Christina Stueve Hodges Jan. 3, 2013, 9:01am

St. Clair County Circuit Judge Vincent Lopinot on Dec. 20 granted a Cahokia check cashing company time to respond to an Illinois man’s proposed class action lawsuit.

Willie Hadley claims he cashed a check for $1,875 at defendant Maplewood Markets formerly known as Cahokia Mor for Less in August 2011. In turn for cashing the check, Cahokia Mor for Less charged Hadley a $38 check cashing fee, according to the complaint filed Oct. 10 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

Defendant Maplewood Markets on Dec. 17 requested it have until Jan. 18 to respond to the plaintiff’s complaint. The defendant had been ordered to respond to the plaintiff’s complaint by Dec. 19, according to the case file.

“Due to the ongoing settlement discussions, plaintiff’s counsel has consented to an additional 30 days for defendant to file an answer or otherwise plead,” the motion states.

Maplewood Markets contends that to deny additional time to respond to the plaintiff’s complaint would be unjust and would cause great hardship.

Hadley claimed Illinois state law does not allow for check cashing fees of more than 50 cents or 1 percent of the face value of the check.

Cahokia Mor for Less charged him more than was statutorily allowed, and Cahokia Mor for Less did the same thing to numerous other Illinois residents, the complaint says.

Hadley is requesting certification of the case as a class action lawsuit and is seeking more than $50,000, attorneys’ fees and other relief the court deems just.

He will be represented by Peter J. Maag of Maag Law Firm in Wood River.

Ryan Mahoney of The Cates Law Firm in Swansea represents the defense.

Maag filed a similar suit against Schwegel’s Market in Alton in August, claiming a woman was unfairly charged 75 cents when she wrote a check for $68.80.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 12-L-534.

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