Searching over 5,500,000 cases.

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

In re Brianna B.

Court of Appeals of Tennessee, Nashville

August 23, 2019


          Assigned on Briefs August 1, 2019

          Appeal from the Chancery Court for Maury County No. A-041-16 Stella L. Hargrove, Judge

         This is the second appeal in a case in which the mother of two children appeals the termination of her parental rights to the children. In the first appeal, this Court vacated the trial court's holdings with respect to the grounds for termination and the determination that termination of the mother's rights was in the children's best interest; we remanded the case for the court to make additional factual findings and conclusions of law. On remand, the trial court considered the record and its previous order and entered an order in which it declined to make additional findings, and held "that its ruling is correct and is more than sufficient to find by clear and convincing evidence, that one or more statutory grounds for termination exist, and further, that termination is in the best interest of Lizzie, the remaining minor child." Upon consideration of the record, we vacate the order entered following the remand from the prior appeal and remand the case for entry of an order that makes the factual findings and conclusions of law previously ordered by this Court.

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

          Brandon E. White, Columbia, Tennessee, for the appellant, Debra H.

          L. Samuel Patterson, Columbia, Tennessee, for the appellees, Michael B. and Jacqualin B.

          Richard H. Dinkins, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which D. Michael Swiney, C.J., and Arnold B. Goldin, J., joined.



         This case comes before us for the second time; the salient facts were set forth in the prior opinion:

The Children at issue, Brianna and Elizabeth, were born of the marriage between Debra H. ("Mother") and Michael B. ("Father") in January 2001 and August 2006, respectively. Mother and Father (collectively "the Parents") later divorced, and Father was designated as the primary residential parent pursuant to an agreed parenting plan. Pursuant to the parenting plan, dated March 22, 2012, Mother was not required to remit child support and was awarded co-parenting time every other weekend from Thursday through Sunday.
Father married Jacqualin B. ("Stepmother") (collectively "the Petitioners") in October 2012, and the Children have resided with them since that time. The record reflects that the Parties did not adhere to the parenting plan and that Mother exercised co-parenting time on an occasional basis. Neither party filed a petition to modify the parenting plan. Instead, Petitioners filed a petition to terminate Mother's parental rights on October 21, 2016, based upon the statutory grounds of abandonment for failure to support and to visit, wanton disregard for the children's welfare, and failure to manifest an ability and willingness to assume responsibility for the Children.
Mother objected and moved for visitation with the Children. On June 26, 2017, the court granted visitation in accordance with the terms provided in the existing parenting plan, pending the final hearing on the termination petition. Petitioners then filed a motion to end Mother's visitation on August 15, alleging that visitation was not in the best interest of the Children. Petitioners claimed that Brianna refused to visit and that Mother discussed the facts of the case with Elizabeth, causing the child additional stress and anxiety. Following a hearing on August 30, the court suspended Mother's visitation based upon the living conditions at the residence and Brianna's refusal to visit. The court advised Mother to file a renewed motion once her living conditions improved.
The case proceeded to a hearing on the termination petition on October 30, 2017, and concluded on October 31. …
Following the hearing, the trial court granted the termination petition, sustaining each ground but abandonment based upon wanton disregard and finding that termination was in the best interest of the Children. The court specifically found that Mother was not a credible witness.

In re Brianna B., No. M2017-02436-COA-R3-PT, 2018 WL 6719851, at *1, *6 (Tenn. Ct. App. Dec. 19, 2018) ("Brianna I").

         In the order terminating Mother's rights which was appealed in Brianna I, the trial court made the following factual findings relating to the ground of abandonment by failure to support:

Upon entry in March of 2012, the Permanent Parenting Plan did not require [Mother] to pay child support. [Father] did not pursue court ordered support. Without receipts, the Court cannot accept [Mother]'s testimony of providing school supplies and clothing for the children as truthful. Also, ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.