New Procedural Requirement Results in Dismissal of Termination of Parental Rights Appeal in Memphis, Tennessee: In re Catherine J.

Facts: Child was removed from the parents’ custody and determined to be dependent and neglected. Five months later, the Department of Children’s Services (DCS) petitioned to terminate Father’s parental rights. After a trial, the trial court entered a judgment terminating Father’s parental rights to Child. Father filed a notice of appeal. Notably, Father did not […]

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Civil Contempt Petition Revived Because of Multiple Errors in Memphis, TN: Parsons v. Parsons

Facts: Husband and Wife divorced in 2014. Nearly a year later, Wife petition for civil and criminal contempt. She alleged that Husband failed to pay the full amount of spousal support required by their marital dissolution agreement. After Wife’s counsel completed the direct examination of Wife, Husband’s counsel moved to dismiss on the grounds that […]

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No Relief from Default Judgment in Murfreesboro, TN Custody Dispute: In re I.G.

Facts: Mother and Father are the parents of Child. They entered an agreed parenting plan designating Mother as the primary residential parent and granting Father 74 days of parenting time. A few years later, Mother petitioned for an ex parte restraining order and modification of the parenting plan because Father had incurred criminal charges for […]

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Court Divided Over Statutory Interpretation in Greeneville, TN Termination of Parental Rights Case: In re K.J.G.

Facts: Mother and Stepfather filed a petition to terminate Father’s parental rights and adopt the child. After a trial, the trial court found clear and convincing evidence of grounds to terminate Father’s parental rights and that termination was in the child’s best interest. The trial court entered an order stating its conclusions and attached a […]

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After-The-Fact Order of Reference Leads to Reversal in Memphis Custody Dispute: Crafton v. Roberts

Facts: Mother and Father, the parents of two children, divorced in 2007. Father was designated the primary residential parent for the youngest child, and Mother was designated the primary residential parent for the oldest child. In 2010, Father petitioned to modify the parenting schedule. Mother counter-petitioned to change custody of the youngest child and to […]

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Conditioning Parenting Time on Actions of Non-Party Reversed in Memphis Divorce: Holdsworth v. Holdsworth

Facts: This 47-page (!!!) opinion begins with the following statement: “This is an appeal from an extremely contentious divorce.” The parties married in 1994 and had one child together. In July 2013, they were divorced. Among other things, the trial court found Husband dissipated marital assets by writing checks to his girlfriend totaling $15,633 and […]

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Marital Dissolution Agreement Withstands Claim of Duress in Clarksville Divorce: Owen v. Haas

Facts: Husband, an Army officer, and Wife, a schoolteacher, were divorced after Husband learned of Wife’s extramarital affair. Husband withheld the fact that he knew about the affair until the parties’ mediation. When Wife was confronted with evidence of her affair at the mediation, the parties had a private conversation. No agreement was reached during […]

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Nashville Child Support Reduction Reversed: Uria v. Uria

Facts: The parties divorced after five years of marriage. They have two children. After mediation, the parties filed an agreed parenting plan to the trial court that determined Father’s child support obligation to be $667 per month. Shortly thereafter, Mother filed a motion that resulted in the trial court ordering Father to appear at the […]

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Tennessee’s New Forms for Agreed Divorces

Effective today, the Tennessee Supreme Court has approved new forms that can be used for certain types of agreed divorces in courtrooms across the state. This is the result of an effort by the Court to make it easier for divorcing parties to use self-help for routine legal services. While that is certainly a noble […]

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