Former EF Hutton suspends operations, in $12 million debt

Prominent downtown Springfield building now subject of foreclosure lawsuit

One of the most prominent buildings in downtown Springfield is now the subject of a foreclosure court filing that alleges payments on a mortgage is delinquent millions of dollars.

Peer Street Funding, Inc. filed a complaint on a commercial note and to foreclose on 1 Main Street, now known as EF Hutton Tower, in Clark County Common Pleas Court. The lawsuit also asks the court to order the building be sold so the debt can be paid.

READ: EF Hutton halts operations temporarily, firm says

The lawsuit alleges Hutn, Inc., who has owned the building since September 2016, owes PS Funding more than $4.5 million on a mortgage the company took out in 2018.

“Defendant Hutn, Inc., formerly known as EF Hutton America, Inc., has defaulted under the terms of the note as well as the security agreement,” the lawsuit states. “There is due to the plaintiff, $4,656,000, plus interest at the rate of 18 percent per year from November 1, 2018….”

The building is 10 plus stories in the heart of downtown Springfield and commonly known as the former Credit Life Building.

Hutn, Inc. purchased and moved into the building in late 2016. The move came with promise of more than 400 new jobs and many city and business leaders believed the company would help rejuvenate downtown.

However, after several failed attempts to get into the mobile phone industry, social media industry, cryptocurrency and the online trading industry, the company’s websites have gone dark and its future is unclear.

A request for comment from Dimas Law Group, who is representing Hutn, Inc., was not immediately returned. However, in a news release earlier this month, the company said it was trying to work with PS Funding to resolve the delinquent debt.

MORE: EF Hutton: HUTN behind on property taxes, status unclear

PS Funding isn’t the only entity that is owed money in connection to EF Hutton Tower. Hutn, Inc. also said it was attempting to settle a $7.5 million unsecured note issued by local non-profit SpringForward.

SpringForward Executive Director Ted Roest said the money owed to the non-profit is payments on the 1 Main Street building.

SpringForward received the building for free by way of a donation from Jim and Nike Lagos. The donation was completed the same day EF Hutton obtained the building.

On top of those delinquent building payments, Hutn, Inc. also owes Clark County more than $67,000 in property taxes overall, including $58,857.76 on EF Hutton Tower.

“These delinquent taxes consist of second-half 2017 taxes payable in July 2018, penalty, Dec. 1 interest, first half 2018 real estate taxes due Feb. 15, 2019, and penalty,” Clark County Treasurer Stephen Metzger said in an email.

EXTRA: EF Hutton hasn’t submitted information necessary to get incentive

Hutn., Inc. previously said it is working to pay back some debts, but didn’t specify which ones.

The lawsuit filed in Clark County Common Pleas Court asks the court for a judgment against Hutn, Inc. and for the court to order that it be sold.

“Order the subject real estate to be sold free and clear of all liens, claims and interest by the sheriff of this county; the plaintiff be paid out of the proceeds of such sale the amounts due and incurred that all liens be marshaled,” the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit also asks the court to appoint someone to collect rents and profits from the company and put it towards the obligation owed to PS Funding.

A request for comment sent to Sottile and Barile Attorneys at Law, who is representing PS Funding in the foreclosure lawsuit wasn’t returned.

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