US Veteran gets free solar panels after company files for receivership in Wisconsin

According to court documents, which were filed in Wisconsin, Moxie Solar owes money to more than 4,600 people or businesses.
Published: Feb. 21, 2023 at 7:09 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Jeremy Zumbach, a US Veteran and dad of four kids, will get solar panels installed on his home in Marion for free.

Records, which our KCRG-TV9 i9 Investigative Team reviewed in January 2023, show he originally signed a contract with Moxie Solar to install the panels. But, the company took his money and closed down before the project was complete.

Zumbach was one of the 109 complaints the Iowa Attorney General’s Office said it received about Moxie Solar since 2020. All other solar companies, according to the Attorney General’s Office, received 55 complaints around a similar timeframe.

Energy Consultants Group, which is based in Anamosa, said the system they are installing for free will cost about $49,000. Multiple other solar installation companies contacted TV9 to help Zumbach finish the installation on his home.

Zumbach said he was surprised about the number of different vendors involved also trying to help finish the installation on his house, which was to lower his family’s electric bill. He said one distributor, which is out about $700,000, donated the solar panels used in the installation.

“I can’t thank them enough,” Zumbach said. “I mean there are so many people out there, who are less fortunate, who won’t be getting anything. I can’t be more thankful to them.”

According to court documents, which were filed in Wisconsin, Moxie Solar owes money to more than 4,600 people or businesses. They will have until April 24, 2023 to file a claim.

Richard Shuch, who is working with the receiver in the bankruptcy case, said it also sent out letters to former employees asking them to return any equipment belonging to the company.

Moxie Solar, which was based in North Liberty, filed with Iowa’s Secretary of State to change its name to New Moxie Solar in October 2022. Then, it registered to operate in Wisconsin under the new name in November 2022. It allowed a previous name for the company, Moxie Solar, Inc, to terminate in Wisconsin in October 2022.

Gregory Germain, who studies bankruptcy as a law professor at Syracuse University, said the venue rules for corporate/LLC bankruptcy filings are rather loose in an email. He said an entity can file for bankruptcy:

  • Where they are incorporated
  • Where they have their principal place of business
  • Where their principal assets are located during the majority of the 180-day period before bankruptcy
  • Where an affiliate has filed for bankruptcy

Germain said a famous example is Enron, which based in Houston filed for bankruptcy in New York. He said the infamous energy company had a small affiliate, which filed for bankruptcy, in New York and help it avoid all the employees and creditors in Texas from showing up at their hearings and making a fuss.

Zumbach, the US Veteran, said he plans to file a claim during the receivership proceedings. He said he’s concerned other people won’t try to apply by the April 24th deadline.