VERNON HILLS, IL --Not everyone looking for love can be on "The Bachelorette." An Illinois woman told the I-Team a dating service let her down, and she's now demanding a $3,800 refund.
Jacqueline Peters is a busy doctor and a divorced mother of three involved in a dating service dispute. This bachelorette said that matchmakers set her up with men who were missing the qualities she specifically requested.
"It makes me really upset. Especially for this amount of money," Peters said.
Peters said she has five qualities she was looking for in a man. She shared them in writing with the dating service "It's Just Lunch" when she purchased a $3,800, six-month membership.
"I said, 'I'm a professional. I'm pretty tall. It's pretty hard to find someone my height, my educational background.' She said, 'Describe what you're looking for,' so I said, 'Somebody a little over 5'8", somebody ideally 6' or taller, thin build. I like to run and travel, somebody with the similar interest. Talk, dark and handsome."
But the Vernon hills doctor says on the first date: "I meet this guy. He's at least 2 inches shorter than me and 10 years older than myself...It wasn't what I was looking for."
And she also says a second date was similar. She claims that both men were shorter than her and not "health conscious" like she had requested.
"As far as height, I've always dated taller men. I like to wear heels, maybe an inch or two. I just like my men just a little bit taller. I put the 6-foot guideline. After the second guy, I said, "Do you have anyone my height?" She said, "No."
Peters said she then asked to expand her search to Milwaukee.
"They said they don't have anybody. I said I would like my money back because this is not what I was told," Peters said.
But the contract she signed said that "membership fees are nonrefundable."
Peters filed a charge-back dispute with her credit card. It was denied after It's Just Lunch responded to the credit card company saying: "IJL does not issue refunds outside of the detailed cancellation policy that is outlined in the contract as well, per Illinois state law."
But the contract does say partial refunds may be available, at the company's discretion, if It's Just Lunch can't provide "an average minimum of one introduction per month based on the criteria established by the client."
"I felt like I was upfront with them. This is what I'm looking for, can you provide this?" Peters said.
The owner of It's Just Lunch Chicago declined an on-camera interview, but sent a one-page statement saying employees listen to customer concerns and they cannot guarantee chemistry, a long term relationship or marriage, and matchmaking differs from online dating in that it is not just about checking boxes.
They also added, "We presented Ms. Peters the details of her first two matches and she did not decline either of them."
The company also said that Peters did not contact ILJ's Client Service Manager as the part of the process agreed to in the contract.
But Peters is not the only disappointed dater. In January, some affiliates of It's Just Lunch entered a preliminary settlement phase for $60 million in vouchers and $4.75 million for customers from other states who took part in a class action lawsuit. It also outlines an agreement to change business practices. The independently-owned Chicago franchise was not involved in the suit. And the local company adds that: "None of the claims in the New York City class-action suit dating back nine years are specific to It's Just Lunch Chicago."
The lawsuit claims the company "almost completely ignores the customer's stated preferences" like age range, religion or marital status.
IJL said: "We are very pleased to have reached a preliminary resolution for these claims... Having this behind us enables us to focus on what we do best: using our extensive experience and proven methods to help our clients make positive personal connections."
Peters said she's going to date all on her own now.
"I was taken for a ride and I really don't want anyone to go through this," she said.
In the statement the owner of It's Just Lunch Chicago also said Peters would have felt differently if she would have given the process more of a chance and experienced more than just two dates.
It's Just Lunch in Chicago also pointed out it's A+ rating with the Chicago Better Business Bureau.
Full details on the IJL settlement
It's Just Lunch Chicago full statement
BBB review of It's Just Lunch