Session September 6, 2017
from the General Sessions Court for Rutherford County No. 1
Tolbert Gilley, Judge.
case challenging the trial court's interpretation of the
notice requirements of Tenn. Code Ann. § 30-2-306(d), we
find the notice issue moot because the trial court found that
the petitioner's claim was without merit.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the General
Sessions Court Affirmed
Robert Toy, II, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant,
James Lee Owen.
Allen Polk and Amy Broom Pollina, Murfreesboro, Tennessee,
for the appellees, Cristina Amanda Utti-Hodge and Estate of
James Keith Owen.
D. Bennett, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which
Richard H. Dinkins and W. Neal McBrayer, JJ., joined.
D. BENNETT, JUDGE.
Keith Owen ("the decedent") died on July 15, 2015.
His will was probated and his estate was closed on February
25, 2016. On July 14, 2016, the decedent's father, James
Lee Owen ("the petitioner"), filed a petition to
reopen the closed estate asserting that he was a creditor of
the estate and never received actual notice of the right to
file claims against the estate under Tenn. Code Ann. §
30-2-306(d). The petitioner filed a verified claim
against the estate in the amount of $155, 000 for a cash loan
designated "to build spec houses." The trial court
reopened the estate to receive the petitioner's claim,
and the executrix of the estate filed an exception to the
petitioner's claim asserting that the claim was "not
substantiated by sufficient documentation to show that the
decedent owed any money to him" and that it was
trial court held a hearing on November 14, 2016 and heard
testimony from Cristy Owen, daughter of the petitioner and
sister of the decedent, and from the petitioner. The court
made the following findings:
1. The matter that is before the Court initially started out
as a claim for a loan.
2. There has been no evidence submitted to the Court that
provides proof of a loan.
3. Cristy Owen testified that she told her brother that he
needed to pay money back to their father and, apparently, the