Real estate broker wins his portion of dissolved company
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
ASPEN ” Despite a $620,200 judgment against him, local real estate broker George Huggins wants a piece of the company he helped create.
A jury ruled in favor of his partners ” Douglas Faurer, Bruce Faurer and Jerrod Iverson ” in a civil matter in April. The dispute was over Huggins leaving the short-lived real estate firm, Alpine Property Real Estate.
The three men, all partners in Alpine Property Management in Snowmass Village, brought Huggins onboard to create Alpine Property Real Estate in 2004.
At first the business went well, earning some $2 million in commission in 2005, but squabbles over broker fees led Huggins to quit.
And when Huggins took off with the phones and office supplies, his partners sued.
The court awarded the partners a $620,200 judgment, including $490,000 in lost profits and $65,000 for Huggins’ use of client information, as well as $200 for a civil theft of office supplies.
But Monday in an Aspen courtroom, Huggins and his attorney, J. Cope out of Boulder, attempted to reargue the case.
Senior District Court Judge Frank Plaut denied a request to revisit the jury verdict, but awarded Huggins a minor victory.
Plaut said that despite being a “bad boy” in his dealings with his partners, Huggins was entitled to his 25 percent share of assets when the company was dissolved.
“He remains a one-quarter shareholder in [the company],” Judge Plaut said. “It’s going to be four ways, not three.”
The judge also shot down a motion by the three partners asking for interest on what was owed on the lost profits in the period prior to the April trial.
Both sides will agree on an outside accounting firm to crunch the numbers and determine what, if anything, Huggins is owed.
“If he pays all our judgment, we’re happy to pay him if he’s owed anything,” said Matthew Ferguson, attorney for the three partners.
But Huggins’ quarter-share of the profits also means a quarter-share of any expenses or liabilities after Huggins left the company, Ferguson said.
And Ferguson argued that Huggins should not be given a credit against the $620,000 judgment nor gain anything from the company break-up until he pays the sum total of what he owes.
Attorneys will meet again in coming months for a hearing over some $150,000 in attorneys fees.
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