Ann Maher Aug. 13, 2014, 4:54pm

A proposed Madison County class action suit that has been presided over by four judges in about four months awaits decision on a defense motion to compel arbitration.

One Main Financial and CitiFinancial argue that an arbitration agreement between them and Patrick and Fannie Mae Kaveny in a credit transaction encompasses the issue at dispute in the couple’s suit.

The Kavenys, who reside in Collinsville, sued in April claiming the defendants failed to release the security interest in their vehicle in the required amount of time after they had paid off the automobile.

“The Arbitration Agreement contains a provision that explicitly prohibits the Kavenys from serving as class representatives and from participating in a putative class action related to the Security Agreement,” the motion to compel arbitration states.

The case was originally assigned to Circuit Judge Dennis Ruth.

The plaintiffs, represented by Shari Murphy of Wood River, moved to substitute Ruth. The case then went to Circuit Judge Barbara Crowder, whereupon the defendants, represented by Louis Bonacorsi of BryanCave in St. Louis, moved for substitution.

In an order signed July 23, Chief Judge Dave Hylla reassigned the case to Associate Judge Donald Flack, indicating that it had previously been assigned to Circuit Judge Andreas Matoesian.

Also pending in the case is a defense motion for protective order staying discovery and plaintiffs’ response to the motion to compel arbitration.

In their suit, Kavenys allege they paid off their vehicle on Feb. 11. In turn, One Main Financial and CitiFinancial should have released the security interest in the Kavenys’ vehicle within 21 days, according to the complaint. However, the defendants failed to release the security interest in the required amount of time, the suit states.

“As a direct and proximate result of the foregoing, the plaintiffs have been damaged in the amount of $150, plus costs and fees in obtaining said title,” the complaint says.

The Kavenys say they are not alone in their failure to receive the title and are asking the court to declare the complaint as a class action complaint.

They also are seeking damages of more than $50,000, plus attorneys’ fees and other relief the court deems just.

Madison County Circuit Court case number 14-L-531.


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