IN RE ESTATE OF PATRICK TAKASHI DAVIS - Articles

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Posted by: Amelia Ferrell Knisely on Mar 31, 2016

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

David J. Callahan, III, John Richard Manson, and Alexander Stephen Fasching, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Crystal Wey.

Attorneys 2:

James G. King, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Bryant Takashi Davis, and Peggy Duncan Mathes, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Estate of Patrick Takashi Davis.

Judge(s): ARMSTRONG

Appellant appeals the trial court’s determination that Appellee, who was born in 1992, is an heir-at-law of the Decedent, who died intestate. Appellant argues that the Appellee, as a child born out of wedlock, was required to file a claim against decedent’s estate within the statutory period in order to inherit. However, the Decedent is listed on Appellee’s birth certificate. Under Tennessee Code Annotated Section 68-3-305(b) (1992), in order for his name to be listed on Appellee’s birth certificate, the decedent would have signed an “affidavit . . . acknowledging paternity.” With the enactment, in 1994, of Tennessee Code Annotated Section 27-7-113, such “affidavits” were deemed “voluntary acknowledgment[s] of paternity,” which constitute a “legal finding of paternity.” It is undisputed that the decedent’s estate consists only of real property. Because the inclusion of decedent’s name on Appellee’s birth certificate evinces the execution of a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity that constitutes a legal finding of paternity, Appellee’s portion of the estate vested, upon decedent’s death, in Appellee pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated Section 31-2-103 and the laws of intestate succession, Tennessee Code Annotated Section 31-2-104. Affirmed and remanded.