Home Family Law Ex-Spouse Will get $8K After Her Property is Left in Rat-Infested Storage

Ex-Spouse Will get $8K After Her Property is Left in Rat-Infested Storage

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Tennessee case abstract on divorce post-divorce enforcement & legal professional’s charges

Amanda Paige Ryan-Cothron v. William Michael Cothron

The husband and spouse have been divorced in Rutherford County, Tennessee, in 2018 after coming into right into a marital dissolution settlement.  The settlement included an inventory of things of private property together with their honest market worth.  It supplied that the husband would have them within the storage on a sure day and time, that the husband wouldn’t be on or close to the property when the spouse picked up the gadgets.

The spouse alleged that 95 p.c of her property was unsalvageable or broken, and that a few of it was not positioned within the storage as requested.  She requested for a judgment of $10,000 plus legal professional’s charges.  The husband denied the allegations, and in addition alleged that the spouse did not mitigate her damages.

After trial, the courtroom gave the spouse a judgment of $7,820, however denied her request for storage charges after receiving the property, and denied her request for legal professional’s charges.  The husband appealed to the Tennessee Court docket of Appeals.  He argued that the trial courtroom mustn’t have adopted the honest market values listed within the settlement.  He additionally once more alleged that the spouse did not mitigate damages.  The spouse renewed her request for legal professional’s charges.

The appeals courtroom turned first to the valuation concern.    The trial courtroom had held that the values listed within the doc have been an affordable interpretation and what the events had in thoughts after they signed the settlement.

The husband argued that these values mustn’t have been used, as a result of they really mirrored the worth the spouse had paid for the gadgets.  However the appeals courtroom shortly identified that the husband had agreed to those values, and that there was no different proof of worth earlier than the courtroom.

The courtroom then turned to the query of whether or not the spouse had did not mitigate her damages.

The trial courtroom had discovered that the husband positioned the gadgets within the storage “in some orderly style for pickup.”

The trial courtroom then went by the record of things one after the other, noting the damages and whether or not they had been positioned within the storage as required.

The husband argued that the spouse ought to have picked up gadgets even when they weren’t within the designated space, and that she ought to have tried to restore or clear gadgets that have been broken by rat urine and feces.  He additionally argued that she ought to have come early to select up the property.

The appeals courtroom rejected these arguments, as did the trial courtroom.  The appeals courtroom famous that the husband had not launched proof in help of his declare, similar to the price of restore or cleansing.  For that cause, the appeals courtroom affirmed.

The courtroom then thought-about the spouse’s declare for legal professional’s charges.  The settlement referred to as for legal professional’s charges if both social gathering needed to resort to authorized proceedings to implement the settlement.  The appeals courtroom famous that was precisely what occurred right here.  Due to this fact, it reversed the denial of legal professional’s charges and remanded the case for a dedication of the quantity.

No. M2019-00137-COA-R3-CV (Tenn. Ct. App. July 31,  2020).

See authentic opinion for actual language.  Authorized citations omitted.

To be taught extra, see The Tennessee Divorce Process: How Divorces Work Start to Finish.

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