Assigned on Briefs September 02, 2014
Appeal from the Juvenile Court for Wilson County No. 2009DC148 John T. Gwin, Judge
Patty Stolinsky, Lebanon, Tennessee, for the appellant, Amy Norman.
Kimberly K. Schreiber and J. Ray Akers, Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, for the appellee, Roy Redferrin and Shuwanna Redferrin.
Richard H. Dinkins, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which Frank G. Clement, Jr., P. J., M. S., and W. Neal McBrayer, J. joined.
RICHARD H. DINKINS, JUDGE
Destin R. was born to Amy Redferrin ("Mother") in April 2007. At the time of his birth Mother was living with her father and step-mother ("Grandfather" and "Grandmother" or collectively "Grandparents"); she and Destin continued to live with them until Destin was two years old. During that time Grandfather took care of Destin while Mother was at work or attending school.
When Destin was two, he and Mother moved into their current home with Daniel Norman, who was to become her husband; Destin was enrolled in daycare. In time Destin began exhibiting aggressive behavior, to the extent that he was dis-enrolled from the daycare facility. At the suggestion of his pediatrician, Mother took Destin to a doctor who prescribed medication to help with his aggression. Destin also began seeing Dr. Eboni Webb, a clinical psychologist, who took him off the medication and developed a behavioral modification plan to which all family members and caregivers were to adhere while Destin was in their care. The plan included specific guidelines and a notebook in which the caregiver was to record Destin's activities, food, any behavior problem and how that problem was dealt with at that time. The main focus of the plan was consistency and structure for Destin.
As things progressed, Mother became concerned that the Grandparents were not following the plan when Destin was with them and began restricting his visits with them; the implementation of her restrictions, over time, led to deterioration of the relationship between Mother and Grandparents, particularly Grandmother. On February 15, 2012, Mother informed Grandfather that if he wanted to see Destin "[Grandfather] could come to my house or I would meet him somewhere, but that [Grandmother] wasn't welcome due to a text message of an article that I received."
On April 13, 2012, Grandparents filed a Petition to Establish Grandparent Visitation; a Guardian ad Litem was appointed on January 23, 2013 and submitted a report on February 14. The case came to trial on July 19, 2013. In an order entered August 20, 2013, the court found that Mother "effectively terminated Petitioners' visitation" and ordered specific visitation privileges for the Grandparents with Destin.
Mother appeals, articulating the following issues:
1. Did the trial court err in applying T.C.A. 36-6-306(a)(5) in finding that as Mother lived in Plaintiffs home while the child was in her custody that the statute would apply thus creating a rebuttable presumption that denial of visitation may result in irreparable harm to the child;
2. Did the trial court err in applying T.C.A. 36-6-306(b)(1)(A) and making a finding that maternal grandfather had served as primary caregiver for the child while the child was in Mother's custody and living in his home with Mother;
3. Whether the trial court erred in finding that there was an effective denial of visitation or severance of a relationship between the minor child and Plaintiffs occurred so as to implicate ...