Home Divorce Lawyer Utah Grandmother Cannot Get Custody Away from Mother’s Cousin

Utah Grandmother Cannot Get Custody Away from Mother’s Cousin


Tennessee youngster custody case abstract on grandparent custody.

In re Cassi J.

The kid on this Hamilton County, Tennessee, case was born in 2010.  Till 2012, she lived together with her maternal grandmother in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  When the grandmother moved to Utah in 2012, the lady and her mom remained in Tennessee.  In addition they moved to Utah in 2014 and resided with the grandmother.  However after about two years, the connection was strained, and the  mom and daughter moved to their very own condominium in 2017.

In 2018, the mom contacted her cousin in Tennessee.  Because of monetary difficulties, they agreed that the lady would transfer in with the cousin till the mom might get again on her ft and return to Tennessee.  The mom gave the cousin an influence of legal professional to provide her authorized authority to behave on behalf of the mom.

In 2018, the cousin filed a petition for momentary custody in order that she might enroll the lady in class.  The court docket granted this petition after asking the mom to ship a letter to the court docket acknowledging the cousin’s momentary custody.

When the grandmother caught wind of this, she filed a petition with the Tennessee juvenile court docket looking for custody, on the grounds that the kid was uncared for.  She requested that the kid be allowed to stay together with her in Utah.  She additionally retained a lawyer in Utah who filed a petition that the Tennessee court docket lacked jurisdiction, since Utah was the house state underneath the Uniform Youngster Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA).

The grandmother then filed a movement within the Tennessee juvenile court docket to dismiss the cousin’s momentary custody petition.  The case was heard by a Justice of the Peace, who held a phone convention with the decide in Utah.   The Justice of the Peace denied the grandmother’s petition, and held that custody would stay with the cousin.

The grandmother filed a movement for rehearing, which was heard in 2019 by Juvenile Courtroom Decide Robert D. Philyaw.  On the listening to, the grandmother admitted that she by no means believed that the kid was in any hazard, and that the cousin was correctly caring for the kid.  There was proof that the grandmother was allowed to go to the kid in Tennessee and have phone calls.  The mom and cousin, nonetheless, didn’t enable visitation in Utah, since they didn’t belief the grandmother to return the kid to Tennessee.  The mom additionally testified that she deliberate to return to Tennessee simply as quickly as her Utah lease expired.

Decide Philyaw affirmed the Justice of the Peace’s order, and continued custody with the cousin.  The grandmother then appealed to the Tennessee Courtroom of Appeals, performing with out an legal professional.

The appeals court docket first famous {that a} professional se litigant usually are not excused from complying with the foundations, regardless that the court docket ought to keep in mind that they haven’t any authorized coaching.

On this case, the grandmother’s temporary didn’t adjust to the relevant guidelines.  Most significantly, her temporary didn’t make reference to the document and cite authority in help of her arguments.  The appeals court docket famous that it has no obligation to “confirm unsupported allegations” or to “analysis and assemble the get together’s argument.”  Nonetheless, the court docket used its discretion to try the deserves of the grandmother’s case.

It first famous that, regardless that the kid had resided with the grandmother for 4 of her six years, most of that point additionally included the mom within the residence.  It additionally reviewed the proof of the mom’s alleged unfitness, and concluded that the grandmother had not confirmed her case.  Certainly, the decrease court docket had concluded that the mom had made accountable choices and was mature and accountable.  The appeals court docket agreed that the document supported these conclusions.

The appeals court docket additionally famous that the grandparent visitation statute didn’t apply to the case.  That statute comes into play solely when the custodial mum or dad denies visitation to a grandparent, and there was no proof that visitation had been blocked by the mom or cousin.

The cousin, mom, and guardian advert litem all argued that the grandmother’s attraction was frivolous, and they need to be awarded damages for that cause.  The appeals court docket agreed that the grandmother had did not current any factual allegations or authorized arguments that may help her case.  Subsequently, it despatched the case again to the decrease court docket to compute the damages to be awarded.

For these causes, the Courtroom of Appeals affirmed, and remanded the case to calculate damages for the frivolous attraction.

No. E2019-00727-COA-R3-JV (Tenn. Ct. App. June 2,  2020).

See unique opinion for precise language.  Authorized citations omitted.

To study extra, see Grandparent Visitation Rights Law in Tennessee.

See additionally Tennessee Parenting Plans and Child Support Worksheets: Building a Constructive Future for Your Family that includes examples of parenting plans and youngster help worksheets from actual instances out there on Amazon.com.


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