TN Court of Appeals

CARRIE COGGINS ET AL. v. HOLSTON VALLEY MEDICAL CENTER

On August 6, 2011, Carrie Coggins and her husband Joel R. Coggins (Plaintiffs) visited a patient at Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center (Hospital). While there, Mrs. Coggins tripped and fell, sustaining serious injuries. Plaintiffs filed suit and alleged that Mrs. Coggins tripped over a feeding tube that, according to Plaintiffs, had been negligently left near her friend’s bed in such a way as to create a dangerous condition. Before they filed suit, Plaintiffs served Hospital with pre-suit notice of their intent to file. See Tenn. Code Ann. § 29-26-121 (2012).

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Attorney 1: 

T. Martin Browder, Jr. and R. Wayne Culbertson, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellants, Carrie Coggins and Joel R. Coggins.

Attorney 2: 

Andrew T. Wampler and Russell W. Adkins, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellee, Wellmont Health System dba Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center.

Judge: 
SUSANO

KYLE BEVERLY, ET. AL. v. HARDEE’S FOOD SYSTEMS, LLC

This is a premises liability case in which the plaintiffs filed suit against the defendant, alleging that Kyle Beverly slipped and fell on the floor after entering the defendant’s dining establishment. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, asserting that Kyle Beverly was comparatively negligent and that the plaintiffs could not prove that its employees had notice of the dangerous condition prior to the fall.

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Attorney 1: 

John D. Agee and Amanda I. Lowe, Clinton, Tennessee, for the appellants, Kyle S. Beverly and Mary Helen Beverly.

Attorney 2: 

Kenneth W. Ward, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Hardee’s Food Systems, LLC d/b/a Hardee’s, a foreign corporation.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY

IN RE AISHA R., ET. AL.

This is a termination of parental rights case in which the Tennessee Department of Children‟s Services filed a petition to terminate the parental rights of Christee R. and Matthew R. to two of their minor children. Following a bench trial, the trial court found that clear and convincing evidence existed to support the termination of each parent‟s parental rights on the statutory grounds of persistence of conditions and mental incompetence and that termination of their rights was in the best interest of the children. The parents appeal. We affirm the decision of the trial court.

Attorney 1: 

Cara C. Welsh, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Christee R.

Attorney 2: 

Greta Locklear, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Matthew R.

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter, and Mary Byrd Ferrara, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, State of Tennessee, Department of Children‟s Services.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY

FREDRICO A. DIXON, III v. PATRICIA GRISSOM

The dispute central to this interlocutory appeal involves a failed real estate transaction and alleged breach of a real estate agent‘s fiduciary duty to her client. The plaintiff buyer entered into an agreement to purchase improved real property from the seller but failed to obtain financing to complete the purchase. In a previous action brought by the seller against the buyer, the trial court found that the buyer‘s attempted termination of the contract was ineffective and that he therefore breached the contract. On appeal, this Court affirmed that judgment in favor of the seller.

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Attorney 1: 

Jon G. Roach and Brian R. Bibb, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Patricia Grissom.

Attorney 2: 

James B. Johnson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Fredrico A. Dixon, III.

Judge: 
FRIERSON

IN RE WILLIAM B.

In this termination of parental rights case, the father appeals the trial court’s termination of his parental rights to his son on the grounds of wanton disregard for the welfare of the child prior to father’s incarceration. The father also asserts the court erred in finding that termination was in the child’s best interest. We find that clear and convincing evidence supports the decision of the trial court and affirm the judgment in all respects.

Attorney 1: 

Brandon S. Griffin, Sparta, Tennessee, for the appellant, Donnie Wayne B.

Attorney 2: 

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter, and Mary Byrd Ferrara, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.

Sheila L. O’Regan, Granville, Tennessee, Guardian Ad Litem.

Judge: 
BENNETT

IN RE: KALOB S., ET AL.

This case involves the termination of the parental rights of a biological father to his seven children. Appellant contends that the trial court erred in terminating his parental rights. Because the grounds for termination are met by clear and convincing evidence, and there is also clear and convincing evidence that termination is in the best interest of the minor children at issue, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Attorney 1: 

David Christopher Veazey, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Chad S.

Attorney 2: 

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter, and Paul Jordan Scott, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Tennessee Department of Children‟s Services.

John Allen Brooks, Guardian Ad Litem.

Judge: 
GIBSON

RICHARD LEE HIBBENS v. ASHLEY ELIZABETH RUE

This appeal involves an award of retroactive child support. The child‘s father is in the military and was deployed overseas during part of the relevant time period. The trial court initially set the child support obligation based on the number of days the father would have had with the child pursuant to the parties‘ mediated agreement, regardless of the fact that he did not exercise all of that time due to his deployment.

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Attorney 1: 

Randy Sellers, Cleveland, Tennessee, for the appellant, Richard Lee Hibbens.

Attorney 2: 

Philip M. Jacobs, Cleveland, Tennessee, for the appellee, Ashley Elizabeth Rue.

Judge: 
GIBSON

JERRY BUNDREN v. THELMA BUNDREN, ET AL.

Thelma Bundren and George David Bundren (“Defendants”) appeal the order of the Circuit Court for Claiborne County (“the Trial Court”) finding and holding, inter alia, that the survey prepared by Comparoni & Associates establishes the boundary lines between real properties owned by Defendants and real property owned by Jerry Bundren (“Plaintiff”). We find and hold that the evidence does not preponderate against the Trial Court‟s findings, and we affirm.

Attorney 1: 

George David Bundren, Tazewell, Tennessee, and Thelma Bundren, Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Pro se appellants.

Attorney 2: 
Lindsey C. Cadle, Tazewell, Tennessee, for the appellee, Jerry Bundren
Judge: 
SWINEY

IN RE BRIDGESTONE/FIRESTONE, ET AL.

Appellants appeal the dismissal of their products liability cases. The trial court concluded that the doctrine of collateral estoppel applied to a prior forum non conveniens dismissal. The trial court reasoned that, at the time of the prior forum non conveniens dismissal, Appellant should have foreseen that the foreign forum would be unavailable to them and that issue should have been raised in previous proceedings. Because we find that an exception to the application of collateral estoppel applies to these cases, we reverse.

Attorney 1: 

A. Scott Ross, Nashville, Tennessee, Gregory G. Garre, and Katherine I. Twomey, Washington, DC, for the appellee, Bridgestone/Firestone.

Attorney 2: 

Stephen A. Marcum, Huntsville, Tennessee, Gregory G. Garre, and Katherine I.Twomey, Washington, DC, for the appellee, Ford Motor Co.

Judge: 
MCBRAYER

SOUTHERN TRUST INSURANCE COMPANY v. MATTHEW PHILLIPS

This appeal involves the interpretation of an insurance policy in order to determine whether the policy provided coverage for damage caused by arson. The insurer and the insured filed cross-motions for partial summary judgment on this issue. The trial court found the policy ambiguous and construed it in favor of coverage, holding that arson was covered under the policy. Accordingly, the trial court granted the motion for partial summary judgment filed by the insured and denied the motion for partial summary judgment filed by the insurer. The insurer appeals. We affirm.

Attorney 1: 

Terrill Lee Adkins and Amy Victoria Peters, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Southern Trust Insurance Company.

Attorney 2: 

James Brandon McWherter, Franklin, Tennessee, and Clinton H. Scott, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Matthew Phillips.

Judge: 
GIBSON