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Arkansas Ties to Television Show Hits Lending Snag

(MAGNOLIA)  A couple with deep Arkansas ties now based in Los Angeles and who created television shows Designing Women and Evening Shade are being sued by a Magnolia lender over the remainder of a 20-year-old bank promissory note that was never fully repaid.

A promissory note is similar to a traditional bank loan but often contains less extensive language and clauses.

Farmers Bank & Trust is seeking civil action against Harry Thomason and Linda Bloodworth-Thomason over the last bits of a $175,000 loan the bank issued to the couple on Nov. 15, 1999, that initially required repayment of the principal by May 15, 2000. The civil suit was filed May 29th in the Columbia County Circuit Clerk’s office.

Thomason is a native of Hampton and formerly resided in Little Rock. His spouse is a native of Poplar Bluff, Missouri and the couple has up to the end of the month to respond.

The short-term note was lent for business expenses to go toward “working capital” for the couple’s Mozark Productions company in California.

The bank’s complaint asserts that the defendants still owe a total of $3,289, plus expenses, associated with the 1999 loan.

“Despite demand, the defendants have failed to pay the amounts due and owing under the note and are in default the terms of the note,” said the complaint filed on behalf of the bank by Little Rock attorney James L. Phillips.

As of May 21, the bank claims a sum of $2,854.96 is still owed on the principal amount and interest is due in the amount of $734.19.

The complaint also said that interest on the unpaid principal is accruing at a rate of 66 cents per day, as of May 22. The bank also claims it is entitled to attorney’s fees — requested only as the “maximum” amount allowed by the law — under Arkansas code.

Farmers Bank & Trust has already issued numerous extensions to the initially agreed-upon sum, including note modifications in December 2000, May 2001, January 2002, November 2009, May 2010, and November 2010.

The note was also refinanced from 9.25% to 8.5% interest over the life of the loan, according to document filings.

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