Awning company files for bankruptcy

By Diane Walker - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Unhappy customers of Novell Awning, are living their worst fear, today. The company has gone belly-up, before many of them could get their money or merchandise.

Thermo Press Corporation, Norvell Awning Company, filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy. Customers, who want to get paid, should attend a creditors meeting, in August. The meeting will explore, whether there "are" any assets.

For Richard Reynolds, it keeps creditors at bay. The prominent heir, to the Reynolds foil fortune, is claiming no assets. Richard Reynolds blames a bad economy for his business failure but others, who worked with him, say Reynolds used new customers' deposits to pay for materials and installation of back orders. They say his shell game, just exploded.

"I just couldn't stand working not knowing where my next paycheck was going to come from," said Lori Biggs, former office manager of Norvell Awning.

She says she was fired four times in two and a half months.

"You could always tell when money was getting tight. You were looking for somebody to be sent home. If you were sent home a couple of days, he doesn't have to pay you," she said.

Bankruptcy notices are just now, going out to creditors.  A woman in West Point got hers Saturday. She worries her money is gone, like many others, who paid hefty deposits but never got the awnings. We consulted an expert.

"Sometimes customers who put up deposits, might be in a better situation than other creditors who are just owned money for services or goods," said Attorney John Moore of Coates and Davenport.

Norvell Awning is no more. But, another company appears to be positioning itself to buy the bankrupt business. Meantime, any assets will be liquidated and creditors paid off.

"They might be able to sell the business, they might be able to sell assets of the business, like the customer list," said Moore.

Richard Reynolds isn't returning our calls. The legal expert we consulted for this story says, customers must file a proof of claim, and go to the creditors meeting. He says Reynolds is "not" personally liable, it's the corporation that filed for bankruptcy.

To stake your claim, the meeting is: August 11, at 11 a.m., at the federal building downtown, across from the National Theatre on 701 East Broad Street, the fourth floor.

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