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Millmeyer v. Whitten

Court of Appeals of Tennessee, Jackson

November 7, 2019

TREVOR MILLMEYER
v.
BRIDGET WHITTEN

          Assigned on Briefs October 1, 2019

          Appeal from the Juvenile Court for McNairy County No. 2014-JV-54 Van McMahan, Judge

         Appellant/Father appeals the trial court's denial of his petition to change the surnames of his minor children. The trial court held that Appellant failed to meet his burden to show that changing the children's names is in their best interests. Discerning no error, we affirm.

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

          George D. Norton, Jr., Selmer, Tennessee, for the appellant, Trevor Millmeyer.

          G.W. Sherod, III, Henderson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Bridget Whitten.

          Kenny Armstrong, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which Thomas R. Frierson, II and W. Neal McBrayer, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          KENNY ARMSTRONG, JUDGE

         I. Background

         Trevor Millmeyer ("Appellant" or "Father") and Bridget Whitten ("Mother") are the parents of twin minor children born in 2012. Mother and Father were not married at the time. On October 7, 2014, Father filed a petition to establish parentage and to set visitation and child support. Father's petition also asked the trial court to change the children's surnames to his surname.

         The parties were able to agree on parentage, visitation, and child support. However, the parties disputed whether the children's surnames should be changed, and this question proceeded to hearing on March 13, 2018. On April 24, 2018, the juvenile court issued a letter ruling, wherein it outlined Father's proof and opined that he had not met his burden to show that the requested name change was in the children's best interests. On March 28, 2019, the trial court entered an order denying the name change. Father appeals.

         II. Issues

         The sole issue for review is whether the trial court erred in finding that Father failed to meet his burden to prove that changing the children's surname is in their best interests.

         III. ...


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