The New York State Supreme Court for the county of New York ruled that a default judgment for $8.4 Million will be entered in favor of Franchise Acceptance Corporation (FAC), an affiliate of Burger King Corporation, and against La-Van Hawkins and two of his corporations. FAC's action seeks to recover amounts due and owed to it on 21 promissory notes. The presiding Judge rejected Hawkins' request for additional time extensions and directed FAC to submit a judgment against Hawkins and his corporations.
"We consider the judge's ruling to be a tremendous victory because it sends a clear message to Mr. Hawkins that the court will not tolerate his attempts to delay this action and avoid entry of a significant monetary judgment against him,'' said Howard Wolfson, outside legal counsel for FAC with the Manhattan-based law firm of Morrison, Cohen, Singer and Weinstein.
As part of the ruling, the court temporarily stayed execution of the judgment and gave Hawkins until October 26 to seek relief from the judgment. Mr. Hawkins was served notice of the lawsuit in July for failure to repay monies lent to him by FAC.
FAC is a special purpose entity established solely to lend to Burger King Franchisees in the U.S. and Canada. FAC is wholly owned by Diageo through one of its subsidiaries and, accordingly, is an affiliate of Burger King Corporation.