Bundaberg court housePhoto: Zach Hogg / NewsMail
Bundaberg court housePhoto: Zach Hogg / NewsMail Zach Hogg BUN110814CRT3

LAWSUIT: Tourism business owner sued for $200K

THE co-owner of 1770 Reef-Great Barrier Reef Eco Tours is being sued for more than $200,000.

Last month BTHR Pty Ltd filed a claim for $204,158.75 in damages against Katrina Mary Mergard in the District Court of Queensland.

The plaintiff company has also claimed $2,656.86 in interest and $2,416.45 in court fees from the tourism businesswoman.

The facts before the court allege Mrs Mergard breached a settlement deed she entered into in 2015.

According to the statement of claim lodged with the District Court, Mrs Mergard agreed to pay BTHR a debt settlement of $180,000 in 2015.

The claim alleges Mrs Mergard agreed to pay $1000 to BTHR every month from February 2018 until June 30, 2022.

However, the particulars of the deed settlement stated: "No money was received from the defendant for the June payment".

It is alleged no payment for July was received either.

After the claim, filed on behalf of BTHR in the Bundaberg Registry on July 23, is served upon Mrs Mergard, she will have 28 days to file a notice of intention to dispute it or raise a counter-claim.

Mrs Mergard and her husband Mark William Mergard declined to speak to the NewsMail.

Real Estate Now’s Katrina and Mark Mergard have everything from mag wheels, golf buggies and an amphibious vehicle in their auction arsenal.
Real Estate Now’s Katrina and Mark Mergard have everything from mag wheels, golf buggies and an amphibious vehicle in their auction arsenal. Scottie Simmonds

In 2010 BTHR entered into a contract with Marcal, Bedford Titley, Mr Mergard and Westminster Pty Ltd - a firm of which Katrina is listed as the guarantor.

Just over one year later, the contract was amended, where Mrs Mergard provided a guarantee for the payment of the $223,158.75 Westminster owed.

This prompted the aforementioned $180,000 settlement to be reached, according to the statement of claim.

BTHR claimed the agreement required Mrs Mergard pay no less than $500 a month until February 2017, after which, in May 2017, it was agreed no less than monthly instalments of $750 would be paid.

In February 2018 payments rose again, this time by $250 a month.

The claim alleges BTHR suffered a loss and damage of $204,158.75 as a result of the two breaches, which saw Westminster allegedly fail to pay instalments in June and July.

BTHR also claimed the entire sum was now due as per the agreement.

"In the event of the debtor not performing their obligations under this deed then the whole of the debt and interest in accordance ... shall be immediately payable by the debtor," the deed of settlement read.



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