Company seeks $90K-plus judgment over fraud claims stemming from Harlem Furniture's sale to The RoomPlace

By Annie Cosby | May 8, 2014


A Winnetka advertising company is suing, claiming a furniture company and others defrauded it and have failed to pay a more than $90,000 judgment.

Nathan Partners Inc., individually and derivatively on behalf of Harlem Furniture LLC, filed a lawsuit May 2 in the Cook County Circuit Court against TRP Acquisition Inc., doing business as The RoomPlace, and Bruce Berman, alleging fraud.

According to the complaint, Berman agreed to the sale of Harlem Furniture in 2011 after defaulting on a 2008 loan from The Private Bank & Trust Company, and falsely told creditors, including Nathan Partners, the sale had been conducted pursuant to the Uniform Commercial Code.

The plaintiff, however, claims Berman stripped Harlem Furniture of its assets, including its inventory, and transferred them to The RoomPlace, which is also under his control, in order to defraud Harlem creditors and avoid paying debts.

The RoomPlace is accused of being liable as Harlem's successor for fraudulent intent, fraudulent transfer and civil conspiracy to defraud. The suit includes counts against Berman for fraudulent transfer, aiding and abetting fraudulent transfer, civil conspiracy to defraud and breach of fiduciary duty.

Nathan Partners, according to the suit, has already received a judgment against the defendants for more than $94,000 and claims that it has not yet been satisfied.

It is being represented in the case by attorneys William J. Factor, Sara E. Lorber and David P. Holtkamp of FactorLaw.

Cook County Circuit Court Case No. 2014L004862.

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

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