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Posted by: Landry Butler on Nov 29, 2017

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

John P. Konvalinka, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellants, Sonya Schnur, Roswell Schnur, and Lisa Daniela Schnur.

Attorneys 2:

Bill W. Pemerton, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellee, Megan C. England.

Judge(s): SUSANO

Megan England filed a petition for a restraining order, protective order and injunctive relief against Sonya Schnur, Roswell Schnur, and Lisa Schnur, alleging, among other things, that the respondents had taken actions that caused her to fear for her safety. The trial court granted her a temporary restraining order. Three days later, respondents filed motions to dismiss under Tenn. R. Civ. P. 12.02(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Respondents subsequently filed two affidavits in support of the motions. Shortly thereafter, petitioner filed a notice of voluntary nonsuit asking for dismissal of her petition without prejudice. Respondents opposed the dismissal unless it was entered with prejudice. Contrary to the respondents’ request, the court dismissed the action without prejudice. We hold that the trial court did not consider matters outside the pleadings in making its decision. As a consequence, the motion of the respondents was not converted into a motion for summary judgment. In the alternative, even if the conversion occurred, the trial court had discretion to grant the petitioner’s request without prejudice under the authority of Stewart v. Univ. of Tenn., 519 S.W.2d 591, 593 (Tenn. 1974). The trial court did not abuse its discretion in declining to make its dismissal with prejudice. Accordingly, we affirm.