Health Care & Insurance  January 5, 2024

Columbine responds, denies allegations in North Shore Manor lawsuit

LOVELAND — After a one-week reprieve brought about because of the COVID-caused isolation of Columbine Management Services Inc. attorney John O’Brien, Columbine, its owner Robert Wilson and other related entities filed a 25-page response to a lawsuit filed by nursing home North Shore Manor Inc. in October and amended in November.

The lawsuit is a continuation of a legal dispute among the owners of the nursing home located at 1364 W. 29th St. in Loveland. Those owners include the successors of the founders of the nursing home and Wilson, who owns 15% and also had operational control of the facility until dismissed from that role in early 2023.

The lawsuit, as previously reported, included numerous and scathing allegations of “intentional and deliberate acts of self-dealing, theft and deception by J. Robert Wilson, … which acts were aided and abetted by his related entities.” It accused Wilson of siphoning profits off North Shore and moving those profits into entities he controlled or directly to himself.

Among the specific charges were the use of Columbine-controlled vendors to provide services and materials to North Shore at rates well in excess of market, a charge that the non-Wilson owners claim is supported by research of a third-party operations evaluator.

The lawsuit claimed that when Wilson considered selling all of his Columbine properties, including his North Shore shares, he offered $12 million for the shares he didn’t own, but discounted that amount to $7.3 million to compensate himself for loans he had advanced to the organization, “loans not memorialized in any loan agreement,” the lawsuit claimed.

Wilson in his response filed Friday addresses almost none of those allegations other than several pages to deny them. Instead, the thrust of Friday’s response was to file a counterclaim.

He alleges through his attorney that North Shore Manor attempted “to extort $10,000,000 from Bob …” The counterclaim uses just Wilson’s first name to identify him.

The counterclaim alleges that Wilson had authorization as managing partner of the entity to take out bank loans and to encumber the property. He said that because he personally guaranteed — along with the guaranty of North Shore — one of the bank loans, he formed a company called Wapello Holdings LLC to purchase the note and avoid default, but the guaranty from North Shore was assigned to him, which entitles him to collect.

He also alleged, as he has in the past, that North Shore breached the management agreement it had with Columbine Management Services Inc. and owes nearly a half million dollars in unpaid bills to Columbine vendors, along with $510,000 that Wilson lent to North Shore to shore up its finances.

North Shore in its November amended filing said that the nursing home operation needs additional information from Wilson-related entities to understand its true financial condition. Throughout the now-closed bankruptcy proceeding, the parties sparred over access to records with North Shore saying it needed more and Columbine saying it had already provided them or couldn’t provide them because of entanglements with the other Columbine properties that Wilson controls.

“In short, it is impossible to understand the full scope and nature of these transactions without full and complete access to Wilson’s, Columbine’s and the John Doe defendants’ books and records,” the lawsuit claimed.

On Dec. 13, District Court Judge C. Michelle Brinegar ordered Wilson and Columbine to show cause why the books and records “should not be taken from the defendants and delivered into the possession … of North Shore Manor.” A “show cause” proceeding is scheduled for Jan. 18. The judge warned that “If you fail to appear or fail to file a written undertaking, the plaintiff may apply to the court for an order requiring the sheriff to take immediate possession of the personal property…”

The case is North Shore Manor Inc. v. J. Robert Wilson, Columbine Management Services Inc. Wapello Holdings LLC and John Does I-X, case number 2023cv30883, filed Oct. 27, 2023, in Larimer County District Court.

LOVELAND — After a one-week reprieve brought about because of the COVID-caused isolation of Columbine Management Services Inc. attorney John O’Brien, Columbine, its owner Robert Wilson and other related entities filed a 25-page response to a lawsuit filed by nursing home North Shore Manor Inc. in October and amended in November.

The lawsuit is a continuation of a legal dispute among the owners of the nursing home located at 1364 W. 29th St. in Loveland. Those owners include the successors of the founders of the nursing home and Wilson, who owns 15% and also had operational control of the facility until…

Ken Amundson
Ken Amundson is managing editor of BizWest. He has lived in Loveland and reported on issues in the region since 1987. Prior to Colorado, he reported and edited for news organizations in Minnesota and Iowa. He's a parent of two and grandparent of four, all of whom make their homes on the Front Range. A news junkie at heart, he also enjoys competitive sports, especially the Rapids.
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