Hospital claims woman defaulted on loan payments

By Kelly Holleran | Mar 20, 2013

A hospital system claims a doctor failed to properly comply with the terms of a loan and now owes the hospital more than $300,000.

Christus Health Southeast Texas, doing business as Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth, filed a lawsuit March 12 in Jefferson County District Court against Dr. Traci Vaughn.

In its complaint, Christus claims it lent Vaughn $563,619 to help her establish a medical practice. In exchange, Vaughn agreed to practice within a certain geographical area and to provide certain types of medical services, according to the complaint.

Initially, Vaughn complied with the terms of the loan and was able to receive loan forgiveness for a certain number of months. In turn, the amount of money she owed dropped to $337,462, the suit states.

In May 2011, Vaughn began a planned six-month leave of absence from her medical practice. During this time, Christus agreed to abate her loan repayment obligations until after her return, the complaint says.

However, when Vaughn returned to the job in January 2012, she failed to make the payments due under the loan. On April 2, Christus notified Vaughn that her loan was in default, it claims.

In its complaint, Christus alleges breach of contract against Vaughn.

In addition to the money it claims Vaughn owes it, Christus seeks interest at the maximum rate allowed by law, post-judgment interest, attorneys’ fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Larry J. Simmons and B. Eliot New of Germer Gertz in Beaumont will be representing it.

Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th District Court, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. B194-145

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