This photo shows the dining room of the Coldwater Cafe in Tipp City in 2010. Staff file photo by Jim Witmer

Restaurant lawsuit pitting mother against son takes a new turn

The Tipp City restaurant lawsuit that pits mother against son will proceed with some new faces in the courtroom.

Nicholas Hoover, the current owner of Coldwater Cafe in Tipp City, has hired new attorneys after his mother, Betty Peachey, who founded the restaurant, asked a Miami County Common Pleas judge to remove his original attorneys from the case.

FIRST REPORT: Coldwater Cafe lawsuit pits mother against son (February 2017)

Peachey made the request to disqualify Glen McMurry and the law firm Dungan & Lefevre of Troy because another member of the law firm had represented her on several matters during the time that she owned the restaurant, prior to turning it over to her son.

According to Peachey’s legal filings, attorneys for Dungan & Lefevre helped Peachey draw up the legal documents for the ownership of the restaurant — and now, some of the same documents are at the heart of the lawsuit.

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Hoover’s new attorneys are David P. Pierce and Jennifer R. Grewe of the Dayton law firm of Coolidge Wall Co. The change was made prior to a court hearing on Peachey’s request to have the Troy law firm removed from the case.

Peachey launched Coldwater Cafe in 1994. Her lawsuit, filed in Miami County Common Pleas Court in February, claims that her son reneged on a 2011 oral agreement to pay Peachey $40,000 per year for the rest of her life in exchange for her turning over full ownership of the restaurant to Hoover.

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Hoover, chef-owner of Coldwater Cafe, is seeking the dismissal of the lawsuit.

The lawsuit got a little more expensive for Peachey when she was fined $250 by Miami County Common Pleas Judge Jeanine Pratt for missing a May 11 hearing. Peachey had told the court through her attorney, Craig Matthews of Centerville, that she had recently moved from Arizona to upstate Michigan to start a new job and could not take leave on short notice without jeopardizing her employment.

Miami County court records show that Peachey paid the $250 fine last month.

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Coldwater Cafe has been a popular dining destination for several years. Earlier this year, the Tipp City restaurant was included in the online-reservations website OpenTable.com’s 2017 list of the “100 Most Romantic Restaurants in America.”

No trial date has been set. Hoover’s new attorneys have an Aug. 7 deadline to file a response to a pretrial motion filed by Peachey.

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