Carol Ostrow Mar. 12, 2015, 10:00am

An area media buying company is suing an advertising cooperative of Chicagoland restaurant franchise owners that it asserts has failed to pay a more than $220,000 bill.

Prime Time Marketing LLC filed suit Feb. 17 in Cook County Circuit Court against the Chicagoland Wingstop Advertising Association, alleging unjust enrichment in its refusal to pay funds owed.

When Prime Time Marketing (PTM), which provides clients with media planning, buying and analysis, engaged Wingstop as a client in May 2012, the suit says the plaintiff agreed to invoice Wingstop monthly based on a pre-approved budget based on average expenditures, rather than exact figures. This billing system is referred to as “level-billing.”

PTM says it invoiced Wingstop and was paid accordingly from June 2012 until May 2013. Wingstop, according to the suit, approved a media budget for the next fiscal year and agreed to continue level-billing with PTM.

After it switched from a fiscal-year cycle to a calendar-year cycle in January 2014, Wingstop approved PTM’s new proposed budget, but then canceled the parties' agreement in July when expenses exceeded the budget due to its sponsorship of the World Cup.

Maintaining that it had already purchased more than $900,000 worth of media on Wingstop’s behalf, PTM seeks to recover at least $227,672.30, plus interest, attorneys’ fees and costs. PTM is represented by David Morrison and Meredith Kirshenbaum of Goldberg Kohn in Chicago.

Cook County Circuit Court, Case No. 2015L001617.

This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note that a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt and represents only one side of the story.

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