Trump National Doral Miami golf resort has been ordered to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to a small paint company after The Donald stiffed them for paint and other materials for renovations. A Florida state appeals court upheld an earlier ruling by a circuit court which Trump had appealed and now he will find himself paying out far more than if he had just paid the original bill.
Circuit Court Judge Jorge Cueto awarded the $32,535.87 Trump owed to The Paint Spot as well as attorney fees in July 2016. Because the law firm, Taylor Espino Vega & Touron, had taken the case on a contingency basis, a 75 percent fee was added by the court on top of the time billed by Daniel Vega, the lawyer who handled the case. The total Trump was ordered to pay at that time was $282,949.91.
But trump being Trump, he would rather pay his attorneys to fight the case in court than just pay people what he owes them. So he appealed the decision and claimed they had made a technical error on the paperwork, so he shouldn’t have to pay. Florida’s Third District Court of Appeals called bullshit on Wednesday, ruling “Trump failed to establish that it was adversely affected by the error.”
In the decision, the court also pointed to a segment of testimony from Jamie Gram, the construction manager with contractor Straticon.
“[T]he decision not to pay [Paint Spot] had nothing to do with a defective Notice to Owner,” Gram said, according to the decision. “They weren’t paid because Mr. Trump had already paid [subcontractor] M&P a decent amount of money of the contract … and there was still a lot of work that needed to be completed, so we used the money, M&P’s remaining balance, plus additional funds to pay to get the work done.”
Vega said on Thursday that the appeals court will most likely add on legal fees just like the lower court did, multiplying the total by 1.75. This means that Trump will end up paying almost $500,000 because he refused to cough up the $32,000 he originally owed. Admittedly, I suck at math. But this doesn’t look like that great of a deal to me. Just saying.
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