot in California “and he was shocked” that Ruzbin had asked him to find properties in North Carolina. He also alleged that the couple did not have the rights to use the HGTV logo "in any way shape fashion or form" sp.
He claimed that he attempted to speak with De Best and the El Moussas regarding the matter, but they “have blocked his e-mail address and face book pages and phone numbers in an attempt to avoid paying” him sp.
Schmier also filed an application to waive the court costs he incurred when filing the suit, claiming that he was self-employed with only 18 years of education. He reported that his average monthly income was $975, and he only had -$124.36 on hand when he filed.
A source close to the El Moussas told Radar that they never even met him, and are confident they will win the lawsuit.
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