FOX43 Finds Out: Can you get your money back?

HARRISBURG, Pa -- Mandy Watts and her fiance' Wyatt are counting down the days until their wedding in September.

However, what dress she'll be wearing when she walks down the aisle is in question.

"I don't think it really set in. There's no way because I was just joking about this and now here it's actually happening," said Watts.

Watts bought a dress from Alfred Angelo in Lower Paxton Township, Dauphin County.

The total was $1,167.59.

It was expected to arrive in august.

Until, the store in Dauphin County  and all the other stores across the country shutdown in early July and the company filed for bankruptcy.

The bankruptcy filing shows the company listed thousands of creditors Alfred Angelo owes money to including several in PA.

At first,  Watts was a bit stressed thinking she would lose that money.

"Everything happens for a reason and At the end of the day I know everything will work out. "

That positive attitude worked.

Watts paid with a credit card for the dress.

She let her credit card company know what happened.

"We just received notification today that the credit card company that the credit card company is handling everything. That's one less thing for us to worry about."

Now the challenge is getting a new dress in time because typically brides start looking for a gown a year in advanced.

However, Watts says she's humbled by how many people want to help.

"Now I have a new problem. I have a few dresses to chose from that blow my dress out of the water."

Jill Brown at Cocoa Couture is one of the people who are trying to help brides like Watts.

"To find out like a couple of months before your wedding that you're not going to get your dress, I can't even imagine what they're feeling," Brown said.

Her shop in Hershey is offering discounts to Alfred Angelo customers.

"The ones who are in October and November, even December, January - they need to probably purchase a dress off the rack," said Brown.

While Brown is surprised how quickly Alfred Angelo shut down, she's not surprised a bridal shop filed for bankruptcy.

She says TV shows that glamorize the dress shopping experience has actually hurt the industry.

That's because some brides want to feel like a princess when they try on the dress even though brown says many brides end up not buying the dress online for a cheaper price.

"They're hurting themselves, they're going to put everyone out of business."

She says the average price of an Alfred Angelo dress was probably about $1,000.

Dresses at Cocoa Couture average a bit higher.

"Most of these in here go to like 1,200, 1,500, 1,800."

Brown doesn't deny that you can find a cheaper price online.

She says it's the quality that may not be up to par.

"They use manufactures pictures but then they send you a dress that looks nothing like it."

Brown believes if the industry keeps going this way, there are going to be a lot more brides losing out on money when shops close.

"I would say 10 years from now there will be no bridal salons."

Even though many shops are stepping in to help Alfred Angelo brides and some credit card companies helping too, there are still people who have no answers.

Because Alfred Angelo filed for bankruptcy, it may not be easy for those brides to ever get answers if they paid with cash or a check.

That's why Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro wants brides impacted to contact his office.

"We have to look at the underlying reasons for the bankruptcy, what things were predicated upon, what assurances were made to the public. Bottom line is we're fighting to make sure Pennsylvanians get their money back."

He couldn't give a specific time line on where his investigation stands.

However, he says he's working as quickly as he can to help brides in Pennsylvania.

"We're going to do everything we can to try to help you get your money back so you can go buy a beautiful dress and have a wonderful day for your wedding. Anything we can do on that front we're trying to do right now."

Some people who bought dresses from Alfred Angelo have are getting letters in the mail this week.

FOX43 has a copy of one of those letters and it's from the bankruptcy trustee for the company.

It's hard to see,  but it states there is a meeting of creditors which are people who are owed money from Alfred Angelo,

That meeting is on August 28th at one in the afternoon in West Palm Beach, Florida.

If you can't make that meeting, the deadline to file a proof of claim against Alfred Angelo is November 27th.

This isn't the first time a bridal shop has closed in the commonwealth, leaving brides with no dress.

Kaufman's wedding world shut down back in 2004.

That was a bridal company based in Pennsylvania.

At the time,  Kaufman's wedding world was around for more than 100 years.

The company did end up filing for bankruptcy.

Eventually, a judge did require the store to reopen for 4 days to allow some brides to go back in the get their wedding dresses that were still in the stores.

All of this can be a mess and a headache for people who shell out a lot of money and end up with nothing in return.

Here are some ways to avoid that.

Pay for big items like a wedding dress or even furniture with a credit card.

If a company unexpectedly closes, your credit card company will likely still give you the money back and fight the company itself.

Also, if you do find yourself in this situation you're probably not the only one.

The PA Attorney General says you can file a complaint with his consumer protection unit for them to look into the issue.