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Bankruptcy lawyer says cleaners and customers will have trouble getting money from Surrey-based cleaning company Scrubbi

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Surrey, B.C. -

Nakul Saggar is an international student from India who lives with seven roommates. In order to pay the bills while going to school, he picked up a job with Surrey-based cleaning company Scrubbi.

The 19-year-old says he started in May, but noticed his payments not coming through starting in September. He says he's owed around $2,000.

"It means a lot to me," said Saggar. "I have to pay my tuition, I have to pay my rent, I have to pay my car insurance. It means a lot."

Saggar says the company has ignored his inquiries about pay, yet he still receives message reminders from the company for scheduled cleanings.

On Wednesday, CTV News heard from a Scrubbi head office employee who said he was notified by CEO Daniel Deckert that operations have been shut down.

CTV News went to Scrubbi headquarters in Surrey Thursday and it appeared no one was in the office. However, the Scrubbi website remains operational.

Saggar is one of dozens of cleaning contractors who have come forward claiming to be owed thousands of dollars by the company. Scrubbi originally told its contractors the delayed payments were due to an issue with the bank.

Scrubbi customers have also come forward claiming to be out thousands of dollars after paying upfront for a full year's worth of service.

"Because they've prepaid, they've requested a cancellation or refund and have had some difficulty with it," said Simone Lis of the Better Business Bureau, which gave Scrubbi an F rating.

"The company has had 34 complaints in our 3-year reporting period.”

Bankruptcy lawyer Geoffrey Dabbs confirmed to CTV News that the company, as of Thursday evening, has not filed for bankruptcy. However, in these situations, he says it's usually only a matter of time.

"Under federal law, either the company can do it or a creditor can force them into bankruptcy," said Dabbs, partner with Gehlen, Dabbs and Cash LLP.

"I think this will likely happen here given the size of the company and given the fact that there needs to be a methodical way of dealing with it."

Dabbs says the contracted cleaners and customers will have a hard time seeing any compensation, as the company has to first deal with taxes and the bank.

“The one wrinkle for people who are unsecured creditors – and that would include a contractor or customers – is they’re on the bottom of the priority list,” Dabbs said.

CTV News tried reaching out to Scrubbi CEO Daniel Deckert and has emailed the comapany several times over the past two weeks, but has not received a response.  

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