Assigned on Briefs Date: June 2, 2016
from the General Sessions Court for Loudon County No. 4801
Rex A. Dale, Judge
her husband passed away in 2013, Rose Letsinger filed a
petition in the trial court seeking letters of administration
for his estate. First Choice Community Credit Union filed a
claim against the estate for an unpaid credit card balance.
Letsinger excepted to the claim and filed a motion
to dismiss the claim, asserting that the Credit Union had
failed to comply with Tenn. Code Ann. § 30-2-307 (Supp.
2012) by failing to attach an itemized statement of its
claim. The trial court agreed. It held that the Credit Union
had failed to include an itemized statement. Accordingly, it
dismissed the claim. The Credit Union filed a motion to alter
or amend, arguing that it had filed with its claim what
appears to be the deceased's last monthly statement. It
contended that its filing satisfied the itemized statement
requirement. The trial court denied the motion. The Credit
Union appealed. Later, it filed a motion to dismiss its
appeal. We granted the motion. Following this, Letsinger
filed a motion seeking to compel the Credit Union to disburse
to the estate the funds in the deceased's account with
the Credit Union. The trial court granted the motion. The
Credit Union appeals. We affirm.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the General
Sessions Court Affirmed; Case Remanded
T. Roper, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, First
Choice Community Credit Union.
K. Longworth, Loudon, Tennessee, for the appellee, Rose Mary
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter, and M.
Cameron Himes, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville,
Tennessee, for the appellee, Tennessee Department of
Charles D. Susano, Jr., J., delivered the opinion of the
court, in which Richard H. Dinkins and Arnold B. Goldin, JJ.,
CHARLES D. SUSANO, JR., JUDGE
Letsinger passed away on August 30, 2013. He did not leave a
will. On February 10, 2014, Letsinger filed a petition for
letters of administration. On February 19, 2014, the trial
court issued letters of administration to the widow. Notice
was subsequently sent to the deceased's potential
creditors. On March 21, 2014, the Credit Union filed a claim
against the deceased's estate pertaining to an unpaid
credit card balance of $2, 773.78. Attached to the claim were
(1) apparently the last monthly credit card statement and (2)
a credit card application signed by the deceased on January
14, 1991. On April 7, 2014, Letsinger filed an exception to
the Credit Union's claim, contending that the claim was
deficient and not in compliance with Tenn. Code Ann. §
30-2-307 and § 30-2-310.
10, 2014, the trial court held a hearing regarding
Letsinger's exception. In an order entered the same day,
the trial court dismissed the Credit Union's claim after
noting that it had not filed an itemized statement as
required by Tenn. Code Ann. § 30-2-307(b). On August 8,
2014, the Credit Union filed a motion to alter or amend the
trial court's judgment, asserting that it had provided
the deceased's monthly billing statement as an itemized
statement. On January 7, 2015, the trial court entered an
order denying the Credit Union's motion to alter or
amend. In the order, the court held that "the single
statement filed by the [Credit Union] by itself does not
constitute the itemized statement as required by [Tenn. Code
Ann. §] 30-2-307(b)."
Credit Union filed a notice of appeal on February 5, 2015.
However, after the Credit Union failed to pay the required
litigation tax, this Court dismissed its appeal in an order
entered on April 6, 2015. The Credit Union subsequently filed
a petition on April 9, 2015, to reinstate its appeal,
contending that it had paid the requisite litigation tax by
sending $13.75 to the "Appellate Court Cost Center"
in Nashville. On April 17, 2015, this Court entered an order
reinstating the appeal. Later, the Credit Union moved to
dismiss its appeal. An order was entered dismissing the
three months later, Letsinger filed a motion in the trial
court to compel the Credit Union to release all funds the
deceased had on deposit. In response, the Credit Union
asserted the following, as taken verbatim from its motion:
1. The [trial court] lacks personal jurisdiction over [the]
Credit Union because it has not been sued and served with
process and a formal complaint, as [Letsinger's] Motion
to Compel is procedurally improper.
2. The [trial court] lacks subject matter jurisdiction
because the funds sought by [Letsinger] have passed outside
the [deceased's] estate by virtue of the contractual
setoff set forth in the member agreement which mirrors the
statutory setoff in Tenn. Code Ann. § 45-4-609 and [the
Credit Union] has setoff said funds ...