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Centrix hearing on expedited discovery motion is today
DENVER, Colo. (2/13/08)--A non-evidentiary hearing in the subprime auto lender Centrix Financial bankruptcy case will be held today about a motion asking the judge to reconsider her order granting expedited discovery in the case. The telephone conference hearing before Judge Elizabeth E. Brown of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Colorado is set to begin at 1:30 p.m. MST and will likely involve scheduling further meetings. A debtors committee, representing the several Centrix-affiliated companies, filed an objection Monday to a motion filed Friday by the Ad Hoc Committee of Credit Unions, a group of creditors. On March 27, 2007, the Ad Hoc Committee of Credit Unions filed a motion for administrative expenses for making a substantial contribution in the cases. The debtors committee objected but also began settlement negotiations with the Ad Hoc Committee to try to avoid more litigation expenses, according to the debtors committee filing. During the negotiations, which continued throughout 2007, the debtors committee said it believed the administration matters could also be resolved consensually. It was surprised when the Ad Hoc Committee contested the contribution motion but began to prepare for a hearing and drafted discovery requests. The Ad Hoc Committee said it couldn't compile the information requested within 14 days and asked the judge to reconsider her expedited-discovery order. The committees were formed because there were so many debtor companies and so many credit unions represented as creditors in the bankruptcy case. In another development, a letter to the court from the regional director of the Employee Benefits Security Administration, withdrew the U.S. Department of Labor's claims related to Centrix Financial's 401(k) plan. The Secretary of Labor had filed a proof of claim on Jan. 8, 2007, to protect the interests in the plan and any participants who incurred losses, according to court documents. On July 11, 2007, the fiduciaries of the company's plan "restored all losses that may have been incurred by participants and paid the full amount" of the claim, the letter, which was received by the court Feb. 6. Meanwhile, trade press have reported that the insurer for Centrix Financial, Lyndon Property Insurance, has sued about three dozen credit unions alleging they worked with Centrix to commit insurance fraud by not reporting all Default Protection Insurance (DPI) claims. The credit unions, reported Credit Union Journal Monday, have asked the bankruptcy judge for a jury trial.


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