I am sharing this story because this deal has not only taken it’s toll personally but is destroying my childrens lives as well. My kids are now being personally attacked because of this. I’m done holding my tongue.
I am putting my personal life in the public eye. Today, the last straw was drawn and crossed.
This has been a four year ongoing court battle. My ex husband built his diner in 2001. He opened as part of a franchise. When his term on the contract was up, he asked to separate from the franchise. We knew this was going to be a battle. This man has cost us upward of $300,000.00 in just attorneys fees. To kind of sum it up, after asking to leave the franchise, the owner decided he wanted to buy us out. He had 5 days to do so by his own franchise agreement. After initially meeting with him and refusing to just give him our business he disappeared for 14 months. Never showing up with one offer to purchase. When he re appeared in 2014, he decided to go right to filing in federal court. Again, he could not do that as his agreement stated we had to go to mediation/arbitration first. The judge ruled on a number of issues that had to be taken care of before a federal hearing could take place. At that one and only federal hearing to date, our opposing counsel himself stated that the two parties agreed there was no franchise agreement. Therefore, all he could sue us for was trademark, trade dress and the non compete clause. We did go over our time frame to change and openly admitted it and offered to pay for the time that it took us to change over. Not a big deal. Its all very ridiculous because in the end, our arbitrator ruled in favor of the claimant of approximately $170,000.00. That would be fine how ever, during all this four years we have been harassed, had documents stolen and given to the claimant which he paid people to do, our accounts have been openly disclosed to him through multiple institutions as well the Utah State Tax Commission. He made promises to pay on our accounts then didn’t show up which cost us disruption and penalties we made no deals on. This man also openly admitted to destruction of evidence in deposition. He neglected to tell his attorney that one of his businesses closed during our arbitration. The problem we had with that was that particular establishment was one of two of his diners they kept comparing us to. A few weeks ago I discovered that he had also failed to disclosed his wife has a current divorce case pending…therefore, he cannot buy or sell anything until their case is over. This guy is so low that he had his own wife removed from his corporation by his imaginary board. He states he owns 67% of all shares so he his the board. He has threatened to set his wife up for company embezzlement. The end kicker is the best. He paid my husbands ex wife to not only lie at deposition, but has convinced her to try to help make us transfer our business over to the two of them….along with our bank who was told not to disclose or make any deals with him. My husbands ex gave up her interest in the diner years ago in lieu of child support. She isn’t on the loan anymore. We are being told we not only have to hand over our business for what we owe but we would get no attorneys fees. He would graciously drop our amount he is suing us for down to $40,000.00 to be paid by us. Our attorney blew him out of the water in arbitration. When the ruling came in it was though he never even made a final brief. The arbitrator was so one sided it was unreal. There again, was he tainted in some way? This whole thing stinks openly of deceit and wrong doing against us. This case should have ended at his failure to show up and purchase within the first five days of our notice. Another fun tidbit. During the whole course of this case the franchise owner not once showed up with any documents he was asked for. We have remained honest and given everything asked for. He has never provided a copy of his own offering circular or franchise agreement. I have all the court documents, deposition recordings, letters emails etc. I can provide everything you would need to see I am telling the truth. Whatever happened to a fair and reasonable justice system? There is a price for everything and anyone can be bought or sold in an open market these days. Including our government. What a world we live in.
The official Arbitration ruling was for $170,000.00 in favor of plaintiff Brad Turner. HRD owner ( Jeff Smith) was also told he had to sell his establishment on a one sided, low ball figure of $370,000.00 appraisal to Brad Turner owner of One Man Band Diners in Utah. ( Which I must note, there was a stipulation that the only appraisal that would be recognized was one done by a third party appraiser agreed upon by both parties. The arbitrator seemed to have missed that memo and allowed Turners appraisal. While one of the other producing establishments in Turners franchise appraised at $550,000.00 by the same appraiser, Smiths only appraised at $370,000.00. That’s smells foul even to the average person.) Turner failed to show up with 100% funding. Therefore, his chance to purchase walked out the door.
His new plan incorporates trying to force his soon to be ex wife into cosigning a loan to buy the establishment. This man knows no boundaries. He thinks he is above the law when in reality, he is a sneaky, under handed, deceitful snake in the grass. Who continues to get away with everything he does.
I recently discovered that one of the two establishments he actually owns in the franchise, makes approximately one-third of what Smiths establishment grosses monthly. Turner’s establishment in Spanish Fork Utah made $13,000 gross revenue ( according to a potential new buyer) while Smiths Santaquin establishment grossed just under $40,000 for August 2016. It is obvious why Turner would want Smiths working, successful business. Turners establishments are filthy, run down places as well as serving less than quality food. His prices are approximately 20% higher than Smiths for crap food, service and quality.
Our next court ordered mediation is October 18 followed by the Federal Court Trial November 8.
Overall, this case is a running 4 year joke. Where is the justice?
Hailee Smith September 2016