John Anderson and Paula Sturgeon. Photo Dave Noonan / The Chronicle. 30/03/12
John Anderson and Paula Sturgeon. Photo Dave Noonan / The Chronicle. 30/03/12

Sons sue late dad’s de facto for $750k

The sons of late publican John Anderson are suing the businessman's former de facto and business partner for more than three quarters of a million dollars.

Lachlan and Robert Anderson, as representatives of John Anderson's estate, have filed two claims in the Toowoomba District Court against Paula Sturgeon.

Neither the brothers, through their lawyer, nor Ms Sturgeon wished to comment when contacted.

In the first claim, lodged in January, the Anderson brothers are seeking $152,692.95 and almost $50,000 in interest, plus costs, over a January 2015 deal between their father and Ms Sturgeon.

Paula Sturgeon and John Anderson in 2011. Photo Nev Madsen
Paula Sturgeon and John Anderson in 2011. Photo Nev Madsen

The claim states Ms Sturgeon agreed to repay John Anderson the sum of $130,000, which was allegedly loaned to her to assist with the development of a house and duplex at 21 North St, Toowoomba.

The claim further states that on or about March 10, 2015, their father loaned Ms Sturgeon the further sums of $18,348.95 and $4344 to assist with building costs associated with the project, "which sums (Ms Sturgeon) also agreed to repay to (John Anderson)".

The brothers are claiming that "in breach of the agreements" and despite a demand for the money having been made, " (Ms Sturgeon) has failed, refused and/or neglected to repay the said sums".

 

 

A second claim, lodged in February, relates to the purchase of a set of units at 43 Hill St, Toowoomba.

The brothers claim there was a verbal agreement between their father and Ms Sturgeon, which saw him loan either her or her property development and management company Phiser (PS) Pty Ltd $435,977.63 to complete a contract to purchase the Hill St property.

The money was loaned on March 26, 2015, the claim said.

The claim says it was a term of the agreement that either Ms Sturgeon or her company would repay the sum after receiving funds from a finance broker on April 3, 2015.

"In breach of the agreement, (Ms Sturgeon) and/or (Phiser (PS) Pty Ltd) failed, refused and/or neglected to pay the said sum to (John Anderson) … on or about April 3, 2015, or at all," the claim said.

The brothers are also chasing $139,552.59 in interest, as well as costs.

The late John Anderson inside the Norville Hotel in 2011. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle
The late John Anderson inside the Norville Hotel in 2011. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle

John Anderson was a well-known publican, and a stalwart of Toowoomba's night-life and music scene.

He ran the Norville, the Settler's Inn, and Delacy's Hotel for several decades until the latter two closed late in 2018.

The Norville closed in early 2020, but has since reopened under new management.

Before working in hospitality, Mr Anderson was a regional manager for the Endeavour Foundation and helped improve the lives of people with disabilities.

 

Originally published as Sons sue late dad's de facto for $750k


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