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Trent v. Mountain Commerce Bank

Court of Appeals of Tennessee, Knoxville

June 24, 2019

SCOTT TRENT, ET AL.
v.
MOUNTAIN COMMERCE BANK, ET AL.

          Session April 16, 2019

          Appeal from the Chancery Court for Hamblen County No. 2017-CV-460 Jean A. Stanley, Judge. [1]

         In this action requesting declaratory relief, the appellants filed a petition seeking to reform a deed to add an additional grantor and requesting the Trial Court declare that the appellants hold all rights and interest to the property at issue. The Trial Court determined that no mutual mistake existed to support reformation of the original deed and denied the appellants' petition. The Trial Court also declined to declare the appellants to be the only parties holding any interest in the property. Discerning no error, we affirm.

         Tenn. R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the Chancery Court Affirmed; Case Remanded

          William E. Phillips, Rogersville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Scott Trent; Ted C. Trent, Civis Bank; and William E. Phillips, as trustee.

          Steven C. Huret, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellee, First Community Bank, N.A.

          Edward J. Shultz, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Mountain Commerce Bank.

          D. Michael Swiney, C.J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which John W. McClarty, J., joined, and Thomas R. Frierson, II, J., not participating.

          OPINION

          D. MICHAEL SWINEY CHIEF JUDGE.

         Background

         This appeal involves a piece of real property located along West First North Street in Morristown, Tennessee ("the Property"). Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene obtained ownership of the Property as tenants by the entirety by warranty deed on December 6, 2007. On March 10, 2010, Adren S. Greene executed a quitclaim deed transferring his ownership interest of the Property to Real Estate Holdings of East Tennessee, L.P. ("Real Estate Holdings"). According to Adren S. Greene, he and Pamela Green were limited partners in Real Estate Holdings with Adren S. Greene's brother, Shannon Greene, being a general partner.

         On January 30, 2012, the Hamblen County Chancery Court ("Trial Court") entered a judgment in favor of Mountain Commerce Bank ("Mountain Commerce") against Adren S. Greene, Pamela W. Greene, and Lochmere Development, Inc., jointly and severally, in the amount of $300, 000.00 as of January 25, 2012, in addition to any post-judgment interest to accrue at the contract rate of 7.75 percent per anum. Mountain Commerce recorded the judgment against Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene on October 22, 2013. In a separate action, the Washington County Circuit Court entered a judgment on August 3, 2012, in favor of First Community Bank, N.A. ("First Community") against Adren S. Greene, Pamela W. Greene, and Lochmere Development Phase IV, Inc., on two loans totaling $249, 805.63, plus an award of post-judgment interest at the contract rate of 6.5 percent per anum and reasonable attorney's fees.[2] First Community recorded its judgment against Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene on March 28, 2013.

         On August 30, 2016, Real Estate Holdings executed a deed conveying its interest in the Property to Scott Trent and Ted C. Trent. On March 13, 2017, Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene executed a "Quitclaim Deed of Correction," acknowledging that Pamela W. Greene's name was not included as a grantor on the original quitclaim deed to Real Estate Holdings. In this deed of correction, Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene asserted that Pamela W. Greene's name was inadvertently omitted from the original deed and sought to "correct[] the aforesaid error and vest [Real Estate Holdings] with all right, title and interest of [Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene] as of March 10, 2010." This deed was signed by both Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene as grantors of the Property.

         The underlying action was initiated when the petitioners, Scott Trent, Ted C. Trent, Civis Bank, and William E. Phillips, as trustee, (collectively, "Petitioners") filed a petition for declaratory relief in the Trial Court on September 8, 2017, seeking a declaration from the Trial Court that Scott Trent and Ted C. Trent are vested with "all right, title, and interest" in the Property and that interest is subject only to a deed of trust executed in order to secure a loan with Civis Bank. Petitioners further requested that the Trial Court declare that neither Mountain Commerce nor First Community "have any contingent future interest or lien upon [the Property] by virtue of the judgments" against Adren S. Greene and Pamela W. Greene. ...


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