Opinion FlashNovember 6, 2002
Volume 8 Number 197
Following this index are summaries of each case, including its name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion.This Issue (IN THIS ORDER):
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Howard H. Vogel
RONALD L. DAVIS v. THE TENNESSEAN, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: Ronald L. Davis, Only, Tennessee, Pro se. Alfred H. Knight, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, The Tennessean, et al. Judge: COTTRELL First Paragraph: The plaintiff filed a libel action against a newspaper, The Tennessean, its publisher and its editor, alleging his reputation had been harmed by a sentence in an article which stated that he had shot a man, when, in fact, his co-defendant had killed the victim. The trial court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss, finding the plaintiff to be "libel proof" in this matter because he had been convicted of aiding and abetting in the murder and incarcerated for the remainder of his life for the crime, "render[ing] any reputation he may have had virtually valueless." We affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/davisronaldl.wpd
NORMAN HAMBY v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCA Attorneys: Stephen R. Leffler, Memphis, For Appellant, Norman Hamby Tanda R. Grisham, Memphis, For Appellee, State of Tennessee Judge: CRAWFORD First Paragraph: This is a premises liability case arising from Plaintiff's fall into a ventilation pit on the University of Tennessee at Memphis (referred to herein as UT) campus when an aluminum grate covering the opening collapsed while Plaintiff was standing on it. The Commissioner of Claims of the Western Division held that the accident was not foreseeable and that UT did not have actual or constructive notice of the dangerous condition of the grating over the pit. Plaintiff appeals. We reverse and remand. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/hamby.wpd
WILLIAM HAMER, et al. v. ROBERT C. HARRIS, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: Todd E. Panther, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Robert C. Harris. Ashley N. Arnold, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, William Hamer and June Hamer. Judge: LYLE First Paragraph: Homeowners sued a builder for defective construction. The trial court awarded damages for breach and attorney's fees under the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act. We reverse the award of attorney's fees based upon no proof of deceptive, misleading or unfair conduct by the builder. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/hamerw.wpd
HARPER-WITTBRODT AUTOMOTIVE GROUP, LLC v. SAM TEAGUE, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: J. Thomas Martin, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Sam Teague and Sam Teague Chrysler, Inc. Benjamin C. Regen, Dickson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Harper-Wittbrodt Automotive Group, LLC. Judge: FARMER First Paragraph: This is an appeal from an order of summary judgment enforcing an option to purchase clause in a lease for commercial property. The trial court awarded summary judgment to the plaintiff, finding it had exercised its option under the contract. We reverse summary judgment, finding a genuine issue of material fact as to the purchase price of the property. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/harperw.wpd
OSCAR LITTLE, et al. v. SAMUEL WATSON, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: John T. Maher, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Samuel Watson and Marguerite Watson. Edward Robertson, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Oscar Little and Helen Little. Judge: COTTRELL First Paragraph: Samuel and Marguerite Watson appeal the final judgment of the trial court which found that a transaction between the Watsons and the Littles involving the purchase of a house created a resulting trust. The trial court divested out of the Watsons and vested in the Littles all interest in the house after the Littles obtained new financing for the house and paid off the previous mortgage in the Watsons' name and repaid the down payment with interest. We affirm the decision of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/littleo.wpd
NATIONS RENT OF TENNESSEE, INC. v. MEL LANGE, et al. FORKLIFTS UNLIMITED, LLC, et al. v. DAVID Q. WRIGHT, et al. SOUTHERN WOOD TREATMENT CO., INC. v. DAVID Q. WRIGHT, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: John T. Blankenship, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellants, David Q. Wright and RLI Insurance Company. Ewing Sellers, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellee, Nations Rent of Tennessee, Inc. Robert P. Gritton, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellees, Forklifts Unlimited LLC and Forklifts Unlimited, Inc. Judge: LYLE First Paragraph: Vendors of rental equipment filed suit to collect unpaid invoices from the landowner after the contractor abandoned the job. The trial court granted recovery based upon the Mechanics' and Materialmen's Lien Statute and quantum meruit. We reverse for insufficient proof on the correct measure of damages. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/nations.wpd
DAN B. WILSON, JR. v. LAWRENCE H. RUBIN, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: W. Gary Blackburn, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Dan B. Wilson, Jr. Gail Vaughn Ashworth, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Lawrence H. Rubin and Sony/ATV Music Publishing Company, LLC. Judge: KOCH First Paragraph: This appeal involves the termination of an employee by a music publishing company after one of its songwriters complained that the employee had stalked and harassed her. The employee filed suit in the Chancery Court for Davidson County alleging gender and age discrimination in violation of the Tennessee Human Rights Act. The publishing company moved for a summary judgment asserting that it had a valid non-discriminatory ground for terminating the employee. The employee responded that the proffered non-discriminatory ground was pretextual. The trial court granted the summary judgment and dismissed the employee's complaint. On this appeal, the employee asserts that genuine material factual disputes regarding the publishing company's non-discriminatory reasons for terminating him should have prevented the trial court from granting the summary judgment. We agree and, therefore, vacate the order dismissing the employee's complaint. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/wilsond.wpd
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