TN Court of Appeals

IN RE BRAYLIN D.

Mother, who had been designated as the primary residential parent of her eight-year-old child, appeals an order changing the designation to the child’s Father, contending that the material change of circumstances since the entry of the original parenting plan, as found by the trial court, was not sufficient to justify the modification of custody.

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Attorney 1: 

Gregory D. Smith, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Ashley U.

Attorney 2: 

Venus Niner, Franklin, Tennessee, for the appellee, Bobby D.

Judge: 
DINKINS

IN RE: COLTON R.

This is a termination of parental rights case. Mother and Stepfather filed a petition to terminate the parental rights of Father to the child. The trial court found that the grounds of (1) abandonment for willful failure to visit as defined by Tennessee Code Annotated section 36-1-102(1)(A)(i), (2) abandonment for willful failure to visit by an incarcerated parent as defined by Tennessee Code Annotated section 36-1-102(1)(A)(iv), and (3) abandonment based on conduct demonstrating a wanton disregard for the welfare of the child had been proven by clear and convincing evidence.

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Attorney 1: 

Nicholas Black, Maryville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Mark R.

Attorney 2: 

David K. Calfee, Cleveland, Tennessee, for the appellees, Cheryl W. and Michael W.

Judge: 
STAFFORD

SAMUEL C. CLEMMONS, ET AL. v. JOHNNY NESMITH

In this accelerated interlocutory appeal, Appellants appeal from separate orders denying two motions for recusal filed in this case. After thoroughly reviewing the record on appeal, we affirm the decision of the trial court to deny the recusal motions.

Attorney 1: 

Joshua David Wilson, Brentwood, Tennessee, and Brandy Murphy Lee, Birmingham, Alabama, for the appellants, Samuel C. Clemmons, and Shannon N. Clemmons.

Attorney 2: 

Virginia Lee Story, Franklin, Tennessee and Kathryn Lynn Yarbrough, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Johnny Nesmith.

Judge: 
STAFFORD

IN RE: NEVEAH W.

This is the second appeal in this case involving a long-running battle between foster parents and the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services (“DCS”). In 2014, DCS removed the three-year-old child at issue from her foster home of three years. In the context of this already pending termination and adoption proceeding, the chancery court held an evidentiary hearing and determined that there was insufficient evidence to justify removal and that DCS had taken steps adverse to the child’s best interest. The chancery court ordered DCS to return the child to her foster home.

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Attorney 1: 

William Ray Glasgow, Memphis, Tennessee, Guardian ad Litem for the Appellant, Neveah W.

Attorney 2: 

Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter, Andrée S. Blumstein, Solicitor General, and Alexander S. Rieger, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.

Laura Diane Rogers, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Appellees, Jason W. and Marie W.

Judge: 
GIBSON

BULL MARKET, INC. v. ADEL ELRAFEI

A purchaser of property entered into an installment contract and signed a promissory note specifying the day on which monthly payments were to be made. The purchaser began making payments on different days of the months and the seller accepted these payments over a course of years. Over seven years after the contract was executed, the seller sought to declare the contract null and void because the purchaser failed to tender his payment on the day specified in the note. The trial court awarded the seller relief and granted it possession of the property.

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Attorney 1: 

Mark J. Grai, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Adel Elrafei.

Attorney 2: 

Ross E. Webster, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellee, Bull Market, Inc.

Judge: 
BENNETT

JOSEPH SKERNIVITZ v. STATE OF TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF SAFETY AND HOMELAND SECURITY

In this drug forfeiture case, we have concluded that the trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction because the property owner failed to filed a petition for judicial review within the sixty-day time period required under Tenn. Code Ann. § 4-5-322(b). We, therefore, vacate the trial court’s decision.

Attorney 1: 

Travis N. Meeks, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Joseph Skernivitz.

Attorney 2: 

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter; Andrée Blumstein, Solicitor General; and Brooke K. Schiferle, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security.

Judge: 
BENNETT

240 POPLAR AVENUE GENERAL PARTNERSHIP V. CHERYL GRAY

This is a breach of contract action in which the lessor filed suit against the lessee for non-payment of rent, utilities, and repairs pursuant to the terms of a lease agreement for two units in a commercial building. Following a hearing, the trial court entered a judgment in favor of lessor. The lessee appeals. We affirm.

Attorney 1: 

Cheryl Gray, Lakeland, Tennessee, pro se.

Attorney 2: 

Roger A. Stone, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellee, 240 Poplar Avenue General Partnership.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY

SIMINDER KAUR v. VANEET SINGH

This is an interlocutory appeal limited to the issue of whether the orders of an Indian court regarding matters pending in India is entitled to full faith and credit, such that this state’s trial court lacks jurisdiction over custody of the minor child pursuant to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act. The mother, an Indian citizen but permanent resident of the United States, filed an action in India seeking the return of her minor son. She contends that her son, a citizen of the United States, is being detained illegally in India by her husband and his family.

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Attorney 1: 

Aubrey L. Brown, Jr. and Leigh-Taylor White, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Vaneet Singh.

Attorney 2: 

Melinda Plass Jewell and Sarah Carter, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellee, Siminder Kaur.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY

JAMES R. HAYNES, III, ET AL. v. LESLIE E. LUNSFORD, ET AL.

Purchasers of real estate brought suit against the seller as well as the real estate agent and agency that assisted the buyers, alleging, inter alia, fraudulent misrepresentation, breach of duty to disclose adverse facts related to the purchased property, and violations of the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act. The buyers argued that the defendants misrepresented the age and history of the home and did not disclose that it had a mold problem. Upon motion for summary judgment, the agent and the agency were dismissed as defendants.

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Attorney 1: 

Alex R. Hirschfield, Birmingham, Alabama, and Scott Hall, Sevierville, Tennessee, for the appellants, James R. Haynes, III, and Sharon Hirschfield.

Attorney 2: 

Jon G. Roach and Courtney E. Read, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Lynn Chalache and Four Seasons Realty, Inc.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY

DANNY HALE V. STATE OF TENNESSEE

This appeal involves a suit filed in the Tennessee Claims Commission against the State of Tennessee for the wrongful death of Tammy Hale. The claimant, Ms. Hale’s father, titled his cause of action as one for “negligent care, custody, and control of persons” pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 9-8-307(a)(1)(E). The claimant alleged that the State was responsible for the actions of an inmate whose release was not conditioned upon participation in community supervision for life as required by section 39-13-524.

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Attorney 1: 

Michael E. Richardson, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Danny Hale.

Attorney 2: 

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter; Andree S. Blumstein, Solicitor General; and Eric A. Fuller, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: 
MCCLARTY