Chapter 1
General Provisions

Part 1
In General

16-1-101. Vesting of judicial power.

The judicial power of the state is vested in judges of the courts of general sessions, recorders of certain towns and cities, circuit courts, criminal courts, common law and chancery courts, chancery courts, courts of appeals, and the supreme court, and other courts created by law.

Code 1858, §§ 4094, 4095 (deriv. Const. 1834, art. 6, § 1); Shan., § 5907; mod. Code 1932, § 10107; modified; impl. am. Acts 1979, ch. 68, §§ 2, 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-101.

Cross-References. Constitutional vesting of power, power of general assembly to create courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1.

Law Reviews.

Drug Treatment Courts and Emergent Experimentalist Government, 53 Vand. L. Rev. 831 (2000).

Inferiority Complex: Should State Courts Follow Lower Federal Court Precedent on the Meaning of Federal Law?, 68 Vand. L. Rev. 53  (2015).

Justiciability in Tennessee, Part Three: Timing (Barbara Kritchevsky), 16 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 177 (1986).

Original Meaning and the Precedent Fallback, 68 Vand. L. Rev. 105 (2015).

Attorney General Opinions. General authority of judges of general sessions to administer oaths is not limited by T.C.A. §§ 8-18-107, 8-18-109(b) or 17-1-105, OAG 03-043 (4/15/03).

Comparative Legislation. General provisions:

Ala.  Code § 12-1-1 et seq.

Ark.  Code § 16-10-101 et seq.

Ga. O.C.G.A. § 15-1-1 et seq.

Miss.  Code Ann. § 9-1-5 et seq.

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 476.010 et seq.

Va. Code § 17-1 et seq.

Cited: Elizabethton v. Carter County, 204 Tenn. 452, 321 S.W.2d 822, 1958 Tenn. LEXIS 276 (1958); Cage v. Sexton, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 495 (Tenn. Crim. App. July 10, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Municipal Courts.

Municipal courts may be created by the general assembly, under the authority of this section and under Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1. Deming v. Nichols, 135 Tenn. 295, 186 S.W. 113, 1916 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1916).

While ordinarily the jurisdiction of municipal courts is limited to cases involving violations of municipal ordinances, it may be extended by the legislature to cases arising under state law. Moore v. State, 159 Tenn. 468, 19 S.W.2d 233, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 109 (1929).

Collateral References. Courts 1 et seq.

16-1-102. Powers of court.

Every court has the power to:

  1. Enforce order in its immediate presence, or as near thereto as is necessary to prevent interruption, disturbance, or hindrance to its proceedings;
  2. Enforce order before a person or body acting under its authority;
  3. Compel obedience to its judgments, orders, and process, and to the order of a judge out of court, in an action or proceeding in court;
  4. Control, in furtherance of justice, the conduct of its officers, and all other persons connected with a judicial proceeding before it, in every matter pertaining to the proceeding;
  5. Administer oaths whenever it may be necessary in the exercise of its powers and duties; and
  6. Control its process and orders.

Code 1858, § 4099; Shan., § 5911; mod. Code 1932, § 10110; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-102.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 306.

Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.14.

Law Reviews.

Clashes with Judges Can't Always be Attributed to “Robitis” (Hon. R. Vann Owens) 28 No. 5 Tenn. B.J. 39 (1992).

Attorney General Opinions. General authority of judges of general sessions to administer oaths is not limited by T.C.A. §§ 8-18-107, 8-18-109(b) or 17-1-105, OAG 03-043 (4/15/03).

Sheriff's disregard of chancery court order.  OAG 10-120, 2010 Tenn. AG LEXIS 126 (12/30/10).

Cited: In re Throneberry, 754 S.W.2d 633, 1988 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 138 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1988).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Appellate Court — Enforcement of Judgments and Decrees.

The supreme court of Tennessee has inherent power, as a constituent part, to enforce its final judgments, and to protect them from interference, and such power is guaranteed by subdivisions (3), (4) and (6) of this section, and by § 16-3-202, authorizing the supreme court to issue all writs and process necessary to enforce its jurisdiction. State ex rel. Conner v. Herbert, 127 Tenn. 220, 154 S.W. 957, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1912); Chaffin v. Robinson, 187 Tenn. 125, 213 S.W.2d 32, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 418 (1948).

Where trial court and supreme court had previously sustained validity of annexation ordinance and annexation procedure and same complainants filed suit in chancery court seeking to enjoin collection of taxes in the annexed area and complaint in chancery suit contained basically the same averments as those in the previous proceedings, supreme court issued supersedeas and permanent injunction superseding any action taken or which might be taken in the chancery proceeding and enjoining and restraining complainants from interfering directly or indirectly with previous judgment of the supreme court. State ex rel. Stall v. Knoxville, 211 Tenn. 428, 365 S.W.2d 433, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1963).

Supreme court has power and authority to take such action as it deems proper and appropriate to enforce its decrees and orders and to issue all necessary process to prevent interference therewith. State ex rel. Stall v. Knoxville, 211 Tenn. 428, 365 S.W.2d 433, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1963).

2. Enforcement of Judgments and Decrees Generally.

The power to enforce final judgments is inherent in all courts as a constituent part and is recognized and guaranteed by statute. State ex rel. Stall v. Knoxville, 211 Tenn. 428, 365 S.W.2d 433, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1963).

3. Substitute Service of Process.

Upon motion, supported by affidavit, trial judges may, in the exercise of sound discretion, order in lieu of publication, that the clerk mail a copy of the complaint and summons by return receipt registered mail to defendant's last known address and post a copy of the summons at three public places in the county; that the clerk make an entry on the rule docket so showing, and note thereon and file with the record the document returned, and such a method of substitute service will satisfy both federal and state due process requirements. Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979).

4. Jurisdiction to Try Attorney.

Trial judge had jurisdiction to try appellant attorney for contempt under the interchange provisions; because the appellant's charges of contempt implicated two judges in the first judicial district as witnesses, all the judges of the first judicial district recused themselves from hearing the case, and accordingly, the presiding judge of the first judicial district requested a judge from the second judicial district to hear the contempt proceedings. Wilson v. Wilson (In re Cowan), 877 S.W.2d 271, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 814 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993).

5. Enforcing Order.

Juvenile defendant acted in a contentious and disruptive manner before the court, in violation of T.C.A. § 16-1-102(1), failed to follow the court's order to sit in the area benches, and resisted arrest when the court ordered that defendant be taken to a holding cell; because the court had the right and the responsibility to punish that conduct, there was no need to address defendant's constitutional concerns regarding T.C.A. § 39-16-602(b), and the jury's decision to find defendant guilty of assault and resisting arrest was proper. State v. Roberts, 106 S.W.3d 658, 2002 Tenn. App. LEXIS 579 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2002), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2002 Tenn. LEXIS 685 (Tenn. Dec. 16, 2002).

Because a father willfully refused to pay his share of his children's medical expenses despite his ability to do so, the trial court did not err in holding the father in contempt based on his failure to pay the medical expenses. Brunetz v. Brunetz, — S.W.3d —, 2019 Tenn. App. LEXIS 119 (Tenn. Ct. App. Mar. 8, 2019).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 78, 79.

16-1-103. Contempt.

For the effectual exercise of its powers, every court is vested with the power to punish for contempt, as provided for in this code.

Code 1858, § 4100; Shan., § 5912; Code 1932, § 10111; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-103.

Cross-References. Punishment for contempt, title 29, ch. 9.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.14.

Attorney General Opinions. Authority of city court to punish an individual for contempt of court when the person fails to appear in court for an appointed court date.  OAG 11-17, 2011 Tenn. AG LEXIS 19 (2/15/11).

A court has authority to enter a default judgment of contempt in a proceeding for civil contempt if the alleged contemnor fails to respond or appear, as long as the alleged contemnor has been provided with proper notice and the opportunity to respond. OAG 15-36, 2015 Tenn. AG LEXIS 36  (4/21/15).

Cited: In re Throneberry, 754 S.W.2d 633, 1988 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 138 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1988); State ex rel. Comm'r DOT v. Cox, 840 S.W.2d 357, 1991 Tenn. App. LEXIS 1006 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1991); In re Drake L., — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 445 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 13, 2010); Sloan v. Poff, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 153 (Tenn. Ct. App. Mar. 29, 2011); Furlong v. Furlong, 370 S.W.3d 329, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 559 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 14, 2011); State v. Beeler, 387 S.W.3d 511, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 810 (Tenn. May 9, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Powers.

The power to punish for contempt is inherent in the courts of justice. Thigpen v. Thigpen, 874 S.W.2d 51, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 716 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993).

Trial court had power to impose an order of contempt on three members of a compensation self-insured group trust in liquidation where the members continued to violate court orders to make periodic payments. State ex rel. Flowers v. Tenn. Trucking Ass'n Self Ins. Group Trust, 209 S.W.3d 602, 2006 Tenn. App. LEXIS 251 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2006), appeal denied, State ex rel. Flowers v. Tenn. Trucking Ass'n Self Ins. Group Trust & Trucking Servs., — S.W.3d —, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 1010 (Tenn. 2006).

Juvenile court had authority under T.C.A. § 29-9-104 to hold its court clerk in contempt of court and to incarcerate him to compel compliance with its lawful orders to produce court files to court referees. The finding that his noncompliance was willful under T.C.A. § 29-9-102(3) was supported by the evidence. In re Lineweaver, 343 S.W.3d 401, 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 75 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 28, 2010), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. LEXIS 769 (Tenn. Aug. 25, 2010).

2. Limitation of Powers.

The power of the courts to punish for contempt is limited to the cases laid down in § 29-9-102. Scott v. State, 109 Tenn. 390, 71 S.W. 824, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 82 (1902).

3. Jurisdiction to Try Attorney.

Trial judge had jurisdiction to try appellant attorney for contempt under the interchange provisions; because the appellant's charges of contempt implicated two judges in the first judicial district as witnesses, all the judges of the first judicial district recused themselves from hearing the case, and accordingly, the presiding judge of the first judicial district requested a judge from the second judicial district to hear the contempt proceedings. Wilson v. Wilson (In re Cowan), 877 S.W.2d 271, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 814 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993).

4. No Contempt.

From a doctor's suit against a public hospital regarding his staff privileges being revoked, the doctor's lawyers should not have been held in civil contempt after they sought public records from the hospital while the doctor's interlocutory appeal regarding a discovery dispute was pending because the plain language of the order staying “all proceedings below” was not broad enough to apply to separate actions under T.C.A. § 10-7-505(a) seeking access to public records; the appellate court's stay order could reasonably have been interpreted to apply only to the pending legal and administrative proceedings between the doctor and the hospital. Konvalinka v. Chattanooga-Hamilton County Hosp. Auth., 249 S.W.3d 346, 2008 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (Tenn. Feb. 13, 2008).

Collateral References. Contempt 32-36.

16-1-104. Conflicts in use of courtroom.

In case of conflict among the courts, the use of the courtroom may be regulated by consent, in which case the court yielding the room may hold its session in any other room within the limits of the county seat. If no agreement is made, the circuit court shall be preferred to the chancery court. If excluded from the courtroom on Monday, the circuit court shall try no jury causes on that day, except by consent of parties.

Code 1858, § 4097 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 18, § 12); Shan., § 5909; Code 1932, § 10109; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-104.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.16.

Attorney General Opinions. Distribution of court space by presiding judge, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

Cited: State v. Parton, 817 S.W.2d 28, 1991 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 406 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1991).

Collateral References. Courts 72.

16-1-105. Holding court outside of courthouse or in courthouse or room outside county seat.

    1. If for any cause, in the opinion of the court deemed sufficient, it is impracticable or inconvenient for any court to hold its session at the courthouse, or place designated by law, it shall be lawful for the court to hold its session, or any part of its session, at any other room within the limits of the county seat, or at any other room open to the public within an institution of the department of correction or the department of children's services if the court deems it necessary, and all its proceedings at such place, whether in civil or criminal cases, are as valid as if done at the courthouse.
      1. It is lawful for the court to temporarily hold its session, or any part of its session, in a courthouse or other room located outside the county seat if:
        1. The courthouse in the county seat is rendered temporarily unusable by reason of a natural disaster;
        2. Trials and other judicial proceedings are scheduled to be held in the courthouse during the time the courthouse is temporarily unusable;
        3. Another room located within the county seat with sufficient security and otherwise suitable for conducting court proceedings is not available; and
        4. The presiding judge of the district determines that extraordinary circumstances exist such that temporarily moving the judicial proceedings outside the county seat is in the best interests of justice.
      2. If the presiding judge of the judicial district determines the requirements of subdivision (a)(2)(A) have been met, the presiding judge will consult with the person who schedules events and proceedings at the location outside the county seat to determine dates when the courthouse or room outside the county seat is available for use.
      3. When the courthouse, or place designated by law, within the county seat is ready for use, judicial proceedings must be returned to the courthouse of the county seat, unless a trial is in progress at the time the courthouse within the county seat is ready for use and all parties involved agree to keep the matter in the courthouse or room outside the county seat until the conclusion of the case.
      4. All proceedings held pursuant to this subdivision (a)(2) in a courthouse or other room located outside the county seat, whether civil or criminal cases, are as valid as if done at the courthouse within the county seat.
      5. Nothing in this subdivision (a)(2) allows:
        1. The direct or indirect relocation of the county seat; or
        2. A court to lawfully hold its session at a courthouse or other room located outside the county seat for a period of time longer than is necessary to relocate or reconstruct a courthouse or other room within the limits of the county seat, except as provided in subdivision (a)(2)(C).
      6. As used in this subdivision (a)(2), “natural disaster” has the same meaning as defined in § 4-31-803.
  1. Nothing in this section shall be construed as preventing or prohibiting a county that has constructed a criminal justice building or facility, or that uses a building or facility, that is not located within the limits of the county seat, from holding criminal court in that building or facility; provided, that it is located within the limits of the county. If the building or facility is used to hold criminal court, a defendant may be indicted, prosecuted, tried and convicted in that building or facility as if done at the courthouse.

Code 1858, § 4096 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 6, § 7; 1835-1836, ch. 18, § 13); Shan., § 5908; Code 1932, § 10108; modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-105; Acts 1985 (1st E.S.), ch. 12, § 1; 1989, ch. 278, § 28; 1996, ch. 1079, § 30; 2006, ch. 630, § 2; 2020, ch. 805, § 1.

Amendments. The 2020 amendment added (a)(2).

Effective Dates. Acts 2020, ch. 805, § 2. July 15, 2020.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.16.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, § 2.

Attorney General Opinions. Distribution of court space by presiding judge, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

Unless expressly authorized by T.C.A. §§ 16-2-106 through 16-2-402 or a private act, neither a general sessions nor a circuit court may regularly hold its sessions outside the city limits of the county seat, OAG 05-122 (8/8/05).

Cited: State v. Upchurch, 620 S.W.2d 540, 1981 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 366 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1980); State v. Parton, 817 S.W.2d 28, 1991 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 406 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1991); State v. Carruthers, 35 S.W.3d 516, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 683 (Tenn. 2000); State v. Rimmer, — S.W.3d —, 2006 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 986 (Tenn. Crim. App. Dec. 15, 2006).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Perjury Committed in Building Other Than Courthouse.

Circuit court had jurisdiction to try defendant for perjury committed while court was sitting in federal custom house during period in which courthouse was undergoing repairs, since this section of the Code authorized court to occupy rooms away from courthouse under such circumstances. Exum v. State, 90 Tenn. 501, 17 S.W. 107, 1891 Tenn. LEXIS 32, 25 Am. St. Rep. 700, 15 L.R.A. 381 (1891).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts § 36.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 164, 166.

16-1-106. Minutes.

  1. The minutes of the court for each day's work shall be signed by the judge. The minute book shall provide a place for the judge's signature after the minute entries each day; however, where the orders of the court are photocopied so that an accurate facsimile of the entire order and judge's signature appears, it shall be sufficient for the judge to sign at the end of the minute book approving all the minutes in the book.
  2. When any judge or chancellor fails to sign the minutes of the judge's or chancellor's court because of death, vacancy in office or disability, or for any other reason, the judge's or chancellor's successor shall examine all the unsigned minutes, and if the successor finds that the unsigned minutes satisfactorily represent the true and complete proceedings of the court, the successor shall so certify. The judge's or chancellor's successor shall examine any decree or order that has been signed by the deceased or disabled predecessor but that has not been spread upon the minutes of the court, and if the successor finds that the decree or order is a true and complete decree or order, the successor shall direct that the decree or order be spread upon the minutes of the court and certify the minutes. Any minutes certified by a judge or chancellor pursuant to this subsection (b) have the same force and effect as minutes entered pursuant to subsection (a).

Code 1858, § 4101 (deriv. Acts 1809 (Sept.), ch. 49, § 20); Shan., § 5913; Code 1932, § 10112; Acts 1967, ch. 81, § 1; 1972, ch. 803, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-106; Acts 1984, ch. 756, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 25.

Law Reviews.

The Procedural Details of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, IV. The Record on Appeal (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 35.

Cited: Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937); State v. Hodge, — S.W.3d —, 2009 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 763 (Tenn. Crim. App. Sept. 16, 2009); State v. Houston, 328 S.W.3d 867, 2010 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 197 (Tenn. Crim. App. Mar. 3, 2010).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Purpose.

The failure to read and sign the minutes each morning in open court, and the signing of the same at chambers, or in another town or place, after the court has adjourned, is severely reprehended and deprecated, as likely to result in surreptitious entries and evil practices. Bass v. State, 65 Tenn. 579, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 457 (1873).

Minutes are indigenous to courts of record, and when signed by a trial judge they become the highest evidence of what has been done in the court. Ray v. State, 577 S.W.2d 681, 1978 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 280 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1978).

2. Nature of Statute.

The requirement of this section that the minutes of the court shall be signed by the judge is directory only. Jackson v. Jackson, 3 Shan. 18 (1878); State ex rel. Pierce v. Hardin, 163 Tenn. 471, 43 S.W.2d 924, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 137 (1931); Duboise v. State, 200 Tenn. 93, 290 S.W.2d 646, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 380 (1956).

The provisions of this section are merely directory and not mandatory. Duboise v. State, 200 Tenn. 93, 290 S.W.2d 646, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 380 (1956).

While this section has repeatedly been construed as being directory rather than mandatory, it is nevertheless right and proper that such directions not be ignored. Howard v. State, 217 Tenn. 556, 399 S.W.2d 738, 1966 Tenn. LEXIS 609 (1966).

3. Minutes.

The minutes, signed as required by this statute, and thus authenticated, are made the highest evidence of what was done in court; and, so far as they are records of judicial proceedings, they import absolute verity, and are conclusive unless attacked for fraud. Moore v. State, 50 Tenn. 493, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 23 (1871); Conway v. Brown, 52 Tenn. 237, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 255 (1871); Dyer v. State, 79 Tenn. 509, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 96 (1883); Chrisman v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 178 Tenn. 321, 157 S.W.2d 831, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 62 (1942).

Contention of the defendant that the minutes of the court were not properly signed because trial judge only signed the minute book at the close of all the entries for the day was without merit as no more was required. Fuller v. State, 504 S.W.2d 385, 1973 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 220 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1973).

4. —Failure to Enter Judgment on Day Pronounced — Effect.

Although this section contemplates that a judgment be entered on the day it is pronounced, the statute is directory only; however, the failure to comply with it delays execution of the judgment. Welch v. State, 553 S.W.2d 917, 1977 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 282 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1977).

5. —Failure to Sign — Effect.

The failure of a judge, through inadvertence or accident, to sign the minutes of the court for the day on which a judgment was recovered, does not invalidate the judgment, the provisions of the statute on this subject being directory. Jackson v. Jackson, 3 Shan. 18 (1878).

The minutes of records of courts are generally required to be authenticated by the signature of the judge, but failure of the judge to sign the record as directed by statute does not make the judgment a nullity; it is at most irregular and erroneous, but not void. Crum v. Fillers, 6 Tenn. App. 547, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 149 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926).

Failure of trial judge to sign minutes which contained order convicting defendants or minutes overruling motion for new trial did not invalidate judgment of conviction. Duboise v. State, 200 Tenn. 93, 290 S.W.2d 646, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 380 (1956).

Decree was not invalid because chancellor failed to sign minutes containing such decree. Cobb v. Brown, 42 Tenn. App. 595, 305 S.W.2d 241, 1956 Tenn. App. LEXIS 145 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1956).

6. —Presumption as to Signing.

It will be presumed that the chancellor performed his duty and signed the minutes. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

7. Bill of Exceptions — Death of Judge without Signing.

Unsigned bill of exceptions, if agreed to by counsel, may be considered by the supreme court, where the judge died pending a motion for a new trial, before the adjournment of the court and before the expiration of the time for signing the bill of exceptions. Sims v. State, 72 Tenn. 357, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1880).

8. General Sessions Court — Nature of Dockets.

Where the dockets provided for by Private Acts 1937, ch. 12 creating a court of general sessions for Davidson County were no more than those formerly kept by the justices of the peace whose judicial powers and functions the court took over and where there was no provision that such dockets should be read aloud each morning and verified by signature of the judge, such records did not approach the dignity and verity of the authenticated minutes of a court of record and such court was not a court of record. Chrisman v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 178 Tenn. 321, 157 S.W.2d 831, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 62 (1942).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 51, 53, 54, 56-59, 61, 62.

Courts 113.

16-1-107. Power to sell land.

In all suits, instituted according to law, to sell the real estate of decedents for the payment of debts, or to sell lands for partition, a court of record may decree a sale of lands lying in any part of the state.

Code 1858, § 4102 (deriv. Acts 1847-1848, ch. 170); Shan., § 5914; mod. Code 1932, § 10113; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-107.

Law Reviews.

Abolishing Local Action Rules: A First Step toward Modernizing Jurisdiction and Venue in Tennessee, 34 U. Mem. L. Rev. 251 (2004).

Cited: French v. Buffatt, 161 Tenn. 500, 33 S.W.2d 92, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 35 (1930).

Collateral References. Judicial Sales 7.

16-1-108. Vesting title by decree or clerk's deed.

Courts having jurisdiction to sell lands, instead of ordering parties to convey, may divest and vest title directly by decree, or empower the clerk to make title.

Code 1858, § 4103 (deriv. Acts 1801, ch. 6, § 48; 1837-1838, ch. 176, § 1); Shan., § 5915; Code 1932, § 10114; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-108.

Cross-References. Judgment for specific acts; vesting title, Tenn. R. Civ. P. 70.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 301, 303, 306.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 16 Tenn. Juris., Judicial Sales, §§ 12, 38.

Law Reviews.

Quiet Title Actions in Tennessee, 15 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 263 (1985).

Cited: Davis v. Solari, 132 Tenn. 225, 177 S.W. 939, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 16 (1915); Searight v. White Sewing Mach. Co., 140 Tenn. 50, 203 S.W. 330, 1918 Tenn. LEXIS 18 (1918); Roberts v. Roberts, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 197 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 19, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Transfer of Title.

A bid at a master's sale continues as a mere offer until the court rejects it or accepts it. But the purchaser does not become the owner of the legal title, unless the decree divests and vests title, or unless a deed is made by the master pursuant to a decree ordering him so to do, or unless, on being so ordered, the master fails to make the deed within a reasonable time, in which latter event, the title will vest in the purchaser by the mere lapse of such reasonable time. Camp v. Riddle, 128 Tenn. 294, 160 S.W. 844, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 49 (1913).

2. Confirmation.

Confirmation of report of sale constitutes and completes the contract in court sales of land. Eakin & Co. v. Herbert, 44 Tenn. 116, 1867 Tenn. LEXIS 19 (1867); Myers v. Lindsay, 73 Tenn. 331, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 132 (1880).

Sale of personal property was complete without a confirmation by decree. Saunders & Aycock v. Stallings, 52 Tenn. 65, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 234 (1871).

In case of real property confirmation completes the sale without formal divestiture and investiture in purchaser in whom there is all the beneficial interest regardless of the naked legal title being outstanding. Williams v. Clark, 51 S.W. 130, 1898 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 135 (1898); Killough v. Warren, 58 S.W. 898, 1899 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 182 (Tenn. Ch. App. 1899).

3. Failure of Master to Make Deed.

Decree directing reformation of deed and conveyance of property to complainant by clerk and master operated to invest title in complainant from the date of the decree even though clerk and master did not execute the deed. Behrn v. White, 108 Tenn. 392, 67 S.W. 810, 1901 Tenn. LEXIS 39 (1902).

A sufficient time did not, as a matter of law, elapse between December, 1876, when a decree directed the master to make a deed for land purchased at judicial sale, and February, 1877, to vest the legal title in the purchaser without a deed, by lapse of time. Camp v. Riddle, 128 Tenn. 294, 160 S.W. 844, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 49 (1913).

4. Transfer of Interest before Receiving Sheriff's Deed.

A purchaser of land at a court sale may before he takes the sheriff's deed transfer in good faith such interest as he acquired under the purchase and no registration of such transfer is required. Spicer v. Kimes, 25 Tenn. App. 247, 156 S.W.2d 334, 1941 Tenn. App. LEXIS 102 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1941).

Where decree of court vested title in purchaser but before the deeds were executed by the clerk, the purchaser asked the court to make an order directing the clerk to execute the deeds to him and his wife, which order was entered on the minutes and the deeds were so executed, such procedure vested title in the purchaser and his wife as tenants by the entireties. Spicer v. Kimes, 25 Tenn. App. 247, 156 S.W.2d 334, 1941 Tenn. App. LEXIS 102 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1941).

5. Decree as Evidence.

Such a decree when proper and registered may be introduced as evidence, without production of other parts of the record. Whitmore v. Johnson's Heirs, 29 Tenn. 610, 1850 Tenn. LEXIS 41 (1850).

16-1-109. Registration of decree or clerk's deed.

The decree or deed of the clerk, as the case may be, has the same force and effect as a conveyance by the party, and shall be registered.

Code 1858, § 4104 (deriv. Acts 1801, ch. 6, § 48; 1837-1838, ch. 176); Shan., § 5916; Code 1932, § 10115; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-109.

Cross-References. Judgment for specific acts; vesting title, Tenn R. Civ. P. 70.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 303.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Recording System (Toxey H. Sewell), 50 Tenn. L. Rev. 1 (1982).

Cited: Roberts v. Roberts, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 197 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 19, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Effect of Decree or Deed.

The decree or deed has the effect of a deed duly executed and acknowledged by the parties in interest. White v. O'Bryan, 148 Tenn. 18, 251 S.W. 785, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 77 (1922).

16-1-110. Implied covenants in sales of land.

In cases where the sale is made at the voluntary instance of parties, the decree or deed of the clerk shall imply a covenant of seisin and warranty of title by the parties whose interest is sold, their heirs and representatives, unless otherwise provided in the face of the decree.

Code 1858, § 4105; Shan., § 5917; Code 1932, § 10116; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-110.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 303.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 16 Tenn. Juris., Judicial Sales, § 12; 20 Tenn. Juris., Partition, § 22.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

Implied warranty of title and against encumbrances, where the court sale is made at the instance of the parties for the conversion of their interests into the money, or for like purposes. Staunton v. Harris, 56 Tenn. 579, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 178 (1872).

Where land is sold in constraint of law, in invitum, for the benefit of creditors, either under execution or under the decrees or orders of any competent court, the purchaser obtains no warranty of title or covenants against encumbrances, and can have no recourse on the creditor for any encumbrances, deficiency, or for failure of title, though he may recover for some encumbrances of the party as whose property the land was sold. Staunton v. Harris, 56 Tenn. 579, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 178 (1872); Childress v. Vance, 60 Tenn. 406, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 522 (1873); Hously v. Lindsay, 57 Tenn. 651, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 281 (1873); Foster v. Bradford, 1 Tenn. Ch. 400 (1873); Myers v. Lindsay, 73 Tenn. 331, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 132 (1880); Chandler v. Jobe, 73 Tenn. 591, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 189 (1880); Williams v. Whitmore, 77 Tenn. 262, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 49 (1882); Mayor of Nashville v. Cowan, 78 Tenn. 209, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 165 (1882); Irby v. Irby, 79 Tenn. 165, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 34 (1883); State v. Hill, 87 Tenn. 638, 11 S.W. 610, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 15 (1889); Hunt v. Memphis Gaslight Co., 95 Tenn. 136, 31 S.W. 1006, 1895 Tenn. LEXIS 72 (1895); Brown v. Timmons, 110 Tenn. 148, 72 S.W. 958, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 48 (1903).

2. Sales for Partition.

3. —Decisions not Based on This Section.

In sales for petition authorized by statute where the buyer obtains a defective title and discovers the fact before the conveyance is executed he may recover his purchase money. Deaderick v. Smith, 25 Tenn. 138, 1845 Tenn. LEXIS 46 (1845); Read v. Fite, 27 Tenn. 328, 1847 Tenn. LEXIS 81 (1847); Foster v. Bradford, 1 Tenn. Ch. 400 (1873).

4. Warranties Binding on Parties.

Where the sale of land for a partition was made on the theory that the interests of the remaindermen were vested, whereas in fact they were contingent, the purchasers are not entitled to be relieved from their purchase on their contention that they were thereby deprived of the implied warranty of title, given by this section, where a sale for partition was made at the voluntary instance of the parties. Jordan v. Jordan, 145 Tenn. 378, 239 S.W. 423, 1921 Tenn. LEXIS 86 (1922).

Collateral References. Judicial Sales 50(1).

16-1-111. Use of papers filed in federal courts.

In all cases that have been removed from the courts of the state to the federal courts, and that have been afterward remanded to the state courts, the pleadings, depositions and proofs that have been filed in the federal court during its pendency there shall be used as if the pleadings, depositions and proofs had been originally filed in the state court. In cases where the original depositions, pleadings and proofs cannot be obtained from the federal court for use in the state court, then certified copies of the original depositions, pleadings and proofs may be obtained from the federal court, for use in the state court, instead of the originals.

Acts 1903, ch. 17, §§ 1, 2; Shan., §§ 5917a1, 5917a2; mod. Code 1932, §§ 10117, 10118; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-111.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 317.

16-1-112. Justice of the peace — Name change throughout code.

Tennessee Code Annotated is amended in each of its provisions providing the judicial powers, duties, functions or jurisdiction of the justice of the peace to delete references to “justice of the peace” or any variation of those words and to substitute instead references to the “court of general sessions” or “judge of the court of general sessions” or a variation of those words. The Tennessee code commission is granted the authority to reword the provisions to conform to the appropriate reference and sentence structure and to make grammatical changes necessary to effect those word changes without any change of substantive law.

Acts 1979, ch. 68, § 3; T.C.A., § 19-102.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 7.1.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 251; 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, §§ 1, 2.

Collateral References. Justices of the peace 3.

16-1-113. Court business and filings — Facsimile transmissions.

  1. It is the intent of the general assembly, in recognition of the common practice and use of facsimile transmissions (faxes) in business and government, to:
    1. Promote a more efficient means of filing documents and overcome expenses and delays entailed in long distance communication; and
    2. Enable courts in this state to implement procedures for the filing of documents by fax.
  2. Courts in this state may implement procedures for the transmission of documents by fax machines in accordance with this section and § 16-3-408 and the Tennessee supreme court rules.

Acts 1991, ch. 146, §§ 1, 2.

Cited: Cruse v. City of Columbia, 922 S.W.2d 492, 1996 Tenn. LEXIS 305 (Tenn. 1996).

16-1-114. Immunity for judges sitting specially or by interchange.

Any judge or lawyer sitting specially under § 16-15-209 or § 17-2-208 or by interchange shall have the same immunity as the judge for whom the judge or lawyer is sitting, and the state or county that would provide the defense for the judge for whom the lawyer or judge is sitting shall be required to provide the defense for the substitute judge.

Acts 1997, ch. 473, § 1.

16-1-115. Electronic signatures.

Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, courts in this state may implement procedures for the use of electronic signatures in the signing of pleadings, court orders, judgment orders, affidavits of complaint, arrest warrants, a mittimus or other court documents. An electronic signature may be used to sign a document and shall have the same force and effect as a written signature.

Acts 1997, ch. 505, § 1.

Law Reviews.

The E-Sign Act: A Move in the Right Direction and a Boost for E-Commerce (Daniel W. Van Horn), 37 No. 2 Tenn. B.J. 14 (2001).

Attorney General Opinions. In allowing an officer to use an electronic signature, a detailed proposal for the issuance of an arrest warrant conformed with the statutory provision giving electronic signatures the same force and effect as written signatures in affidavits of complaint and arrest warrants; therefore, the resulting one-page arrest warrant with the electronic signature of the affiant and two original signatures of the judicial commissioner constituted a valid charging instrument, OAG 00-124 (8/7/00).

If an affiant personally appears before a judicial commissioner to swear to the allegations of the arrest warrant and signs the warrant using an electronic signature pad, the resulting arrest warrant bearing the electronic signature constitutes a valid charging instrument, OAG 00-124 (8/7/00).

16-1-116. Transfer of actions or appeals.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law or rule of court to the contrary, when an original civil action, an appeal from the judgment of a court of general sessions, or a petition for review of a final decision in a contested case under the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, is filed in a state or county court of record or a general sessions court and such court determines that it lacks jurisdiction, the court shall, if it is in the interest of justice, transfer the action or appeal to any other such court in which the action or appeal could have been brought at the time it was originally filed. Upon such a transfer, the action or appeal shall proceed as if it had been originally filed in the court to which it is transferred on the date upon which it was actually filed in the court from which it was transferred.

Acts 2000, ch. 794, § 1.

Cited: Hawkins v. Tenn. Dep't of Corr., 127 S.W.3d 749, 2002 Tenn. App. LEXIS 536 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2002); Benson v. Herbst, 240 S.W.3d 235, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 317 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 18, 2007); Ward v. Nat'l Healthcare Corp., — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 695 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 15, 2007); Williams v. City of Milan, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 67 (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 16, 2011); Burkhart v. City of Clarksville, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 161 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 1, 2011); Suggs v. Gallaway Health Care Ctr., — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 185 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 18, 2011); Carbone v. Blaeser, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 780 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 14, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Applicability.

While T.C.A. § 16-1-116 applied generally to cases incorrectly filed in one court which may be transferred to another court, T.C.A. § 9-8-307 applied specifically to the transfer of claims from a court to the Tennessee Claims Commission; therefore, the more general statute, T.C.A. § 16-1-116, was inapplicable. Turner v. State, 184 S.W.3d 701, 2005 Tenn. App. LEXIS 380 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2005).

In a prison inmate's suit against the department of corrections challenging a disciplinary decision against him, dismissal of the inmate's suit was proper as T.C.A. § 41-21-803 expressly provided that the inmate's action be brought in the county in which the correctional facility was located, and he failed to do so; furthermore, the chancellor applied the correct legal standard, and her discretionary determination for not transferring the case to the proper venue was based upon and a consequence of the inmate's previous acts and omissions. Jones v. Tenn. Dep't of Corr., — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 273 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 27, 2007), overruled, Womack v. Corr. Corp. of Am., 448 S.W.3d 362, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 659 (Tenn. Sept. 22, 2014).

Prison inmate's certiorari petition seeking judicial review of a disciplinary proceeding, which petition was filed in a county other than that of the prison, was properly dismissed because the venue requirement of T.C.A. § 41-21-803 was jurisdictional, and the petition also had several procedural defects under T.C.A. § 27-8-104(a) and T.C.A. § 27-8-106, so that neither the interests of justice nor the principles of judicial economy would be served by transferring the case to the proper county. Clark v. S. Cent. Corr. Facility, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 442 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 17, 2007), overruled, Womack v. Corr. Corp. of Am., 448 S.W.3d 362, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 659 (Tenn. Sept. 22, 2014).

Appellate court denied defendant's request that his habeas corpus petition be treated as one for postconviction relief and that the appellate court order the Davidson county court to transfer the matter to the Maury county criminal court to proceed as if the petition was for postconviction relief, because without express authority, it would not order a transfer; the appellate court was not persuaded that T.C.A. § 16-1-116 applied, as postconviction proceedings were governed specifically by T.C.A. § 40-30-101 et seq., and habeas corpus actions were governed specifically by T.C.A. § 29-21-119. Carter v. Bell, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 745 (Tenn. Crim. App. Sept. 21, 2007), aff'd, 279 S.W.3d 560, 2009 Tenn. LEXIS 307 (Tenn. 2009).

In a family's medical malpractice suit against a doctor, his employer, and a hospital, as the family and the employer were in the same county (the hospital was not), and the cause of action arose out of medical treatment provided in that county, transfer of venue to that county under T.C.A. § 20-4-101(b) was proper; since the entire case could have been brought in that county initially, transfer there pursuant to T.C.A. § 16-1-116 was permissible. Pack v. Ross, 288 S.W.3d 870, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 223 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 9, 2008).

In a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 case in which a pro se state inmate filed his complaint in the incorrect venue pursuant to T.C.A. § 41-21-803, the trial court did not err in dismissing the petition. While the inmate had filed an affidavit to proceed in forma pauperis, as required by T.C.A. § 41-21-805, he failed to list any prior lawsuits or claims filed by him. Hayes v. State, 341 S.W.3d 293, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 681 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 8, 2009), appeal dismissed, Hayes v. Turner, — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Feb. 16, 2010).

In a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 case in which a pro se state inmate filed his complaint in the incorrect venue pursuant to T.C.A. § 41-21-803, the trial court did not err in dismissing the petition since the inmate had not exhausted his administrative remedies as required by 42 U.S.C. § 1997e, and exhaustion was a prerequisite to filing an action. Hayes v. State, 341 S.W.3d 293, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 681 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 8, 2009), appeal dismissed, Hayes v. Turner, — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Feb. 16, 2010).

Chancery court erred in granting summary judgment and dismissing an employee's retaliatory discharge case rather than granting the public employer's motion to transfer because the employer raised a jurisdictional objection and, therefore, transfer was mandated. Young v. Davis, — S.W.3d —, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 728 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 30, 2009), overruled in part, Sneed v. City of Red Bank, 459 S.W.3d 17, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 962 (Tenn. Dec. 2, 2014), overruled, Young v. City of Lafollette, 479 S.W.3d 785, 2015 Tenn. LEXIS 695 (Tenn. Aug. 26, 2015).

Court of appeals considered the applicability of the Transfer Statute, T.C.A. § 16-1-116, in plaintiff's appeal of an order dismissing his claim under the Government Tort Liability Act as time barred pursuant to T.C.A. § 29-20-305(b) because the questions before the court of appeals, whether the general sessions court had authority to transfer plaintiff's case to the circuit court and whether plaintiff's claim was time barred, were the central issues before the circuit court; the Transfer Statute was not discussed in the circuit court, but the questions, the issues of subject matter jurisdiction and whether the claim was time barred, were raised. Haynes v. Rutherford County, 359 S.W.3d 585, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 350 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 27, 2011), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 915 (Tenn. Sept. 21, 2011).

Transfer Statute, T.C.A. § 16-1-116, is applicable to Government Tort Liability Act, T.C.A. § 29-20-101 et seq., claims; the Transfer Statute does not create a new substantive right or a new cause of action that could be asserted against the state or its political subdivisions, but the Transfer Statute merely authorizes the transfer of such a claim to a court empowered to hear the merits of the claim. Haynes v. Rutherford County, 359 S.W.3d 585, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 350 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 27, 2011), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 915 (Tenn. Sept. 21, 2011).

Trial court erred in dismissing plaintiff's claim under the Government Tort Liability Act as time barred pursuant to T.C.A. § 29-20-305(b) because the case was properly transferred under the Transfer Statute, T.C.A. § 16-1-116; at the time plaintiff filed in general sessions court, his claim could have been brought in the circuit court, and because the case was properly transferred to a court with jurisdiction, the filing of the action in the sessions court on tolled the running of the statute of limitations before the expiration of the limitations period, and the date of transfer related back to the date plaintiff's claim was originally filed. Haynes v. Rutherford County, 359 S.W.3d 585, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 350 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 27, 2011), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 915 (Tenn. Sept. 21, 2011).

Trial court properly transferred an inmate's action against a private correctional facility in accordance with T.C.A. § 16-1-116 because T.C.A. § 41-21-803 effectively localized actions brought by prisoners and the proper venue in the matter was in the county where the facility was located. Womack v. Corr. Corp. of Am., — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 893 (Tenn. Ct. App. Dec. 20, 2012), rev'd, 448 S.W.3d 362, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 659 (Tenn. Sept. 22, 2014).

4. Transfer.

Both conditions of the Transfer Statute were met; at the time that plaintiff originally filed this action, it could have been brought in the Campbell County Circuit Court, plus it was in the interest of justice for this action to be transferred to the court with subject matter jurisdiction. Bruce v. Jackson, — S.W.3d —, 2019 Tenn. App. LEXIS 234 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 17, 2019).

16-1-117. Reporting case statistics — Automated court information system.

  1. It is the duty of the administrative office of the courts to collect, develop, and maintain uniform statistical information relative to court caseloads in Tennessee. To assist the administrative office of the courts in this duty, the clerks of each court shall report case data as set forth below:
    1. Each criminal case shall be assigned a unique docket number. A criminal case shall be defined and reported as a single charge or set of charges arising out of a single incident concerning a single defendant in one (1) court proceeding. An incident shall be all criminal activity occurring on the same date. A court proceeding refers to a single level of court, such as general sessions or circuit. An appeal, probation revocation, or other post-judgment proceeding shall be considered a separate case. This definition shall not alter the practice in the Tennessee rules of criminal procedure dealing with joinder and severance of criminal cases. In addition, in courts of record, multiple incidents shall be counted as a single case when the charges are of a related nature and it is the district attorney general's intention that all of the charges be handled in the same court proceeding pursuant to a single indictment. If a case has more than one (1) charge or count, then the administrative office of the courts shall count the case according to the highest class of charge or count for the weighted caseload study based on the formula set out in § 16-2-513(a). Nothing in this subdivision (a)(1) shall operate to deprive court clerks of any fees to which they were entitled prior to July 1, 2014;
    2. A civil case shall be defined as all motions, petitions, claims, counterclaims or proceedings between the parties resulting from the initial filing until the case is disposed. A unique docket number will be assigned to a civil case upon filing. Until the case is disposed, all subsequent motions, petitions, claims, counterclaims or proceedings between the parties resulting from the initial filing will be handled under the assigned docket number and will not be assigned a new docket number. Once a civil case has been disposed and further actions occur on the case, the original case will be reopened using the same docket number under which it was originally filed and is subject to additional court costs. All subsequent motions, petitions, claims, counterclaims or proceedings relating to the reopened case will be handled under the one reopened case docket number until disposed. Any subsequent re-openings will still use the original docket number, but will be counted by the administrative office of the courts as a new case for case-reporting purposes and are subject to additional court costs. Civil cases in courts of record shall be counted and reported to the administrative office of the courts according to this subdivision (a)(2);
    3. All general sessions courts and municipal courts with general sessions jurisdiction shall collect and provide court data to the administrative office of the courts based on the definitions for criminal and civil cases as provided in subdivisions (a)(1) and (2);
    4. All courts of record, except for juvenile courts, and all general sessions courts and municipal courts with general sessions jurisdiction shall report caseload data to the administrative office of the courts not less than one (1) time each month, so that all cases filed and disposed in one (1) month have been received by the administrative office of the courts by the fifteenth day of the following month in which the case is filed or disposed. The administrative office of the courts shall create forms to be used by each court in reporting the caseload data;
    5. The administrative office of the courts will provide written notification to any responsible party found not to be in compliance with the reporting requirements. Written notification will detail the type of noncompliance and recommend the corrective action to be taken. If compliance is not achieved during the subsequent reporting period following notification, the administrative office of the courts will no longer accept data from the office not in compliance until such time as the errors are corrected. Notification of this action will be sent to all judges, district attorneys general, district public defenders and court clerks within the district where the noncomplying office is located. Notification will also be sent to the district attorneys general conference, the district public defender conference, the administrative office of the courts and the county officials association of Tennessee. Any periods of noncompliance will also be reported in the annual report to the chairs of the judiciary committee of the house of representatives and the judiciary committee of the senate;
      1. The clerks of those courts wherein commitments to a mental institution, as defined in § 16-10-213, are ordered or persons are adjudicated as a mental defective, as defined in § 16-10-213, shall report information described in § 16-10-213(c) regarding individuals who have been adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution. Included in the report pursuant to this subdivision (a)(6)(A) shall be the date in which such information was also reported to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS index;
      2. The clerks of courts, pursuant to the reporting requirements of §§ 16-10-213, 16-11-206, 16-15-303 and 16-16-120, shall provide sufficient information to the administrative office of the courts who shall make such reports on behalf of those clerks as soon as practicable, but no later than the third business day following the date of receipt of signed order;
      3. The information reported pursuant to subdivision (a)(6)(A) shall be maintained as confidential and not subject to public inspection, except for such use as may be necessary in the conduct of any proceedings pursuant to §§ 39-17-1316, 39-17-1353 and 39-17-1354;
      4. The administrative office of the courts shall provide written notification to any responsible party found not to be in compliance with the reporting requirements of this subdivision (a)(6) or with the reporting requirements of §§ 16-10-213, 16-11-206, 16-15-303 and 16-16-120. If compliance is not achieved during the subsequent reporting period following notification, the administrative office of the courts will no longer accept data from the office not in compliance. Notification of this action will be sent to all judges, district attorneys general, district public defenders and court clerks within the district where the noncomplying office is located. Notification will also be sent to the district attorneys general conference, the district public defenders conference, the administrative office of the courts and the county officials association of Tennessee. Any periods of noncompliance will also be reported in the annual report to the chair of the judiciary committee of the senate and the chair of the judiciary committee of the house of representatives.
  2. Any automated court information system being used or developed on or after July 1, 2003, including, but not limited to, the Tennessee court information system (TnCIS) being designed pursuant to § 16-3-803(h), shall ensure comparable data will be reported to the administrative office of the courts with respect to courts of record, and criminal cases in general sessions courts and municipal courts with general sessions jurisdiction, using the definitions and standards set forth in subsection (a). Each system shall use the Tennessee code citation on each criminal charge, and have the capability of using this information to classify the type and class of each charge.

Acts 2001, ch. 408, § 4; 2002, ch. 791, §§ 2-4, 6; 2013, ch. 236, § 37; 2013, ch. 300, § 1; 2014, ch. 673, § 1; 2018, ch. 799, § 6; 2019, ch. 345, § 19; 2019, ch. 420, § 6.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment by ch. 236  substituted “the chairs of the civil justice committee of the house of representatives and the judiciary committee of the senate” for “the chairs of the judiciary committees of the house of representatives and the senate” in the last sentence of (a)(5).

The 2013 amendment by ch. 300 added (a)(6).

The 2014 amendment rewrote (a)(1) which read: “Each criminal case shall be assigned a unique docket number. A criminal case in a court of record, except juvenile court, shall be defined and reported as a single charge or set of charges arising out of a single incident involving the same victim or victims concerning a defendant in one (1) court proceeding. An incident shall be all criminal activity occurring within a twenty-four-hour period. A court proceeding refers to a single level of court, such as general sessions, circuit, appeals or supreme court. An appeal, probation revocation, or other post-judgment proceeding shall be considered a separate case. This definition shall not alter the practice in the Tennessee rules of criminal procedure dealing with joinder and severance of criminal cases. Charges of a related nature shall be defined as charges against a single defendant that may have more than one (1) victim and that are similar, such as, but not limited to, burglaries, drug offenses or serial rape. Worthless check cases shall be defined and reported as all worthless checks filed by the same affiant against the same defendant within a twenty-four-hour period with each check counted as a separate charge. District attorneys general shall treat multiple incidents as a single incident for purposes of this subdivision (a)(1) when the charges are of a related nature and it is the district attorney general's intention that all of the charges be handled in the same court proceeding. If a case has more than one (1) charge or count, then the administrative office of the courts shall count the case according to the highest class of charge or count at the time of filing or disposition for the weighted caseload study based on the formula set out in § 16-2-513(a);”.

The 2018 amendment substituted “The clerks of courts,” for “The clerks of those courts unable to make direct reports to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS index” in (a)(6)(B).

The 2019 amendment by ch. 345 substituted “judiciary” for “civil justice” preceding “committee of the house” in (a)(5) and (a)(6)(D).

The 2019 amendment by ch. 420 deleted “to the judicial council and” following “Any periods of noncompliance will also be reported in the annual report” in (a)(5).

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 236, § 94. April 19, 2013.

Acts 2013, ch. 300, § 11. July 1, 2013.

Acts 2014, ch. 673, § 2. July 1, 2014.

Acts 2018, ch. 799, § 7. July 1, 2018.

Acts 2019, ch. 345, § 148. May 10, 2019.

Acts 2019, ch. 420, § 27. May 21, 2019.

Cross-References. Confidentiality of public records, § 10-7-504.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Rule 11, § II of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Tennessee.

Cited: State v. Webb, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 101 (Tenn. Crim. App. Feb. 11, 2011).

16-1-118. Utilization of electronic court filing system provider authorized by the administrative office of the courts.

Unless otherwise provided by law, all courts in this state that implement an electronic court filing system pursuant to Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 46 and Tennessee Rule of Civil Procedure 5B shall utilize only a system provider authorized by the administrative office of the courts. The administrative office of the courts shall establish technical standards with the goals of ensuring integrity of filings, assuring an environment that promotes uniformity and ease of filing, and providing the framework for future compatibility among e-filing solutions implemented by local and state courts. Nothing in this section shall require the administrative office of the courts to begin implementing a statewide e-filing system.

Acts 2013, ch. 279, § 1.

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 279, § 2. July 1, 2013.

16-1-119. Advisory task force to review composition of judicial districts.

      1. By no later than September 1, 2018, the speaker of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives shall establish an advisory task force to review the composition of Tennessee's current judicial districts codified at § 16-2-506.
      2. The task force shall be composed of eleven (11) members, as follows:
        1. Three (3) current trial court judges, one (1) representing each grand division, appointed by joint action of the speaker of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives;
        2. Three (3) current district attorneys general, one (1) representing each grand division, appointed by joint action of the speaker of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives;
        3. Three (3) current district public defenders, one (1) representing each grand division, appointed by the joint action of the speaker of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives; and
        4. Two (2) citizen members, one (1) appointed by each speaker. The citizen members must reside in different grand divisions.
      3. The speakers shall jointly designate one (1) of the members to serve as chair of the task force.
      1. By no later than December 1, 2019, the task force shall complete its findings and recommend and publish a proposed statewide judicial redistricting plan. The plan shall provide reasonable and timely access to Tennessee's circuit, chancery, and criminal courts and shall promote the efficient utilization of publicly funded resources allocated for the courts.
      2. Prior to completing its findings and recommending this plan, the task force shall conduct at least one (1) public hearing within each of the three (3) grand divisions and shall receive oral and written testimony from interested organizations and citizens of this state. In addition, the task force shall establish a publicly accessible judicial redistricting task force page on the website of the administrative office of the courts for redistricting-related information, including meeting notices and redistricting plans.
    1. The task force shall deliver a report of its findings, as well as its proposed judicial redistricting plan, to the governor, the speakers of the senate and house of representatives, the judiciary committee of the senate, the judiciary committee of the house of representatives, and the administrative office of the courts at least one (1) week prior to publication of the proposed judicial redistricting plan.
    1. The administrative office of the courts shall provide support services to the task force created under this section.
    2. The members of the task force shall serve without compensation but shall be entitled to reimbursement of any travel expenses incurred. All reimbursement for travel expenses shall be in conformity with the comprehensive state travel regulations as promulgated by the commissioner of finance and administration and approved by the attorney general and reporter.
    3. The task force shall cease to exist upon completion of the task force's report and recommendations.

Acts 2018, ch. 974, § 4; 2019, ch. 345, § 20.

Amendments. The 2019 amendment substituted “judiciary” for “civil justice” following “senate, the” in (a)(3).

Effective Dates. Acts 2018, ch. 974, § 5. May 21, 2018.

Acts 2019, ch. 345, § 148. May 10, 2019.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

16-1-120. Processing passport applications — Photographs for passports.

If a court clerk chooses to process passport applications, the court clerk may take photographs for the passports and charge a reasonable fee for such service.

Acts 2019, ch. 344, § 1.

Effective Dates. Acts 2019, ch. 344, § 2. May 10, 2019.

Part 2
Defense of Unclean Hands [Repealed]

16-1-201. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

16-1-202. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

16-1-203. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

16-1-204. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

16-1-205. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

16-1-206. [Repealed.]

Acts 2010, ch. 908, § 1; repealed by Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 1, effective February 23, 2012.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-1-20116-1-206 concerned the defense of unclean hands.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 2 provided that it is the legislative intent of the act to repeal the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands, codified in title 16, chapter 1, part 2. It is the further legislative intent, consistent with the original enactment's intent, that the common law equitable doctrine shall remain in full force and effect, unchanged and unadulterated, by the original enactment or this repeal.

Acts 2012, ch. 518, § 3 provided that any person affected by the repeal of the statutory codification of the equitable defense of unclean hands having a claim arising out of any act or omission resulting from such codification shall bring suit in chancery or circuit court alleging such claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim not later than one year after February 23, 2012, or forever be barred from asserting such claim under title 16, chapter 1, part 2, as a claim, counterclaim, or defense to a claim. The limitation of this section shall not affect any claim or defense or application of any other equitable doctrine arising under the common law.

Chapter 2
Judicial Divisions and Districts

Part 1
Appellate Courts

16-2-101. Grand divisions — Appeals from Marion County.

  1. For the administration of justice in the supreme court, the court of appeals and the court of criminal appeals, the state is divided into the three (3) grand divisions described in §§ 4-1-201 — 4-1-204.
  2. All appeals, writs of error and appeals in the nature of a writ of error from the chancery and circuit courts of Marion County shall be granted to and heard by the supreme court, the court of appeals and the court of criminal appeals, within their respective jurisdictions, sitting at Nashville.

Code 1858, § 100 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 8); Shan., § 129; Acts 1923, ch. 70; Code 1932, § 147; Acts 1941, ch. 17, § 1; C. Supp. 1950, §§ 147, 148; impl. am. Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 1; modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-201.

Law Reviews.

Tennessee Criminal Law: An Overview of the Courts and a Compendium of Tennessee Criminal Procedure, 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 90.

The Tennessee Court System (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 189.

Comparative Legislation. Judicial divisions:

Ala.  Code § 12-11-2.

Ga. O.C.G.A. § 15-6-1 et seq.

Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 21A.010 et seq.

Miss.  Code Ann. § 9-5-3 et seq.; § 9-7-3 et seq.

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 478.073 et seq.

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 7A-1 et seq.

Va. Code § 17-119.1:1 et seq.

Collateral References. Courts 50, 74, 75.

16-2-102. Places where supreme court sessions held.

The supreme court for the eastern division is held at Knoxville; for the middle division, at Nashville; and for the western division, at Jackson. In addition to the places where the supreme court is required to be held by the Constitution of Tennessee, it may be held in other places that the chief justice may from time to time designate.

Code 1858, § 104; Acts 1867-1868, ch. 76, § 1; 1869-1870, ch. 18, § 1; 1870, ch. 24, § 3; Shan., § 133; Code 1932, § 151; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-202; Acts 1984, ch. 713, § 1.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Places where supreme court to hold court, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.10.

Law Reviews.

Tennessee Criminal Law: An Overview of the Courts and a Compendium of Tennessee Criminal Procedure (Michael R. Tilley), 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 90.

Collateral References. Courts 74.

16-2-103. Times of supreme court sessions.

The court shall hold one (1) session each year, as follows: at Knoxville on the second Monday in September; at Nashville on the first Monday in December; and at Jackson on the first Monday in April of each year.

Code 1858, § 105; Acts 1877, ch. 4, § 1; Shan., § 134; Code 1932, § 152; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-203.

Cross-References. Places where supreme court to hold court, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

16-2-104. Transfer of supreme court cases between divisions.

The supreme court is empowered to direct the hearing of all of the cases coming to the supreme court from any county, in any division of the state, in any other division of the state; provided, that all appeals, appeals in error, writs of error, petitions for certiorari and all other proceedings for the correction of error arising in the respective divisions shall be taken to Knoxville, Nashville and Jackson, transcripts there filed, and all decrees, orders and judgments shall be entered at Knoxville, Nashville and Jackson; provided, however, that nothing in this section shall be construed to interfere with or dispense with the regular sittings of the supreme court at Knoxville, Nashville and Jackson, for the trial and disposition of the causes in the respective grand divisions of the state, but that this section shall only apply to emergency causes, to causes wherein the general public welfare demands a speedy hearing, to causes involving the title to any public office, or to causes where the parties agree thereto, arising in any grand division, either during vacation or when the court is sitting in some other grand division, or to the consideration and decision of causes which the court, sitting in any grand division, has not had time to decide before adjourning.

Acts 1915, ch. 95, § 1; Shan., § 135a1; Code 1932, § 154; Acts 1939, ch. 17, § 1; C. Supp. 1950, § 154; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-204.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 218.

Law Reviews.

Appellate Practice — Advancing Case for Hearing Out of Regular Order, 12 Tenn. L. Rev. 130.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Transfer by Court.

The supreme court had authority to transfer a case from one division of the state to another, in order to obtain an earlier hearing, when the court was not able to consider and decide the case before completing its sitting in the division from which the case was transferred, even though the parties did not consent thereto. Provident Life & Acci. Ins. Co. v. Prieto, 168 Tenn. 126, 76 S.W.2d 314, 1934 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1934).

2. Emergency Causes.

There is no emergency warranting transfer of hearing on application of parties wishing to force sale of realty during financial distress of the community where the appellees are protected by injunction bond and the property is held by a receiver appointed by the court. Foster v. Harle, 165 Tenn. 616, 57 S.W.2d 452, 1932 Tenn. LEXIS 94 (1933).

The exercise of the authority conferred by this section should be confined to “emergency causes,” or those where great or irreparable injury or wrong might result from a delay. State v. Meux, 166 Tenn. 286, 61 S.W.2d 974, 1933 Tenn. LEXIS 93 (1933).

A quo warranto proceeding by a new road commission, created under a law impliedly repealing the former law, against the commission created under the former law to determine which of the two was entitled to administer the road law is not an “emergency cause” within the meaning of this section. State v. Meux, 166 Tenn. 286, 61 S.W.2d 974, 1933 Tenn. LEXIS 93 (1933).

16-2-105. Transfer of supreme court cases by consent of parties.

The hearing and determination of any case, other than those involving emergency or general public welfare referred to in § 16-2-104, may, upon written application, presented in person by counsel representing all parties, and with the unanimous approval of the court, be transferred from any one (1) grand division to the court sitting in any other grand division of the state, this provision being intended to expedite the hearing of important cases, the speedy determination of which is advisable.

Acts 1923, ch. 70, § 2; Shan. Supp., § 135a6; mod. Code 1932, § 158; modified; Acts 1963, ch. 111, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-205.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

16-2-106. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-2-106 (Acts 1931 (2nd E.S.), ch. 38, § 1; C. Supp. 1950, § 159; 1973, ch. 356, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-206), concerning judicial circuits and chancery divisions, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 15, which repealed this section except insofar as this section divided existing circuit, criminal or chancery courts into parts or divisions. It was the intent of the general assembly to create new judicial districts in accordance with § 16-2-506, but to retain and continue the existing parts or divisions of the courts as they are set out. For present provisions relating to judicial districts, see part 5 of this chapter.

Attorney General Opinions. Unless expressly authorized by T.C.A. §§ 16-2-106 through 16-2-402 or a private act, neither a general sessions nor a circuit court may regularly hold its sessions outside the city limits of the county seat, OAG 05-122 (8/8/05).

16-2-107. Transfer of cause of action.

In judicial districts that have a separate circuit and chancery court or in districts that have more than one (1) division of circuit or chancery court, if a civil cause of action is filed in the improper court or the improper division of court within the judicial district, upon the motion of either party, or upon the court's own motion, the civil cause of action may be transferred to the proper court or proper division within such district.

Acts 1991, ch. 265, § 1.

Law Reviews.

Civil Procedure — Flowers v. Dyer County: The Death of the Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction, 23 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 409 (1993).

Cited: Spann v. Abraham, 36 S.W.3d 452, 1999 Tenn. App. LEXIS 746 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1999).

Part 2
Circuit and Criminal Divisions Enumerated

16-2-201 — 16-2-231. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former part 2, §§ 16-2-20116-2-231 (Acts 1931 (2nd E.S.), ch. 38, § 1; 1935, ch. 125, § 1; 1935 Private, ch. 332, § 1; 1937, ch. 59, § 1; 1937, ch. 98, § 1; 1937, ch. 204, § 1; 1937, ch. 205, § 1; 1939, ch. 61, § 1; 1939, ch. 119, § 1; 1943, ch. 28, § 1; 1943, ch. 94, § 1; 1947, ch. 138, §§ 1-3; C. Supp. 1950, § 159; Acts 1951, ch. 12, § 1; 1951, ch. 17, § 1; 1951, ch. 28, § 1; 1951, ch. 73, § 12 (Williams, § 159); Acts 1953, ch. 2, § 1; 1953, ch. 18, § 1; 1953, ch. 206, § 1; 1955, ch. 19, §§ 1, 2; 1955, ch. 104, § 1; 1955, ch. 107, § 1; 1955, ch. 222, § 1; 1957, ch. 2, § 1; 1957, ch. 47, § 1; 1957, ch. 54, § 12; 1957, ch. 95, §§ 1, 2; 1957, ch. 205, § 1; 1957, ch. 226, § 1; 1957, ch. 249, § 1; 1957, ch. 280, §§ 1, 2; 1957, ch. 342, § 1; 1959, ch. 99, §§ 1, 2; 1959, ch. 208, §§ 1, 2; 1961, ch. 87, § 1; 1961, ch. 161, §§ 7, 8; 1961, ch. 257, § 1; 1961, ch. 315, § 1; 1963, ch. 262, §§ 1, 2; 1963, ch. 306, § 1; 1963, ch. 344, § 1; 1965, ch. 17, § 1; 1965, ch. 75, § 1; 1965, ch. 188, §§ 1-3; 1965, ch. 204, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 274, §§ 2, 3, 9; 1967, ch. 5, § 1; 1967, ch. 7, § 1; 1967, ch. 10, §§ 1-3; 1967, ch. 47, § 1; 1967, ch. 162, § 1; 1967, ch. 228, §§ 1-3, 13; 1967, ch. 247, § 1; 1967, ch. 248, §§ 1, 2, 8; 1968, ch. 433, §§ 1, 2; 1968, ch. 457, §§ 1, 2; 1968, ch. 467, § 1; 1968, ch. 496, § 1; 1968, ch. 616, § 1; 1969, ch. 265, § 1; 1969, ch. 276, §§ 1, 2; 1970, ch. 513, § 1; 1970, ch. 542, § 1; 1971, ch. 239, § 1; 1971, ch. 347, § 1; 1972, ch. 442, §§ 3, 4; 1972, ch. 462, §§ 2, 8; 1972, ch. 515, §§ 1, 2; 1972, ch. 520, § 10; 1972, ch. 593, § 1; 1972, ch. 863, § 8; 1973, ch. 390, § 1; 1974, ch. 526, § 9; 1974, ch. 686, §§ 1, 2; 1974, ch. 711, §§ 1, 2; 1974, ch. 718, §§ 1-3; 1974, ch. 783, §§ 1, 3-5, 8, 9; 1975, ch. 8, § 1; 1975, ch. 14, § 1; 1975, ch. 15, §§ 1, 2; 1975, ch. 94, § 1; 1975, ch. 304, § 1; 1976, ch. 478, § 1; 1976, ch. 518, § 3(b); 1976, ch. 544, § 1; 1977 Private Acts, ch. 51, § 1; 1977, ch. 199, §§ 1, 2; 1977, ch. 216, § 1; 1977, ch. 418, §§ 2, 3, 10-12; 1977, ch. 444, §§ 2, 3; 1978, ch. 707, §§ 1, 2; 1978, ch. 798, §§ 1, 2; 1978, ch. 848, §§ 1, 10; 1979, ch. 150, § 1; 1979, ch. 238, § 1; 1979, ch. 427, §§ 1, 2; 1980, ch. 557, §§ 1, 2; 1980, ch. 803, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-207 — 16-236), concerning the enumeration of circuit and criminal divisions, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 15, which repealed this part except insofar as this part divided existing circuit, criminal or chancery courts into parts or divisions. It was the intent of the general assembly to create new judicial districts in accordance with § 16-2-506, but to retain and continue the existing parts or divisions of the courts as they are set out.

Attorney General Opinions. Laws applicable to the circuit and chancery courts of the 1st Judicial District are T.C.A. Ann. §§ 16-2-201 and 16-2-301 to the extent those statutes divided the courts into parts and divisions; and T.C.A. §§ 16-2-501et seq., OAG 05-072 (5/3/05).

Disclosing terms of consulting contracts for services rendered outside the state, OAG 05-073 (5/4/05).

Part 3
Chancery Divisions Enumerated

16-2-301 — 16-2-317. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former part 3, §§ 16-2-30116-2-317 (Acts 1931, ch. 80, §§ 3, 4; 1931 (2nd E.S.), ch. 38, § 1; 1935, ch. 148, § 1; 1935, ch. 153, §§ 1, 2; 1941, ch. 12, § 1; 1941, ch. 27, §§ 1, 2; 1941, ch. 160; 1945, ch. 12, § 1; C. Supp. 1950, §§ 159, 159.1 (Williams, § 159 and note); Acts 1951, ch. 199, § 1; 1951, ch. 269, § 1; 1953, ch. 140, § 1; 1955, ch. 217, § 1; 1955, ch. 224, § 1; 1955, ch. 255, § 1; 1957, ch. 2, § 2; 1957, ch. 294, § 1; 1957, ch. 377, § 1; 1961, ch. 85, § 1; 1961, ch. 161, §§ 1, 2; 1961, ch. 275, § 1; 1963, ch. 371, §§ 1, 2; 1965, ch. 74, § 1; 1965, ch. 274, §§ 2, 3, 9; 1967, ch. 22, § 1; 1967, ch. 27, § 1; 1967, ch. 54, § 1; 1967, ch. 248, §§ 1, 2, 8; 1967, ch. 295, § 1; 1967, ch. 320, §§ 1, 2, 5; 1968, ch. 429, § 1; 1968, ch. 457, § 2; 1968, ch. 505, § 1; 1968, ch. 561, § 1; 1969, ch. 198, §§ 1-3; 1972, ch. 462, §§ 2, 8; 1972, ch. 863, § 8; 1973, ch. 356, §§ 2, 3; 1974, ch. 547, § 6; 1974, ch. 718, §§ 11, 12; 1974, ch. 783, § 2; 1975, ch. 14, § 1; 1975, ch. 207, § 1; 1975, ch. 295, § 1; 1976, ch. 577, § 2; 1977, ch. 418, §§ 2, 7; 1978, ch. 919, § 1; 1979, ch. 342, §§ 1, 2; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-237 — 16-250, 16-252 — 16-254), concerning the enumeration of chancery divisions, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 15, which repealed this part except insofar as this part divided existing circuit, criminal or chancery courts into parts or divisions. It was the intent of the general assembly to create new judicial districts in accordance with § 16-2-506, but to retain and continue the existing parts or divisions of the courts as they are set out.

Part 4
Special Chancery Divisions Enumerated

16-2-401, 16-2-402. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former part 4, §§ 16-2-401 and 16-2-402 (Acts 1931 (2nd E.S.), ch. 38, § 1; 1949, ch. 230, § 1; C. Supp. 1950, § 159; Acts 1957, ch. 197, § 1; 1968, ch. 561, §§ 2, 4, 5; 1974, ch. 711, §§ 3, 4; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-251, 16-255), concerning the enumeration of chancery divisions, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 15, which repealed this part except insofar as this part divided existing circuit, criminal or chancery courts into parts or divisions. It was the intent of the general assembly to create new judicial districts in accordance with § 16-2-506, but to retain and continue the existing parts or divisions of the courts as they are set out.

Part 5
Trial Courts

16-2-501. Legislative purpose — Existing courts.

  1. The general assembly expressly declares that its purpose in enacting this part is to reorganize the existing trial court system of this state in such a way that its growth occurs in a logical and orderly manner. It does not have as its purpose the abolition of any court or judicial office.
  2. Nothing in this part shall be construed as altering, diminishing or abolishing chancery court or the constitutional and historical distinctions between chancery court and circuit court.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 26, provided that all other laws or parts of law in conflict with the provisions of ch. 931 were repealed.

Cross-References. Power of general assembly to create courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 9.

Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), §§ 24.10, 24.17.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Legislative Intent.

The general assembly did not intend, by the enactment of this part, to give the chancery court of Dyer County unbridled discretion to hear cases involving unliquidated damages, so as to confer upon it an authority beyond that of every other chancery court in the state. Flowers v. Dyer County, 830 S.W.2d 51, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 491 (Tenn. 1992), rehearing denied, — S.W.2d —, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 368 (Tenn. May 4, 1992).

16-2-502. Titles of judges — Jurisdiction.

Each trial court judge shall continue to be officially known and designated as either a chancellor, circuit court judge, criminal court judge, or law and equity court judge, depending upon the position to which the chancellor or judge was elected or appointed prior to June 1, 1984. Any judge or chancellor may exercise by interchange, appointment, or designation the jurisdiction of any trial court other than that to which the judge or chancellor was elected or appointed.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 2.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.10.

Cited: Dupuis v. Hand, 814 S.W.2d 340, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 168 (Tenn. 1991).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Jurisdiction to Try Attorney.

Trial judge had jurisdiction to try appellant attorney for contempt under the interchange provisions; because the appellant's charges of contempt implicated two judges in the first judicial district as witnesses, all the judges of the first judicial district recused themselves from hearing the case, and accordingly, the presiding judge of the first judicial district requested a judge from the second judicial district to hear the contempt proceedings. Wilson v. Wilson (In re Cowan), 877 S.W.2d 271, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 814 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993).

16-2-503. Filing and processing of actions.

Suits shall be filed in the same court and processed by the same clerk as they were filed and processed prior to September 1, 1984.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 3.

16-2-504. Selection of clerk and master — Trial court judge as chancellor.

In those judicial districts in which this part has left a particular district without a chancellor, all trial court judges within that district shall be designated as chancellors for the purpose of selecting the clerk and master. The trial court judges shall also sit as chancellors for the purpose of disposing of those cases filed in chancery court. In judicial districts in which one (1) or more chancellors remain, the clerk and master shall continue to be selected as provided by law.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 4.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 615.

16-2-505. Election of additional judges — Secretary — Courtroom security — Judicial candidates.

  1. In any judicial district in which § 16-2-506 requires the election of an additional judge, the election shall occur in August of that year. The qualified voters of the judicial district in which the election is required shall elect a person to the office of judge for that district. That person shall possess the same qualifications, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other judges.
    1. If the election occurs in 1984, 1986, or 1988, the person elected shall hold office until September 1, 1990, and until that person's successor is elected and qualified. Thereafter, a judge shall be elected for an eight-year term. At the regular August election in 1990, the qualified voters of all judicial districts required by § 16-2-506 to elect an additional judge in such year shall elect a person to such office for a full eight-year term. The person elected in 1990 as an additional judge for each such district shall possess the same qualifications, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other circuit court judges.
    2. If the election occurs in 1992, 1994, or 1996, the person elected shall hold office until September 1, 1998, and until the person's successor is elected and qualified. Thereafter, a judge shall be elected for an eight-year term. At the regular August election in 1998, the qualified voters of all judicial districts required by § 16-2-506 to elect an additional judge in 1992, 1994, 1996 or 1998 shall elect a person to such office for a full eight-year term. The person elected in 1998 shall possess the same qualifications, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other circuit court judges or chancellors.
    3. If the election occurs in 2000, 2002, or 2004, the person elected shall hold office until September 1, 2006, and until the person's successor is elected and qualified. Thereafter, a judge shall be elected for an eight-year term. At the regular August election in 2006, the qualified voters of all judicial districts required by § 16-2-506 to elect an additional judge in 2000, 2002, 2004 or 2006 shall elect a person to such office for a full eight-year term. The person elected in 2006 shall possess the same qualifications, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other circuit court judges or chancellors.
    4. Any vacancy occurring in the office of one (1) of the circuit court judges elected pursuant to § 16-2-506 shall be filled as provided by law.
  2. Upon the election of a judge pursuant to § 16-2-506, there is created the position of secretary for that judge. The judge shall select a suitable person to fill the position of secretary and that person shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, as is provided by law for the secretary of the other judges in the district. The secretary shall perform the duties assigned by the judge.
    1. It is the responsibility of the counties comprising the judicial district to provide a judge elected pursuant to § 16-2-506 with sufficient space and facilities in which to conduct the business and duties of the court.
    2. Each county shall establish a court security committee composed of the county mayor, sheriff, district attorney general, the presiding judge of the judicial district and a court clerk from the county to be designated by the presiding judge, for the purpose of examining the space and facilities to determine the security needs of the courtrooms in the county in order to provide safe and secure facilities.
    3. Upon completion of the examination of security needs, the following procedure shall be followed:
      1. The administrative office of the courts shall distribute to each court security committee a copy of the minimum security standards as adopted by the Tennessee judicial conference, and each committee shall review and consider these standards in determining court security needs.
      2. No later than May 15 each year, the court security committee shall report its findings to the county legislative body and the administrative office of the courts.
      3. The county legislative body shall review and consider the recommendations of the court security committee in the preparation of each fiscal year budget.
      4. No later than December 1 each year, the county legislative body shall report to the administrative office of the courts any action taken to meet the security needs.
      5. No later than January 15 each year, the administrative office of the courts shall report to the general assembly on the compliance by each county government with the security needs established by the court security committee.
    4. Any recommendation by the court security committee requiring county expenditures shall be subject to approval of the county legislative body.
  3. Any person who seeks election to the office of circuit court judge, criminal court judge, law and equity court judge or chancellor, whether the judgeship is created by this part or was in existence on April 1, 1984, shall qualify as provided by law with the various election commissions in the counties comprising the judicial district in which the person seeks election. At the time of qualification, the person shall designate to each such commission the court and part of the court, if any, to which that person seeks election. If properly qualified, the names of all of the judicial candidates shall appear on the official ballot by the court and part of court, if any, previously designated and the candidate who shall receive the highest number of votes cast for judge of each part of each court shall be declared elected.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 5; 1993, ch. 506, §§ 1, 2; 1995, ch. 225, § 1; 2001, ch. 268, § 1; 2003, ch. 90, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. The Courtroom Security Act of 1995 is codified as subdivisions (d)(2)-(4).

Acts 2003, ch. 90, § 2, directed the code commission to change all references from “county executive” to “county mayor” and to include all such changes in supplements and replacement volumes for the Tennessee Code Annotated.

Attorney General Opinions. Funding for local court security committee, OAG 96-085 (7/2/96).

County legislative bodies' responsibility to provide court facilities, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

Even though T.C.A. § 16-2-505(d) does not expressly mention general sessions courts, the statute applies by necessary implication to general sessions courts to the extent that security in those facilities affects security in facilities provided circuit and chancery court judges, for example, when general sessions court is conducted in the same building as the circuit and chancery courts, OAG 02-052 (4/24/02).

Although T.C.A. § 16-2-505(d)(2) does not expressly authorize the court security committee to adopt any measures with regard to courthouse security, it is reasonable to infer that the committee may put into effect security measures affecting the security of space and facilities provided to state trial judges, so long as these measures do not require county expenditures; these measures may affect general sessions courtrooms and personnel, as well as the personnel of other offices located in the courthouse, if the measures are reasonably related to ensuring security of space and facilities provided to state trial judges, OAG 02-052 (4/24/02).

The court security committee has no authority to impose a monetary or other penalty for failure to comply with valid court security measures; however, subject to the direction of the county commission, the sheriff may exclude individuals from the courthouse who refuse to comply with reasonable security procedures, OAG 02-052 (4/24/02).

T.C.A. § 16-2-505(d)(2) is constitutional, OAG 02-052 (4/24/02).

Carrying of firearms into rooms where judicial proceedings are in progress; establishment of security committee for determining security needs of courtrooms; security training of court officers.  OAG 12-32, 2012 Tenn. AG LEXIS 32 (3/9/12).

County courthouse security and dress rules.  OAG 12-107, 2012 Tenn. AG LEXIS 111 (11/26/12).

16-2-506. Establishment of judicial districts — Assistant district attorneys general — Criminal investigators — Equity and law courts — Chancery courts.

The state is divided into thirty-two (32) judicial districts composed as follows:

    1. The first judicial district consists of the counties of Carter, Johnson, Unicoi and Washington. The four (4) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in those counties shall continue to serve the first judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1988, the qualified voters of the first judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512;
    2. The district attorney general of the first judicial district is entitled to nine (9) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The second judicial district consists of the county of Sullivan. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the second judicial district in their respective capacities. Effective September 1, 1984, the law and equity court currently located in Sullivan County shall become a chancery court for the second judicial district and the current law and equity judge shall become a chancellor who on such date shall possess the same jurisdiction, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for chancellors. In 1984, the qualified voters of the second judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part II of the circuit court of such district;
    2. The district attorney general of the second judicial district is entitled to eight (8) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The third judicial district consists of the counties of Greene, Hamblen, Hancock and Hawkins. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the third judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the third judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512. In 1990, the qualified voters of the third judicial district shall elect an additional circuit court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part III of the circuit court of such district;
    2. The district attorney general of the third judicial district is entitled to nine (9) full-time assistant district attorney general positions and three (3) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The fourth judicial district consists of the counties of Cocke, Grainger, Jefferson and Sevier. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the fourth judicial district in their respective capacities. Notwithstanding any other provision of law or this part to the contrary, the chancellor currently serving in the fourth judicial district shall also serve the fifth judicial district. As long as the chancellor for the fourth judicial district also serves the fifth judicial district, such chancellor shall be elected by the qualified voters of both such districts and may reside in either district. In 1990, the qualified voters of the fourth judicial district shall elect an additional circuit court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part III of the circuit court of such district. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the fourth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the fourth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
    2. The district attorney general of the fourth judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The fifth judicial district consists of the county of Blount. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the fifth judicial district in their respective capacities;
    2. The district attorney general of the fifth judicial district is entitled to five (5) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The sixth judicial district shall consist of the county of Knox. The nine (9) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the sixth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the sixth judicial district shall elect an additional chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part III of the chancery court of such district;
    2. The district attorney general of the sixth judicial district is entitled to sixteen (16) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The seventh judicial district consists of the county of Anderson. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the seventh judicial district;
    2. The district attorney general of the seventh judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The eighth judicial district consists of the counties of Campbell, Claiborne, Fentress, Scott and Union. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the eighth judicial district in their respective capacities;
    2. The district attorney general of the eighth judicial district is entitled to six (6) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The ninth judicial district consists of the counties of Loudon, Meigs, Morgan and Roane. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the ninth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the ninth judicial district shall elect a chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part I of the chancery court of such district;
    2. The district attorney general of the ninth judicial district is entitled to five (5) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The tenth judicial district consists of the counties of Bradley, McMinn, Monroe and Polk. The four (4) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the tenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the tenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512;
    2. The district attorney general of the tenth judicial district is entitled to ten (10) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The eleventh judicial district consists of the county of Hamilton. The nine (9) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the eleventh judicial district in their respective capacities;
    2. The district attorney general of the eleventh judicial district is entitled to seventeen (17) assistant district attorney general positions and four (4) criminal investigator positions;
      1. The twelfth judicial district consists of the counties of Bledsoe, Franklin, Grundy, Marion, Rhea and Sequatchie. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twelfth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the twelfth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve part III of the circuit court of such district;
      2. Notwithstanding any other provision of this part to the contrary, from September 1, 1984 until September 1, 1990, the chancellor currently residing in the twelfth judicial district shall also serve as chancellor for Coffee and Warren counties in the fourteenth and thirty-first judicial districts, respectively;
    1. The district attorney general of the twelfth judicial district is entitled to eight (8) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The thirteenth judicial district consists of the counties of Clay, Cumberland, DeKalb, Overton, Pickett, Putnam and White. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the thirteenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the thirteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part II of the circuit court of such district. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created a criminal court in the thirteenth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the thirteenth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the criminal court created by this section for an eight-year term;
    2. The district attorney general of the thirteenth judicial district is entitled to eight (8) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The fourteenth judicial district consists of the county of Coffee. The incumbent trial court judge and district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the fourteenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1990, the qualified voters of the fourteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512. The additional judge elected in 1990 shall serve the fourteenth judicial district exclusively and the judge currently residing in such district shall also have the responsibility and duty to assist the judge of the thirty-first judicial district with the judge's docket by interchange;
    2. The district attorney general of the fourteenth judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The fifteenth judicial district consists of the counties of Jackson, Macon, Smith, Trousdale and Wilson. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the fifteenth judicial district. The present criminal court judge shall continue to serve as judge of the criminal court; the present chancellor shall continue to serve as judge of the chancery court; and the present circuit judge shall continue to serve as judge of the circuit court. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the fifteenth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the fifteenth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
    2. The district attorney general of the fifteenth judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
      1. The sixteenth judicial district consists of the counties of Cannon and Rutherford. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the sixteenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the sixteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part II of the circuit court of such district;
      2. On May 31, 1993, there is created an additional court in the sixteenth judicial district with the type of such court, type of judge to preside over such court and part of court being designated as provided in § 16-2-512. The position of judge or chancellor for such court is also created on such date and such position shall be filled by appointment as provided by law. The person so appointed shall serve until September 1, 1994, or until such person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 1994 general election, the qualified voters of the sixteenth judicial district shall elect a judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court created by subdivision (16)(A)(ii);
      3. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the sixteenth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the sixteenth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
      4. Effective September 1, 2018, there is created an additional trial court in the sixteenth judicial district. The type of court, type of judge to preside over the court, and part of court shall be designated as provided in § 16-2-512. The governor shall appoint a person to serve as an additional judge or chancellor, and the person so appointed shall serve in that capacity until September 1, 2020, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2020 general election, the qualified voters of the sixteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor to serve until September 1, 2022, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2022 general election, and every eight (8) years thereafter, the qualified voters of the sixteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor for a full eight-year term;
    1. The district attorney general of the sixteenth judicial district is entitled to ten (10) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The seventeenth judicial district consists of the counties of Bedford, Lincoln, Marshall and Moore. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the seventeenth judicial district in their respective capacities. Effective September 1, 1989, there is created the position of circuit court judge to serve part II of the circuit court of the seventeenth judicial district. Such position shall be filled by appointment of the governor as provided by law and the person so appointed shall serve until September 1, 1990, or until such person's successor is elected and qualified. In 1990, the qualified voters of the seventeenth judicial district shall elect a circuit court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve part II of the circuit court of such district. The judge of part II of such circuit court may be a resident of any county within the seventeenth judicial district and shall serve the entire district;
    2. The district attorney general of the seventeenth judicial district is entitled to five (5) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
      1. The eighteenth judicial district consists of the county of Sumner. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the eighteenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the eighteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512;
      2. Notwithstanding any other provision of this part to the contrary, from September 1, 1984 until September 1, 1990, the circuit court judge currently residing in the eighteenth judicial district shall also serve the nineteenth judicial district;
    1. The district attorney general of the eighteenth judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
      1. The nineteenth judicial district consists of the counties of Montgomery and Robertson. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the nineteenth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the nineteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part I of the circuit court of such district;
      2. Notwithstanding any other provision of this part to the contrary, from September 1, 1984 until September 1, 1988, the chancellor currently residing in the nineteenth judicial district shall also serve as chancellor for Stewart County in the twenty-third judicial district;
      3. The circuit court judge elected in 1984 to serve part I of the circuit court of the nineteenth judicial district shall be a resident of Robertson County but shall serve the entire district. In any subsequent election for part I of such circuit court, the judge may be a resident of any county within the district. Notwithstanding any other provision of this part to the contrary, from September 1, 1984 until September 1, 1986, the circuit judge for the nineteenth judicial district is authorized to sit by interchange in the eighteenth judicial district when requested to do so by the judges of the eighteenth judicial district. During such two-year period, nothing other than the agreement of the judges involved is necessary to effectuate such an interchange;
      4. Effective September 1, 1984, the law and equity court currently located in Montgomery County shall become part II of the circuit court of the nineteenth judicial district and the current law and equity judge shall become judge of part II of such circuit court. On such date, such law and equity judge shall possess the same jurisdiction, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for circuit court judges;
      5. In 1990, the qualified voters of the nineteenth judicial district shall elect an additional circuit court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part III of the circuit court of such district;
      6. Effective September 1, 2015, there is created in the nineteenth judicial district one (1) additional circuit court to be designated as division IV. The governor shall appoint a person to serve as judge of division IV of the circuit court. The person so appointed shall serve in such capacity until September 1, 2016, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2016 general election, the qualified voters of the nineteenth judicial district shall elect, in accordance with § 16-2-505, one (1) person to serve as judge of division IV of the circuit court. The person so elected at the August 2016 general election shall hold office until September 1, 2022, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. Thereafter, the judge of division IV of the circuit court shall be elected for a full eight-year term;
      7. Effective September 1, 2018, there is created an additional trial court in the nineteenth judicial district. The type of court, type of judge to preside over the court, and part of court shall be designated as provided in § 16-2-512. The governor shall appoint a person to serve as an additional judge or chancellor, and the person so appointed shall serve in that capacity until September 1, 2020, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2020 general election, the qualified voters of the nineteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor to serve until September 1, 2022, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2022 general election, and every eight (8) years thereafter, the qualified voters of the nineteenth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor for a full eight-year term;
    1. The district attorney general of the nineteenth judicial district is entitled to ten (10) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
      1. The twentieth judicial district consists of the county of Davidson. The twelve (12) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the twentieth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1990, the qualified voters of the twentieth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512. In 1998, the qualified voters of the twentieth judicial district shall elect an additional circuit court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve as judge of division VII of the circuit court of such district. In addition to the jurisdiction of a circuit court judge, the judge of division VII shall have concurrent chancery court jurisdiction and exclusive jurisdiction over the probate of wills and the administration of estates, including the estates of decedents and of wards under guardianships and conservatorships. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the twentieth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the twentieth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
      2. Effective September 1, 2003, there is created in the twentieth judicial district one (1) additional chancery court to be designated as division IV and two (2) additional criminal courts to be designated as division V and division VI. The governor shall appoint a person to serve as chancellor of division IV of the chancery court, a person to serve as judge of division V of the criminal court and a person to serve as judge of division VI of the criminal court. The persons so appointed shall serve in such capacity until September 1, 2004, or until their successors are elected and qualified. At the August 2004 general election, the qualified voters of the twentieth judicial district shall elect, in accordance with § 16-2-505, one (1) person to serve as chancellor of division IV of the chancery court, one (1) person to serve as judge of division V of the criminal court and one (1) person to serve as judge of division VI of the criminal court. The persons so elected at the August 2004 election shall hold office until September 1, 2006, and until their successors are elected and qualified. Thereafter, the chancellor and judges shall be elected for full eight-year terms;
    1. The district attorney general of the twentieth judicial district is entitled to thirty (30) assistant district attorney general positions and five (5) criminal investigator positions;
      1. Until September 1, 2022, the twenty-first judicial district consists of the counties of Hickman, Lewis, Perry and Williamson. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-first judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1986, the qualified voters of the twenty-first judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512. Effective January 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the twenty-first judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the twenty-first district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
      2. Effective September 1, 2018, there is created an additional trial court in the twenty-first judicial district. The type of court, type of judge to preside over the court, and part of court shall be designated as provided in § 16-2-512. The governor shall appoint a person to serve as an additional judge or chancellor, and the person so appointed shall serve in that capacity until September 1, 2020, or until the person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2020 general election, the qualified voters of the twenty-first judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor to serve until September 1, 2022, at which time the additional trial court shall be transferred to the newly created thirty-second judicial district and presided over by a trial court judge elected by voters of the thirty-second judicial district at the August 2022 general election;
      3. It is the intent of the general assembly by adding an additional trial court in the twenty-first judicial district that the interests of public access to the courts and economy of judicial travel are best served by the presiding judge designating the new trial court created by subdivision (21)(A)(ii) to serve Hickman, Lewis, and Perry counties prior to being transferred to the thirty-second judicial district. Unless otherwise designated by the presiding judge to effectuate the duties enumerated in § 16-2-509(b), the remaining judges shall serve Williamson County;
      1. Effective September 1, 2022, the twenty-first judicial district consists of the county of Williamson. Except as provided in subdivision (21)(A)(iii), the incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in the county shall continue to serve the twenty-first judicial district in their respective capacities until September 1, 2022. At the August 2022 general election, and every eight (8) years thereafter, the qualified voters of Williamson County shall elect four (4) trial court judges to fill the positions created by subdivision (21)(A)(i) for a full eight-year term;
      2. Effective September 1, 2022, the additional trial court created by subdivision (21)(A)(ii) shall be transferred to the thirty-second judicial district;
    1. The district attorney general of the twenty-first judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions, one (1) criminal investigator position, and one (1) additional assistant district attorney general position; provided, that the funding for such additional assistant district attorney general position is provided exclusively by the municipal and county governments that comprise the twenty-first judicial district;
    1. The twenty-second judicial district consists of the counties of Giles, Lawrence, Maury and Wayne. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-second judicial district in their respective capacities. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the twenty-second judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the twenty-second judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-second judicial district is entitled to eight (8) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions;
    1. The twenty-third judicial district consists of the counties of Cheatham, Dickson, Houston, Humphreys and Stewart. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-third judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1988, the qualified voters of the twenty-third judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-third judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and two (2) criminal investigator positions. The fifth assistant district attorney general position shall not be filled unless full funding for the position is secured from local, federal or other funding sources apart from state appropriations;
    1. The twenty-fourth judicial district consists of the counties of Benton, Carroll, Decatur, Hardin and Henry. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-fourth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the twenty-fourth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part II of the circuit court of such district;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-fourth judicial district is entitled to five (5) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The twenty-fifth judicial district consists of the counties of Fayette, Hardeman, Lauderdale, McNairy and Tipton. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-fifth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1990, the qualified voters of the twenty-fifth judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve the court and part of court designated pursuant to § 16-2-512;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-fifth judicial district is entitled to nine (9) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The twenty-sixth judicial district consists of the counties of Chester, Henderson and Madison. The three (3) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-sixth judicial district in their respective capacities. Effective September 1, 1998, there is created an additional circuit court in the twenty-sixth judicial district. At the August 1998 general election, the qualified voters of the twenty-sixth judicial district shall elect a person in accordance with § 16-2-505, to serve as judge of the circuit court created by this section for an eight-year term;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-sixth judicial district is entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    1. The twenty-seventh judicial district consists of the counties of Obion and Weakley. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-seventh judicial district in their respective capacities;
    2. The district attorney general of the twenty-seventh judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
      1. The twenty-eighth judicial district consists of the counties of Crockett, Gibson and Haywood. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-eighth judicial district in their respective capacities;
      2. Effective September 1, 1984, the law and equity court currently located in Gibson County shall become a chancery court for the twenty-eighth judicial district and the current law and equity judge shall become a chancellor who on such date shall possess the same jurisdiction, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for chancellors;
    1. The district attorney general of the twenty-eighth judicial district is entitled to five (5) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
      1. The twenty-ninth judicial district consists of the counties of Dyer and Lake. The two (2) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the twenty-ninth judicial district in their respective capacities. Juvenile jurisdiction in Dyer County shall be in the court of general sessions as provided in §§ 37-1-102 and 37-1-203, unless such jurisdiction is vested in another court by law or private act;
      2. Effective April 15, 1986, part II of the circuit court of the twenty-ninth judicial district shall become part I of the chancery court of such district and the current judge of part II of such circuit court shall become chancellor of part I of the chancery court of such district. On such date, such chancellor shall possess the same jurisdiction, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for chancellors. This chancellor shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit court of this district;
    1. The district attorney general of the twenty-ninth judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
    2. Effective September 1, 1984, there is created the position of secretary for the chancellor of part I of the chancery court of the twenty-ninth judicial district and such chancellor is authorized to employ a person to fill such position in accordance with § 16-2-505(c);
    1. The thirtieth judicial district is composed of the county of Shelby. The nineteen (19) incumbent trial court judges and the district attorney general currently residing in such county shall continue to serve the thirtieth judicial district in their respective capacities. In 1984, the qualified voters of the thirtieth judicial district shall elect an additional judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part IX of the circuit court of such district. In 1990, the qualified voters of the thirtieth judicial district shall elect one (1) additional criminal court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve part IX of the criminal court of such district. The board of commissioners of Shelby County shall furnish all books other than those provided by the administrative director of the courts and other necessary supplies for the judge to be elected in 1990. On June 6, 1995, there is created an additional criminal court in the thirtieth judicial district. The court shall be Part X of the criminal court of such district. The position shall be filled by appointment as provided by law. The person so appointed shall serve until September 1, 1996, or until such person's successor is elected and qualified. At the August 1996 general election, the qualified voters of the thirtieth judicial district shall elect a criminal court judge in accordance with § 16-2-505 to serve Part X of the court;
    2. The district attorney general of the thirtieth judicial district is entitled to forty-four (44) assistant district attorney general positions and thirteen (13) criminal investigator positions; and
    1. The thirty-first judicial district consists of the counties of Van Buren and Warren. The incumbent trial court judge currently residing in such counties shall continue to serve the thirty-first judicial district. The judge residing in the thirty-first judicial district shall also have the responsibility and duty to assist the judge of the fourteenth judicial district by interchange with such judge's docket;
      1. Effective September 1, 1990, there is created the position of district attorney general for the thirty-first judicial district. At the regular August election in 1990, the qualified voters of the thirty-first judicial district shall elect a person to the position of district attorney general for a full eight-year term. The person elected to such position shall possess the same qualifications, powers and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other district attorneys general;
      2. Effective July 1, 1989, there are created two (2) secretarial positions for the district attorney general of the thirty-first judicial district. Such district attorney general shall select a suitable person to fill one (1) position and such person shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, as is provided by law for the secretary of other district attorneys general. The secretary shall perform such duties as may be assigned by such district attorney general. Such district attorney general shall transfer all authority and funding concerning the other secretarial position to the district attorney general for the fourth judicial district who shall select a suitable person to fill the other position, and such person shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, as is provided by law for the secretary of other district attorneys general. The secretary shall perform such duties as may be assigned by the district attorney general for the fourth judicial district;
      3. The district attorney general of the thirty-first judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position;
      4. On September 1, 1990, the office space and all state-owned furniture, equipment, supplies, books and other such office property located in the Warren County courthouse and currently being used by the district attorney general of the fourteenth judicial district, or by one (1) of the district attorney general's assistants or investigators, shall be transferred for the use of the district attorney of the thirty-first judicial district. On and after such date, all such office space and other office property located in the Warren County courthouse shall become the space for and property of the office of district attorney general for the thirty-first judicial district. Nothing contained herein shall be construed as prohibiting such district attorney general from also establishing an office in the other county comprising the thirty-first judicial district;
      5. By September 1, 1990, all records, files, papers and other official documents pertaining to any pending or completed case arising out of any of the counties comprising the thirty-first judicial district shall be transferred to and become the property of the office of district attorney general for the thirty-first judicial district;
      6. Notwithstanding any other law or this subdivision (31) to the contrary, if a vacancy occurs in the office of the district attorney general currently serving the thirty-first judicial district, the governor shall appoint a suitable person to serve as district attorney general for such district. The person so appointed shall possess all of the qualifications required by law for district attorneys general and shall serve until September 1, 1990, or until the district attorney general to be elected by the voters of the thirty-first judicial district pursuant to this subdivision (31)(B) is elected and qualified; and
    1. Effective September 1, 2022, the thirty-second judicial district consists of the counties of Hickman, Lewis, and Perry. The incumbent trial court judge elected pursuant to subdivision (21)(A)(ii) shall continue to serve the twenty-first judicial district until September 1, 2022, at which time the additional trial court created by subdivision (21)(A)(ii) shall be transferred to the thirty-second judicial district and presided over by a trial court judge to be elected by voters of the thirty-second judicial district at the August 2022 general election. Every eight (8) years thereafter, the qualified voters of the thirty-second judicial district shall elect a judge or chancellor for a full eight-year term;
      1. Effective September 1, 2022, there is created the position of district attorney general for the thirty-second judicial district. At the regular August election in 2022, the qualified voters of the thirty-second judicial district shall elect a person to the position of district attorney general for a full eight-year term. The person elected to such position shall possess the same qualifications, powers, and duties and shall receive the same compensation, payable in the same manner, benefits, emoluments, and dignity of office as is required or provided by law for other district attorneys general;
      2. The district attorney general of the thirty-second judicial district is entitled to three (3) assistant district attorney general positions, one (1) administrative assistant position, two (2) secretary positions, one (1) criminal investigator position, and two (2) victim-witness coordinator positions;
      3. On September 1, 2022, the office space and all state-owned furniture, equipment, supplies, books, and other such office property located in the Centerville or Hohenwald offices of the district attorney general of the twenty-first district and currently being used by the district attorney general of the twenty-first judicial district, or by one (1) of the district attorney general's assistants or investigators, shall be transferred for the use of the district attorney of the thirty-second judicial district. On and after such date, all such office space and other office property located in the Centerville and Hohenwald offices shall become the space for and property of the office of district attorney general for the thirty-second judicial district. Nothing in this subdivision (32)(B)(iii) prohibits the district attorney general from also establishing another office in the thirty-second judicial district; and
      4. By September 1, 2022, all records, files, papers, and other official documents pertaining to any pending or completed case arising out of any of the counties comprising the thirty-second judicial district shall be transferred to and become the property of the office of district attorney general for the thirty-second judicial district.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 6; 1985, ch. 474, § 1; 1986, ch. 746, §§ 1, 2; 1986, ch. 813, § 1; 1988, ch. 725, § 1; 1988, ch. 773, § 1; 1988, ch. 804, § 1; 1989, ch. 118, § 1; 1989, ch. 144, § 1; 1989, ch. 148, § 1; 1989, ch. 529, § 1; 1989, ch. 530, §§ 1, 2; 1989, ch. 586, §§ 1, 2; 1990, ch. 687, § 1; 1990, ch. 842, § 1; 1990, ch. 914, § 1; 1990, ch. 998, § 1; 1990, ch. 1013, § 1; 1990, ch. 1058, §§ 1, 2; 1990, ch. 1064, § 1; 1991, ch. 287, § 1; 1991, ch. 435, § 1; 1991, ch. 474, § 1; 1992, ch. 593, § 1; 1992, ch. 961, § 1; 1993, ch. 66, § 15; 1993, ch. 330, § 1; 1993, ch. 506, § 3; 1994, ch. 540, § 1; 1994, ch. 804, §§ 1, 2; 1994, ch. 937, §§ 2-31; 1994, ch. 949, § 1; Priv. Acts 1995, ch. 62, § 1; Acts 1995, ch. 398, § 1; 1997, ch. 120, § 1; 1997, ch. 450, § 1-8; 1998, ch. 771, §§ 1-25; 1999, ch. 179, § 1; 2001, ch. 361, § 1; 2003, ch. 216, § 1; 2005, ch. 31, §§ 1-23; 2015, ch. 437, § 1; 2018, ch. 974, §§ 1-3; 2020, ch. 530, §§ 1-3.

Code Commission Notes.

Article II, § 24 of the Constitution of Tennessee provides, in part, that:

Any law requiring the expenditure of state funds shall be null and void unless, during the session in which the act receives final passage, an appropriation is made for the estimated first year's funding.

The Tennessee code commission has been advised by the commissioner of finance and administration that the necessary first year's funding was not appropriated during the 1991 regular session for the following public acts which would have amended this section: Acts 1991, ch. 286, § 1; ch. 375, § 1; ch. 387, § 1; ch. 404, § 1; ch. 408, § 1; ch. 409, § 1; ch. 437, § 1; and ch. 478, § 1.

The code commission was directed by Acts 1991, ch. 509, § 54 to not codify acts which did not receive first year's funding. Accordingly, Acts 1991, ch. 286, § 1; ch. 375, § 1; ch. 387, § 1; ch. 404, § 1; ch. 408, § 1; ch. 409, § 1; ch. 437, § 1; and ch. 478, § 1, which would have amended this section, have not been codified. If the foregoing chapters had been codified, this section would have been amended as follows:

Chapter 286, § 1 would have substituted the following for the present text of (1)(B): “The district attorney general of the first judicial district shall be entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and one (1) criminal investigator position.” This amendment would have taken effect July 1, 1991.

Chapter 375, § 1 would have added the following in (8)(B): “Effective July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the eighth judicial district shall be entitled to an additional criminal investigator position. The district attorney general for such district shall appoint a suitable person to such position to serve at the pleasure of such district attorney general. The criminal investigator so appointed shall have the same power and authority as deputies of the county sheriff, and shall perform such duties and functions as the district attorney general may require. The criminal investigator shall be compensated as provided by law.”

Chapter 387, § 1 would have substituted the following for the present text of (3)(B): “The district attorney general of the third judicial district shall be entitled to seven (7) assistant district attorney general positions and three (3) criminal investigator positions. One (1) of the assistant district attorney general positions shall be a part-time position, and shall be filled only if funding for the position is available through the District Attorneys General Fiscal Affairs Act.” This amendment would have taken effect July 1, 1991.

Chapter 404, § 1 would have added the following in (13)(B): “Effective July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the thirteenth judicial district shall be entitled to an additional assistant district attorney general position to be appointed and who shall have the same qualifications and duties as is provided in Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 16-2-508.”

Chapter 408, § 1 would have added the following in (15)(B): “On July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the fifteenth judicial district shall be entitled to one (1) additional assistant district attorney general position.”

Chapter 409, § 1 would have added the following as (31)(B)(x): “On July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the thirty-first (31st) judicial district shall be entitled to an additional assistant district attorney general position.”

Chapter 437, § 1 would have added the following in (18)(B): “On July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the eighteenth judicial district shall be entitled to an additional assistant district attorney general position.”

Chapter 478, § 1 would have added the following in (10)(B): “On July 1, 1991, the district attorney general of the 10th judicial district shall be entitled to one (1) additional criminal investigator.”

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1988, ch. 773, §§ 2, 3 provided that the additional criminal investigator for the tenth judicial district, provided for by the 1988 amendment to this section, shall have the same power and authority as deputies of the county sheriffs, shall perform such duties and functions as the district attorney general may require, and shall be compensated as provided for by the general law of this state.

Acts 1989, ch. 586, § 2 provided that authority and funding concerning a secretarial position created for the 31st judicial district shall be transferred to the district attorney general for the 4th judicial district, who shall select the person to fill such secretarial position.

Acts 1989, ch. 586, § 4 provided that for the purpose of qualifying and seeking election to the position of district attorney general for the thirty-first judicial district created by that act and for the purpose of transferring documents pertaining to such district, the amendment by that act took effect June 13, 1989. For all other purposes, § 4 provided that the amendment by ch. 586 take effect September 1, 1990.

Acts 1990, ch. 998, § 2 provided that the amendment by that act shall not be construed to be an appropriation of funds and no funds shall be obligated or expended pursuant to the second sentence in subdivision (20)(B) unless such funds are specifically appropriated by the general appropriations act.

Acts 1990, ch. 1013, § 2 provided that no state funds in excess of one hundred eighty-five thousand dollars ($185,000) shall be obligated or expended to implement the provisions of ch. 1013.

Acts 1990, ch. 1064, § 2 provided that no state funds in excess of one hundred eighty-five thousand dollars ($185,000) shall be obligated or expended to implement the provisions of ch. 1064.

Acts 1991, ch. 27 created five additional assistant district attorneys general, two criminal investigators and two secretaries to the staff of the district attorney general for the sixth judicial district, and provided for their appointment, compensation and duties.

Acts 1994, ch. 937, § 32 provided that the provisions of that act, which amended this section and enacted § 16-2-519, shall take effect only to the extent funding is provided specifically for its implementation in the General Appropriations Act. To the extent such funding is insufficient to fully implement the provisions of the act, the district attorneys general conference and the commissioner of finance and administration shall determine which provisions of the act shall be implemented. Section 32 further directed the code commission to codify only those provisions of the act deemed to be funded by the district attorneys general conference as provided above.

Acts 2003, ch. 216, § 2 provided that the provisions of the act shall have no effect, and no appointments shall be made pursuant to § 3 of the act, unless funds are appropriated in the 2003-2004 appropriations act to fund the estimated first year's costs of any positions, and associated costs, authorized by this act. Funding was provided by Acts 2003, ch. 356, § 12, item 7.

Acts 2003, ch. 216, § 3 provided that for the purpose of the governor appointing persons to serve as chancellor and judge of the three (3) judicial positions created by the amendment by the act, the act shall take effect June 2, 2003.

Acts 2020, ch. 530, § 5 provided: that the act, which amended this section,  shall not be construed to limit, terminate, or otherwise affect the term or future terms of office of any circuit court clerk, criminal court clerk, or clerk and master, subject to the residence requirement found in § 18-1-102. All such incumbents shall continue in office until the expiration of their respective terms of office and shall be eligible for reelection or reappointment. Nothing in this act shall be construed to require, permit, or authorize the consolidation of the offices of clerk and master, circuit court clerk, or criminal court clerk or to place any clerk in a position of dominance over any other clerk.

Acts 2020, ch. 530, § 6 provided:

“(a)  All process issued after September 1, 2022, shall be returnable at the times and places fixed by local court rules promulgated in accordance with this act. All bonds and undertakings executed after September 1, 2022, shall be governed by local court rules, insofar as to appearance dates and other conditions relating to time and place.

“(b)  All cases, both civil and criminal except those that have previously been heard and taken under advisement, pending in any court in the twenty-first judicial district prior to September 1, 2022, shall as of that date be heard and determined in the appropriate court by the appropriate judge.

“(c)  Notwithstanding Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 16, Chapter 2, to the contrary, nothing in this act shall be construed to repeal, amend, or affect in any manner any jurisdiction granted to any local court by any public or private law.”

Amendments. The 2015 amendment added (19)(A)(vi).

The 2018 amendment added (16)(A)(iv), (19)(A)(vii), (21)(A)(ii) and (21)(A)(iii).

The 2020 amendment substituted “thirty-two (32)” for “thirty-one (31)” in the introductory language;  substituted “Until September 1, 2022, the” for “The” in (21)(A)(i); in the last sentence of (21)(A)(ii), substituted “at which time the additional trial court shall be transferred to the newly created thirty-second judicial district and presided over by a trial court judge elected by voters of the thirty-second judicial district at the August 2022” for “or until the person’s successor is elected and qualified. At the August 2022”, and deleted “and every eight (8) years thereafter, the qualified voters of the thirty-first judicial district shall elect an additional judge or chancellor for a full eight-year term;” following “general election”; at the end of the first sentence of (21)(A)(iii), added “, prior to being transferred to the thirty-second judicial district”; redesignated former (21)(B) as (21)(C); added (21)(B)(i) and (21)(B)(ii); and added (32).

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 437, § 2. May 18, 2015.

Acts 2018, ch. 974, § 5. May 21, 2018.

Acts 2020, ch. 530, § 7. March 10, 2020.

Cross-References. Criminal investigators and assistant district attorneys general, compensation, title 8, ch. 7, part 2.

District attorneys general, title 8, ch. 7, part 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.10.

Law Reviews.

Civil Procedure — Flowers v. Dyer County: The Death of the Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction, 23 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 409 (1993).

What Price is Justice? Adequate funding for judicial system needs to be top priority of upcoming General Assembly (W. Andy Hardin), 37 No. 2 Tenn. B.J. 23 (2001).

Attorney General Opinions. Constitutionality, judges and district attorneys for certain judicial districts, OAG 87-163 (10/23/87).

County legislative bodies' responsibility to provide court facilities, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

Cited: Minor v. Williams, 640 F. Supp. 360, 1985 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 15368 (M.D. Tenn. 1985); Flowers v. Dyer County, 830 S.W.2d 51, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 491 (Tenn. 1992); Woods v. MTC Mgmt., 967 S.W.2d 800, 1998 Tenn. LEXIS 213 (Tenn. 1998); Cousin v. Sundquist, 145 F.3d 818, 1998 FED App. 171P, 1998 U.S. App. LEXIS 10796 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1998), cert. denied, 525 U.S. 1138, 119 S. Ct. 1026, 143 L. Ed. 2d 37, 1999 U.S. LEXIS 1020 (U.S. Feb. 22, 1999); Williams v. City of Milan, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 67 (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 16, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

Where defendant alleged that plaintiffs did not prove the existence of the chancery court in which the action was brought, the court of appeals took judicial notice of the constitutional provision creating chancery courts and the pertinent statute designating the county as a judicial district. Industrial Dev. Bd. v. Hancock, 901 S.W.2d 382, 1995 Tenn. App. LEXIS 92 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1995).

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

16-2-507. Incumbent judges — Cooperation between judges.

  1. All incumbent trial court judges shall hold office in and serve the judicial district of which they have been designated by § 16-2-506.
  2. It is the affirmative duty of every trial court judge to fully cooperate with the presiding judge and the other judges in the district.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 7.

Attorney General Opinions. Distribution of court space by presiding judge, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

16-2-508. District attorneys general — Powers and duties — Assistant district attorneys general — Criminal investigators — Other positions.

  1. All incumbent district attorneys general shall hold office in and serve the judicial district to which they are assigned by § 16-2-506. The district attorneys general shall exercise and possess the jurisdiction, powers and duties within the judicial districts created by this part as are conferred by law upon district attorneys general. This part shall not be construed to make any reduction in the staff of any district attorney general, and any legislative act that creates assistant district attorney general, criminal investigator or other positions, or that otherwise affects or involves the office of district attorney general in a particular judicial district or attorney's district as it is presently numbered or identified is made applicable to the judicial district to which the present district attorney general is assigned by this part. Nothing in this part shall be construed as affecting a county's authority to provide staff and other resources to the district attorney general of the district in which the county is located.
  2. Except in the judicial districts comprised of the urban counties of Shelby, Davidson, Knox, Hamilton and Sullivan, the district attorney general of each judicial district shall be entitled to at least one (1) assistant district attorney general position for each trial court judge in the judicial district to which the district attorney general is assigned, as well as either one (1) additional assistant district attorney general position if the judicial district is comprised of four (4) or more counties, or two (2) additional assistant district attorney general positions if the judicial district is comprised of more than six (6) counties. If an additional trial court judge is added to a judicial district, and that district does not already have sufficient assistant district attorney general positions to satisfy the formula set out in this subsection (b), an additional assistant district attorney general position shall be created for that district upon the effective date of the creation of the new judicial position.
  3. [Deleted by 2013 amendment, effective March 20, 2013.]
  4. The district attorney general of any judicial district in which an assistant district attorney general position is created by this part shall appoint a suitable person to serve as assistant district attorney general. The person so appointed shall serve at the pleasure of the district attorney general, and shall perform the duties the district attorney general requires. Each person so appointed shall be compensated as provided for by general law.
  5. Except for the assistant district attorney general position created annually by former subsection (c) and those created when, pursuant to § 16-2-506, an additional trial court judge is elected in 1986, 1988 or 1990, the number of such assistant positions set out in § 16-2-506 shall be the total number of positions to which the corresponding district attorney general is entitled, and nothing in this section shall be construed as creating any assistant positions in excess of such number.
    1. The district attorneys general shall appoint suitable individuals to the position of criminal investigator. The individuals so appointed shall perform such duties as the district attorney general may direct, and shall serve at the pleasure of the district attorney general.
    2. In carrying out the duties of the criminal investigator's office, each of the criminal investigators shall possess the same power and authority as deputies of the county sheriffs or if the judicial district includes a metropolitan form of government then their power and authority shall include all police powers of law enforcement officers in that area metropolitan government. The compensation of such investigators shall be as provided by general law.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 8; 1986, ch. 813, §§ 2, 3; 1989, ch. 144, § 2; 1996, ch. 996, § 2; 2013, ch. 21, § 2; 2013, ch. 68, § 3.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1986, ch. 813 created criminal investigator positions in the 1st, 5th, 15th, 17th, 19th, 23rd, 24th, 25th and 26th judicial districts.

Acts 1996, ch. 996, §  2 provided that the name “executive director of the district attorneys general conference” be substituted for “executive secretary to the district attorneys general conference”.

Subsection (e) refers to former subsection (c), which was deleted by Acts 2013, ch. 21, § 2, effective March 20, 2013, and which read: “(c)  The district attorneys general of the judicial districts comprising the urban counties of Shelby, Davidson, Knox, Hamilton and Sullivan shall retain their present number of assistant district attorneys general, except that on September 1, 1985, and on each successive September 1 through 1990, one (1) additional assistant district attorney general position shall be created, and assigned to the urban district then having the highest ratio of population to assistant district attorneys general. On August 1, 1985, through August 1, 1990, the office of local government of the office of the comptroller of the treasury shall determine which of the five (5) urban judicial districts listed above has the highest ratio of population to assistant district attorney general positions. The office of local government shall notify the executive director of the district attorneys general conference who shall notify the district attorney general of the district with the highest ratio that effective September 1, of that year the district attorney general is entitled to employ one (1) additional assistant district attorney general.”

Amendments. The 2013 amendment by ch. 21 deleted (c) which read: “The district attorneys general of the judicial districts comprising the urban counties of Shelby, Davidson, Knox, Hamilton and Sullivan shall retain their present number of assistant district attorneys general, except that on September 1, 1985, and on each successive September 1 through 1990, one (1) additional assistant district attorney general position shall be created, and assigned to the urban district then having the highest ratio of population to assistant district attorneys general. On August 1, 1985, through August 1, 1990, the office of local government of the office of the comptroller of the treasury shall determine which of the five (5) urban judicial districts listed above has the highest ratio of population to assistant district attorney general positions. The office of local government shall notify the executive director of the district attorneys general conference who shall notify the district attorney general of the district with the highest ratio that effective September 1, of that year the district attorney general is entitled to employ one (1) additional assistant district attorney general.”

The 2013 amendment by ch. 68 rewrote (f) which read: “(f)(1) The district attorney general for the first, fifth, fifteenth, seventeenth, nineteenth, twenty-third, twenty-fourth, twenty-fifth and twenty-sixth districts shall appoint a suitable person to the position of criminal investigator. The person so appointed shall perform the duties that the district attorney general directs, and shall serve at the pleasure of the district attorney general.“(2) In carrying out the duties of the criminal investigator's office, each of the criminal investigators created by Acts 1986, ch. 813, shall possess the same power and authority as deputies of the county sheriffs. The compensation of the investigators shall be as provided by general law.”

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 21, § 4. March 20, 2013.

Acts 2013, ch. 68, § 4. July 1, 2013.

Cross-References. Criminal investigators and assistant district attorneys general, compensation, title 8, ch. 7, part 2.

District attorneys general, title 8, ch. 7, part 1.

16-2-509. Presiding judges.

  1. The judges in each judicial district shall assemble for the purpose of selecting a presiding judge of the district. In August of each year, the judges within each district shall assemble at the call of the presiding judge and select a successor to such presiding judge who shall serve until September 1 of the following year. If upon any selection date the judges in any district fail to choose or are unable to agree upon the selection of a presiding judge, the chief justice of the supreme court shall designate one (1) of their number to serve.
  2. It is the duty of the presiding judge to:
    1. Reduce docket delays and hold congestion to a minimum;
    2. Seek and maintain an equitable distribution of the workload and an equal sharing of the bench and chambers time necessary to dispose of the business of the district;
    3. Promote the orderly and efficient administration of justice within the district; and
    4. Take immediate and affirmative action to correct or alleviate any caseload imbalance, or any condition adversely affecting the administration of justice within the district over which the judge presides.
  3. To effectuate the duties enumerated in subsection (b), the presiding judge may assign cases to judges and chancellors within the district over which the judge presides. In assigning cases, the presiding judge shall, whenever possible and not detrimental to the orderly and efficient administration of justice, give due regard to the court upon which the judge or chancellor serves, the judge's or chancellor's particular background, experience and preference and economy of judicial travel time.
  4. If a presiding judge is unable to correct a caseload imbalance or reduce docket delays utilizing the available judges within the district over which the judge presides, it is the affirmative duty of the presiding judge to contact other presiding judges and request assistance or contact the supreme court and request assistance pursuant to § 16-3-502.
  5. This part shall not be construed as altering or modifying any law concerning interchange by agreement.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 9; 2005, ch. 26, § 1.

Cross-References. Interchange of judges, § 17-2-202.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Rule 11, §§ III, VII of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Tennessee; and in Rule 2, Davidson County Local Rules of Practice, Courts of Record, Twentieth Judicial District of Tennessee.

Attorney General Opinions. Distribution of court space by presiding judge, OAG 99-049 (3/2/99).

Although T.C.A. § 16-2-505(d)(2) does not expressly authorize the court security committee to adopt any measures with regard to courthouse security, it is reasonable to infer that the committee may put into effect security measures affecting the security of space and facilities provided to state trial judges, so long as these measures do not require county expenditures; these measures may affect general sessions courtrooms and personnel, as well as the personnel of other offices located in the courthouse, if the measures are reasonably related to ensuring security of space and facilities provided to state trial judges, OAG 02-052 (4/24/02).

Cited: State Dep't of Children's Servs. v. A.M.H., 198 S.W.3d 757, 2006 Tenn. App. LEXIS 156 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2006).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Appointment of Special Judge.

A trial judge should appoint a clerk and master to act as a special/substitute judge in the trial judge's absence only if the trial judge determines it is not possible either to interchange pursuant to § 17-2-202, or to obtain assistance from another presiding judge or from the Tennessee supreme court pursuant to T.C.A. § 16-2-509(e). Ferrell v. Cigna Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co., 33 S.W.3d 731, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 686 (Tenn. 2000).

In a tax case, a clerk and master lacked authority to enter summary judgment in favor of the Tennessee commissioner of revenue under T.C.A. § 17-2-118(a), (f)(2) (now (f)(1)(B)) because the clerk and master was not appointed or ordered to sit as a judge on the date at issue, and the requirement for exploring interchange was not satisfied where a chancellor was out of town; procedures for appointing a substitute judge were mandatory, and to hold otherwise would have rendered Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 10, Canon 3A and Ferrell v. Cigna Property & Cas. Ins. Co., 33 S.W.3d 731, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 686 (Tenn. 2000), meaningless. Maxwell Med., Inc. v. Chumley, 282 S.W.3d 893, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 542 (Tenn. Ct. App. Sept. 22, 2008).

16-2-510. Holding of court — Terms abolished — Grand juries.

  1. Court shall be held within each judicial district at such times and on such dates as the judges of each judicial district fix by rule. Court shall be held in each county within the district as often as is necessary to dispose of the business of the court. Not less than thirty (30) days prior to the rule taking effect, the rule shall be published and circulated to the practicing bar, and filed with the administrative director of the courts.
  2. Terms of court are abolished and the minutes of all courts shall remain open continuously. Any reference in Tennessee Code Annotated to the beginning of a term of court shall be deemed to be a reference to the appropriate date fixed by rule as provided by this section.
  3. New grand juries shall be impaneled at least twice a year at times selected by the presiding judge of the district. The presiding judge within each district shall be responsible for designating the foreperson and for impaneling, charging and receiving the report of the grand jury, but may designate another judge to perform these responsibilities. In those districts in which there is a criminal court judge or judges, the criminal court judge or judges shall perform the duties pertaining to the grand jury assigned to the presiding judge by this subsection (c).

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 10; 1993, ch. 66, § 16.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), §§ 24.10, 24.18, 24.80, 25.14, 25.20, 25.22, 25.54.

Law Reviews.

A Noble Ideal Whose Time Has Come (Penny J. White), 18 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 223 (1989).

Cited: State v. Osborne, 712 S.W.2d 488, 1986 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 2604 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1986).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Grand Juries.

This section was enacted for the benefit of the public at large, not a particular accused, and in the absence of corruption, fraud, bias, disqualification or other illegality infecting the grand jury, an irregularity in its selection does not invalidate its acts. State v. Thompson, 768 S.W.2d 239, 1989 Tenn. LEXIS 47 (Tenn. 1989), rehearing denied, — S.W.2d —, 1989 Tenn. LEXIS 194 (Tenn. Mar. 27, 1989), cert. denied, Thompson v. Tennessee, 497 U.S. 1031, 110 S. Ct. 3288, 111 L. Ed. 2d 796, 1990 U.S. LEXIS 3596 (1990); State v. Bates, 804 S.W.2d 868, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 44 (Tenn. 1991), rehearing denied, — S.W.2d —, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 82 (Tenn. Feb. 25, 1991), cert. denied, Bates v. Tennessee, 502 U.S. 841, 112 S. Ct. 131, 116 L. Ed. 2d 98, 1991 U.S. LEXIS 4994 (1991).

16-2-511. Uniform rules of practice — Designation of court by certain types of cases.

Uniform rules of practice may be promulgated in each district by the judges of the district. The rules shall be consistent with the statutory law, the rules of the supreme court and the rules of criminal and civil procedure. The judges within a district may, by rule, designate courts or parts of a court that will be primarily responsible for hearing certain types of cases or cases dealing with certain areas of the law. Not less than thirty (30) days prior to the rules taking effect, copies of the rules shall be published and circulated to the practicing bar and filed with the administrative director of the courts.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 11; 1993, ch. 66, § 17.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.18.

Law Reviews.

Judicial Notice in Tennessee (Robert Banks, Jr. and Elizabeth T. Collins), 21 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 431 (1991).

Cited: Hessmer v. Hessmer, 138 S.W.3d 901, 2003 Tenn. App. LEXIS 346 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2003); Tigg v. Pirelli Tire Corp., 232 S.W.3d 28, 2007 Tenn. LEXIS 641 (Tenn. Aug. 16, 2007); Metropolitan Gov't of Nashville v. Cuozzo, — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 498 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 25, 2008).

16-2-512. Recommendations classifying elected additional judges.

  1. Where § 16-2-506 requires the election of an additional judge in a judicial district, the presiding judge of the district shall notify the trial court vacancy commission in writing of the judge's recommendation as to whether the additional judge will be a circuit court judge, criminal court judge, or chancellor and of the part of court the judge or chancellor will serve. The recommendation must be made by January 1 of the year in which the additional judge is to be elected and must be made only after consultation with all other trial level judges in the district, all local bar associations in the district, and any other person or group with an interest in the recommendation.
  2. The trial court vacancy commission has thirty (30) days from receipt of the written recommendation provided for in subsection (a) to approve or reject it; provided, that the recommendation stands approved unless rejected by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the entire commission. No recommendation shall be rejected except following a public hearing of the commission held upon ten (10) days' advance notice to the presiding judge who made the recommendation and to the public. At the hearing, interested parties may present evidence on the issue. If the recommendation is not approved or rejected within thirty (30) days, the recommendation is considered approved.
  3. Upon the trial court vacancy commission's approval of a recommendation pursuant to this section, it shall notify the governor of its decision. Upon receiving this recommendation, the governor shall send notice that a vacancy has occurred to the commission and shall fill the vacancy in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 3.
  4. The administrative director of the courts shall notify the presiding judge of the affected district of the commission's action and shall notify the election commission of each county in the affected district of the type of judge and part of court of the judge to be elected. Upon receiving such information, each election commission shall prepare the ballot to be used in such judicial election accordingly.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 12; 1993, ch. 66, § 18; 1993, ch. 506, § 4; 2001, ch. 268, § 2; 2019, ch. 420, § 7.

Amendments. The 2019 amendment, in the first sentence, in (a), substituted “trial court vacancy commission” for “judicial council”, and in the second sentence substituted “must be made” for “shall be made” in two places; rewrote (b), which read: “The judicial council shall have thirty (30) days from receipt of the written recommendation provided for in subsection (a) to approve or reject it; provided, that the recommendation shall stand approved unless rejected by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the entire council. No recommendation shall be rejected except following a public hearing of the council held upon ten (10) days' advance notice to the presiding judge who made the recommendation and to the public. At the hearing, interested parties may present evidence on the issue. If the recommendation is not approved or rejected within thirty (30) days, the recommendation shall be considered approved.”; and substituted “commission’s action” for “council’s action” in (d).

Effective Dates. Acts 2019, ch. 420, § 27. May 21, 2019.

Attorney General Opinions. Because the General Assembly has not repealed title 16, chapter 21 of the Tennessee Code, and has specifically referred to it and identified it as providing the appropriate procedure for filling the three new judgeships created by S.B. 5/H.B. 10, 110th Gen. Assem. (2018), the Commission should comply with T.C.A. § 16-2-512 to the extent possible, even though the Judicial Council established by title 16, chapter 21, no longer exists. OAG 18-21, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 20 (5/24/2018).

16-2-513. Formula for determining need for additional judges — Annual report.

  1. The comptroller of the treasury shall devise and maintain a weighted caseload formula for the purpose of determining the need for creation or reallocation of judicial positions using case weights derived from the most recent weighted caseload study. The comptroller of the treasury shall update the formula at least annually. The comptroller of the treasury may adjust the formula as necessary to reflect the impact of any legislative enactment that is material to judicial caseloads.
  2. Each district attorney general and each public defender, separately or through the appropriate conference, the council of juvenile and family court judges and the administrative office of the courts shall provide to the comptroller of the treasury information that the comptroller of the treasury determines is necessary to accomplish the purposes of this section. This information shall include caseload totals by appropriate case type for each study and total number of judicial, child support magistrates, district attorney and public defender resources for each district, noting how many are funded by the federal, state or local government. This data is to be provided to the comptroller in electronic and hard copy form on or before October 15 of each year.
  3. Using such formula, information and adjustments, the comptroller of the treasury shall annually publish a weighted caseload report analyzing the current distribution of judicial positions throughout the state as well as the current need, if any, for creation of or reallocation of such positions.
  4. The processing of case data by the administrative office of the courts for the purpose of providing the comptroller of the treasury with the information necessary to complete the weighted caseload study shall be subject to audit by the comptroller of the treasury. The audit shall ensure that the validation, verification and compilation of case data are performed in accordance with § 16-1-117(a).

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 13; 1989, ch. 240, §§ 1-4; 2001, ch. 408, § 5; 2002, ch. 791, § 5; 2009, ch. 235, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2009, ch. 235, § 1 directed the code commission to change all references from “child support referee” to “child support magistrate” and to include all such changes in supplements and replacement volumes for the Tennessee Code Annotated.

Amendments. The 2009 amendment substituted “child support magistrates” for “child support referees” in (b).

Effective Dates. Acts 2009, ch. 235, § 2. May 20, 2009.

Attorney General Opinions. Legislature’s authority to eliminate specific judicial positions. OAG 14-54, 2014 Tenn. AG LEXIS 56 (5/12/14)

16-2-514. Incumbent clerks and masters.

  1. Nothing in this part shall be construed to limit, terminate or otherwise affect the term or future terms of office of any circuit court clerk, criminal court clerk or clerk and master. All such incumbents shall continue in office until the expiration of their respective terms of office and shall be eligible for reelection and reappointment.
  2. Nothing in this part shall be construed to require, permit or authorize the consolidation of the offices of clerk and master, circuit court clerk or criminal court clerk or to place any clerk in a position of dominance over any other clerk.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 14.

16-2-515. References to judicial circuits or divisions deemed to judicial districts.

All references in Tennessee Code Annotated to “judicial circuits” or “chancery divisions” shall be deemed references to the judicial districts created by this part.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 25.

16-2-516. Pending cases — Process — Surety bonds — Applicability of local rules.

All process issued after September 1, 1984, shall be returnable at the times and places fixed by local court rules promulgated in accordance with this part. All bonds and undertakings executed after September 1, 1984, shall be governed by local court rules, insofar as to appearance dates and other conditions relating to time and place.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 27.

Code Commission Notes.

Former provisions in this section regarding cases pending prior to September 1, 1984, were deleted as obsolete by the code commission in 2009.

16-2-517. Jurisdictions unaffected.

Notwithstanding any provision of this part to the contrary, nothing in this part shall be construed to repeal, amend or affect in any manner any jurisdiction granted to any local court by any public or private law.

Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 28.

16-2-518. Increase in positions or funding to office of public defender.

Any increase in local funding for positions or office expense for the district attorney general shall be accompanied by an increase in funding of seventy-five percent (75%) of the increase in funding to the office of the public defender in such district for the purpose of indigent criminal defense.

Acts 1992, ch. 965, § 7; 1994, ch. 1005, § 4.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1994, ch. 937, § 33 provided that, to the extent passage of that act, which enacted § 16-2-519 and amended § 16-2-506, creates additional staffing requirements for public defenders under the provisions of § 16-2-518, as it existed on January 1, 1994, it is the legislative intent to implement such increased staffing requirements only to the extent funds for such purpose are specifically provided in the General Appropriations Act. To the extent such funds are insufficient to fully implement such staffing requirements, the district public defenders conference and the commissioner of finance and administration shall determine the allocation of any such funds as may be available under the General Appropriations Acts to the various public defender districts.

Law Reviews.

What Price is Justice? Adequate funding for judicial system needs to be top priority of upcoming General Assembly (W. Andy Hardin), 37 No. 2 Tenn. B.J. 23 (2001).

Attorney General Opinions. State ownership of equipment purchased for public defender's office, OAG 99-033 (2/18/99).

The term “office expense” in T.C.A. § 16-2-518 includes the authorized costs of all items, including capital assets, that are incurred for the district attorney general’s office to perform its duties and responsibilities. OAG 18-40, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 39 (8/29/2018).

16-2-519. Creation of assistant district attorney positions.

  1. It is the declared policy of the general assembly to create assistant district attorney general (ADA) positions based upon the number of the ADA positions to population ratios being the primary consideration with secondary consideration being caseload when uniformly reported caseload statistics become available. The Tennessee district attorneys general conference is directed to make recommendations on this basis with the immediate objective being to achieve the following ratio:

    Urban and rural districts—One (1) ADA per twenty thousand (20,000) population, according to the 1990 federal census or any subsequent federal census.

  2. As used in this section, “urban districts” means the second, sixth, eleventh, twentieth and thirtieth judicial districts and “rural districts” means all other judicial districts.
  3. For the sole purpose of computing the one (1) assistant district attorney per twenty thousand (20,000) population, the district attorney general in any one (1) county judicial district having a population of less than fifty thousand (50,000) shall be counted as one-half (½) of an assistant district attorney.
  4. Until the various judicial districts have attained approximate equality in ADA to population ratios, other factors are assigned a lower priority than ADA to population ratios. When the ratio set out in this section has been achieved, other factors, including uniform caseload statistics, local funding and geographic conditions that create logistical problems in covering the judicial district, shall be considered in support of additional position requests.

Acts 1994, ch. 937, § 1; 2019, ch. 420, § 8.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1994, ch. 937, § 32 provided that the provisions of that act, which enacted this section and amended § 16-2-506, shall take effect only to the extent funding is provided specifically for its implementation in the General Appropriations Act. To the extent such funding is insufficient to fully implement the provisions of the act, the district attorneys general conference and the commissioner of finance and administration shall determine which provisions of the act shall be implemented. Section 32 further directed the code commission to codify only those provisions of the act deemed to be funded by the district attorneys general conference as provided above.

For table of U.S.decennial populations of Tennessee counties, see Volume 13 and its supplement.

Amendments. The 2019 amendment substituted “is” for  “and the Tennessee judicial council are” in the second sentence of (a).

Effective Dates. Acts 2019, ch. 420, § 27. May 21, 2019.

16-2-520. Additional assistant district attorney general positions.

  1. Effective July 1, 2004, there are created thirty (30) additional assistant district attorney general positions to be designated in judicial districts as provided in this section.
    1. The executive director of the district attorneys general conference and the administrative director of the courts shall meet and prepare a report that contains the recommendations of such officials as to the specific judicial districts in which the additional assistant district attorney general positions created pursuant to subsection (a) should be designated. The report shall be prepared in consultation with the comptroller of the treasury.
    2. By October 1, 2004, the executive director of the district attorneys general conference shall file the report prepared pursuant to subdivision (b)(1) with the speakers of the senate and house of representatives and chairs of the judiciary committees of the senate and house of representatives. Upon the filing of the report, the district attorneys general recommended by the report to receive additional assistant positions shall be authorized to interview and employ persons to fill such positions.
  2. As early as is practicable during the first session of the 104th General Assembly, the general assembly shall consider and enact legislation that specifically designates the judicial district in which the persons employed in the additional assistant district attorney general positions created pursuant to subsection (a) will serve.
  3. The number of assistant district attorney general positions created by this section or to which the district attorney general of each judicial district is entitled pursuant to § 16-2-506 or any other provision of law shall be the minimum number of positions authorized in each district. Nothing in this section or any other provision of law shall be construed to prohibit or prevent the employment of additional assistant district attorneys general in a particular judicial district, regardless of whether the positions are funded by a state or non-state source, or whether they are specifically enumerated in this section, § 16-2-506 or any other provision of law.

Acts 2004, ch. 916, § 1; 2006, ch. 815, § 2.

16-2-521. Number of criminal investigator positions to which district attorney general entitled pursuant to § 16-2-506.

The number of criminal investigator positions to which the district attorney general of each judicial district is entitled pursuant to § 16-2-506 or any other law shall be the minimum number of positions authorized in each judicial district. No law shall be construed to prohibit the employment of additional criminal investigators in a judicial district as established by § 16-2-506, regardless of whether the positions are funded by a state or non-state source, or whether they are specifically enumerated in any other law.

Acts 2013, ch. 68, § 1.

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 68, § 4. July 1, 2013.

Chapter 3
Supreme Court

Part 1
Membership

16-3-101. Composition — Election of judges — Qualifications — Concurrence necessary for decisions.

  1. The supreme court shall consist of five (5) judges, one (1) of whom shall reside in each grand division, and no more than two (2) in the same grand division.
  2. A judge must have been a resident of the grand division from which the judge is appointed for at least one (1) year immediately preceding appointment. For purposes of this subsection (b), “resident” has the same meaning as defined in § 2-1-104.
  3. Each judge shall be at least thirty-five (35) years of age at the time of appointment, shall have been a resident of the state for at least five (5) consecutive years immediately preceding appointment, and shall be licensed to practice law in this state. For purposes of this subsection (c), “resident” has the same meaning as defined in § 2-1-104.
  4. A judge's term of office shall be eight (8) years.
  5. The concurrence of three (3) of the judges is necessary to a decision in every case.

Code 1858, § 4495 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 1); Acts 1870, ch. 24, §§ 1, 6, 9, 10 (as mod. by Const., art. 6, §§ 2, 3); Shan., §§ 375, 6328; Code 1932, §§ 632, 10630; modified; Acts 1974, ch. 708, § 1; T.C.A., §§ 2-308, 2-3-202; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-301; Acts 2016, ch. 528, §§ 2, 3.

Compiler's Notes. For the Preamble to the act concerning an orderly procedure for the appointment, confirmation, and retention of appellate court judges as required by Tennessee Constitution, Article VI, Section 3, please refer to Acts 2016, ch. 528.

Amendments. The 2016 amendment rewrote (b) which read: “Judges of the supreme court shall be elected as follows: one (1) of the supreme court judges shall be elected from each of the three (3) grand divisions and two (2) of the supreme court judges shall be elected from the state at large. Each candidate shall reside in the grand division for which the candidate is elected and the two (2) candidates elected for the state at large shall not reside in the same grand division.”; and rewrote (c) which read: “Each judge shall be thirty-five (35) years of age and shall, before election, have been a resident of the state for five (5) years.”

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 23. January 28, 2016.

Cross-References. Composition of supreme court, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Concurrence of supreme court judges needed for decision, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Election of judges, §§ 2-3-202, 17-1-103.

Grand divisions, title 4, ch.1, part 2.

Qualifications of supreme court judges, election, and term, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 3.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Attorney General Opinions. Residency requirements for the appellate courts, OAG 94-141 (11/28/94).

Factors used to determine residency status, OAG 95-019 (3/27/95).

Comparative Legislation. Supreme Court:

Ala.  Code § 12-2-1 et seq.

Ark.  Code § 16-11-101 et seq.

Ga. O.C.G.A. § 15-2-1 et seq.

Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 21A.010 et seq.

Miss.  Code Ann. § 9-3-1 et seq.

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 477.010 et seq.

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 7A-10 et seq.; § 7A-25 et seq.

Va. Code § 17-93 et seq.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Concurrence.

Less than three judges cannot reach a decision but such decision may be announced by only one member. Cowan v. Murch, 97 Tenn. 590, 37 S.W. 393, 1896 Tenn. LEXIS 186, 34 L.R.A. 538, (1896).

16-3-102. Chief justice.

After their election and qualification, the judges shall designate one (1) of their number who shall preside as chief justice.

Acts 1870, ch. 24, § 11; Shan., § 376; Code 1932, § 633; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-302.

Cross-References. Selection of chief justice, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

16-3-103. Expenses.

The expenses of the supreme court shall be paid out of the state treasury, upon the warrant of the commissioner of finance and administration.

Code 1858, § 106 (deriv. Acts. 1857-1858, ch. 79, § 4); Shan., § 135; mod. Code 1932, § 153; impl. am. Acts 1937, ch. 33, § 24; impl. am. Acts 1939, ch. 11, § 12; C. Supp. 1950, § 153; modified; impl. am. Acts 1959, ch. 9, § 3; impl. am. Acts 1961, ch. 97, § 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-303.

Part 2
Powers and Duties

16-3-201. Jurisdiction.

  1. The jurisdiction of the court is appellate only, under restrictions and regulations that from time to time are prescribed by law; but it may possess other jurisdiction that is now conferred by law upon the present supreme court.
  2. The court has no original jurisdiction, but appeals and writs of error, or other proceedings for the correction of errors, lie from the inferior courts and court of appeals, within each division, to the supreme court as provided by this code.
  3. The court also has jurisdiction over all interlocutory appeals arising out of matters over which the court has exclusive jurisdiction.
    1. The supreme court may, upon the motion of any party, assume jurisdiction over an undecided case in which a notice of appeal or an application for interlocutory or extraordinary appeal is filed before any intermediate state appellate court.
    2. Subdivision (d)(1) applies only to cases of unusual public importance in which there is a special need for expedited decision and that involve:
      1. State taxes;
      2. The right to hold or retain public office; or
      3. Issues of constitutional law.
    3. The supreme court may, upon its own motion, when there is a compelling public interest, assume jurisdiction over an undecided case in which a notice of appeal or an application for interlocutory or extraordinary appeal is filed with an intermediate state appellate court.
    4. The supreme court may by order take actions necessary or appropriate to the exercise of the authority vested by this section.
  4. Appeals of actions under title 2, chapter 17 relative to election contests shall be to the court of appeals in accordance with the Tennessee rules of appellate procedure.

Code 1858, § 4496 (deriv. Acts 1822, ch. 13, § 4); Acts 1870, ch. 24, § 8; Shan., §§ 377, 6329; mod. Code 1932, §§ 634, 10631; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-304; Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 2; 1992, ch. 952, §§ 11, 12; 1994, ch. 573, § 1; 2001, ch. 256, § 1; 2016, ch. 755, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 4 provided that any action pending on July 1, 1989, shall be maintained under law prior to the 1989 amendment by that act until its final disposition.

Acts 1992, ch. 952, § 15 provided that the amendments by that act apply to all matters as to which a notice of appeal is filed from and after May 1, 1992.

Amendments. The 2016 amendment inserted “or an application for interlocutory or extraordinary appeal” in (d)(3).

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 755, § 2. April 12, 2016.

Cross-References. Constitutional jurisdiction and jurisdiction of supreme court, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 705.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 16, 51, 138, 210, 222; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 18.

Law Reviews.

Regulation of the Bar in Tennessee (Walter P. Armstrong, Jr.), 53 Tenn. L. Rev. 723 (1986).

“Seeking Justice on Appeal,” 27 No. 4 Tenn. B.J. 28 (1991).

Cited: Ashe v. Leech, 653 S.W.2d 398, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 676 (Tenn. 1983); Stewart Title Guar. Co. v. McReynolds, 886 S.W.2d 233, 1994 Tenn. App. LEXIS 296 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1994); State v. Shepherd, 902 S.W.2d 895, 1995 Tenn. LEXIS 269 (Tenn. 1995); Ballard v. Herzke, 924 S.W.2d 652, 1996 Tenn. LEXIS 378 (Tenn. 1996); Holder v. Tennessee Judicial Selection Comm'n, 937 S.W.2d 877, 1996 Tenn. LEXIS 688 (Tenn. 1996); State v. Booher, 978 S.W.2d 953, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 799 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997); In re Askew, 993 S.W.2d 1, 1999 Tenn. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. 1999); State v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., 18 S.W.3d 186, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 194 (Tenn. 2000); Workman v. State, 22 S.W.3d 807, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 655 (Tenn. 2000); Haley v. Univ. of Tennessee-Knoxville, 188 S.W.3d 518, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 192 (Tenn. 2006); Bailey v. County of Shelby, 188 S.W.3d 539, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 208 (Tenn. 2006); ACLU v. Darnell, 195 S.W.3d 612, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 610 (Tenn. 2006); Mills v. Shelby County Election Comm'n, 218 S.W.3d 33, 2006 Tenn. App. LEXIS 589 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2006); Jordan v. Knox County, 213 S.W.3d 751, 2007 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (Tenn. 2007); Bredesen v. Tenn. Judicial Selection Comm'n, 214 S.W.3d 419, 2007 Tenn. LEXIS 121 (Tenn. 2007); Hooker v. Haslam, 393 S.W.3d 156, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 719 (Tenn. July 27, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Nature of Jurisdiction.

The jurisdiction is appellate only, with such powers as, though not appellate, are absolutely necessary in carrying out and completing the jurisdiction given, such as forfeited recognizances, failure of officers to return process, or false returns, motions against them, etc. Miller v. Conlee, 37 Tenn. 432, 1858 Tenn. LEXIS 30 (1858); Memphis v. Halsey, 59 Tenn. 210, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 44 (1873); State ex rel. Kain v. Hall, 65 Tenn. 3, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 290 (1873); State v. Wilson, 70 Tenn. 204, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 157 (1879); Dodds v. Duncan, 80 Tenn. 731, 1884 Tenn. LEXIS 157 (1884); State use of Fletcher v. Gannaway, 84 Tenn. 124, 1885 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1885).

This last clause, “but it may possess such other jurisdiction as is now conferred by law upon the present supreme court,” confers power to adopt such proceedings, issue such process, and try such facts as might become necessary to carry out and perfect its own judgments and decrees in cases before it by appeal, or writ of error, such as the issuance of scire facias and capias upon forfeited bonds or recognizances, motions against sheriffs for nonreturn of process. Jurisdiction of this character is all that was intended to be conferred by that provision. State v. Bank of East Tennessee, 37 Tenn. 573, 1858 Tenn. LEXIS 64 (1858); Ward v. Thomas, 42 Tenn. 565, 1865 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1865); Motion Against Curry, 59 Tenn. 51, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (1873). See also Bank of Tennessee v. Cannon, 49 Tenn. 428, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1871).

The jurisdiction of the supreme court is appellate only. Memphis S. R. Co. v. Byrne, 119 Tenn. 278, 104 S.W. 460, 1907 Tenn. LEXIS 8 (1907).

The power of the supreme court exists in every case that reaches the court through the exercise of its appellate power, as, for example, by the writ of certiorari, as well as by writ of error or appeal, or appeal in the nature of a writ of error; also to proceedings originating in the court in aid and enforcement of its appellate power at every stage, from their inception in any given controversy to their completion in the full execution of its final judgments and decrees. State ex rel. Conner v. Herbert, 127 Tenn. 220, 154 S.W. 957, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1912).

Supreme court is a court of appellate jurisdiction only and without jurisdiction to hear proof on petition to set aside decrees and orders of chancery court and Court of Appeals. Pierce v. Tharp, 224 Tenn. 328, 455 S.W.2d 145, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 330 (1970), rehearing denied, 224 Tenn. 339, 457 S.W.2d 529 (1970), cert. denied, McKown v. Pierce, 402 U.S. 929, 91 S. Ct. 1527, 28 L. Ed. 2d 863, 1971 U.S. LEXIS 2286 (1971).

2. Power of General Assembly to Regulate Jurisdiction.

The jurisdiction is appellate only, and the general assembly cannot confer any original jurisdiction upon it. State v. Bank of East Tennessee, 37 Tenn. 573, 1858 Tenn. LEXIS 64 (1858); Ward v. Thomas, 42 Tenn. 565, 1865 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1865); State ex rel. Kain v. Hall, 65 Tenn. 3, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 290 (1873); State use of Fletcher v. Gannaway, 84 Tenn. 124, 1885 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1885).

The general assembly may, by establishing an intermediate appellate court or other appropriate legislation, restrict the right of litigants to resort to the supreme court and regulate the mode of doing so, but may not interfere unreasonably or embarrass its ultimate supervisory power. Memphis S. R. Co. v. Byrne, 119 Tenn. 278, 104 S.W. 460, 1907 Tenn. LEXIS 8 (1907).

3. Advisory Opinions.

The supreme court will not give advisory opinions where it is without jurisdiction. Crane Enamelware Co. v. Smith, 168 Tenn. 203, 76 S.W.2d 644, 1934 Tenn. LEXIS 39 (1934); De Saussure v. Hall, 201 Tenn. 164, 297 S.W.2d 90, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 479 (1956).

4. Cases De Novo.

The supreme court, being exclusively an appellate tribunal, has no jurisdiction to try cases de novo. Simm v. Dougherty, 186 Tenn. 356, 210 S.W.2d 486, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 557 (1948).

5. Security on Process Sued Out in Lower Court.

The supreme court cannot make a rule to justify or give new security on process sued out in the court below. Stewart v. Wilcox, 69 Tenn. 81, 1878 Tenn. LEXIS 47 (1878); Scoggins v. Cowden, 69 Tenn. 134, 1878 Tenn. LEXIS 63 (1878).

6. Receivers — Effect of Action of Lower Court.

An application for a receiver, based upon the same facts on which the chancellor had refused a similar application, cannot be entertained. Allen v. Harris, 72 Tenn. 190, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1879); State use of Fletcher v. Gannaway, 84 Tenn. 124, 1885 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1885).

The supreme court cannot revise the action of the inferior court as to the appointment of a receiver separately, for there cannot be separate hearings of different parts of the same case. Christian v. Clark, 78 Tenn. 291, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 178 (1882).

7. Judgments in Favor of Sureties.

The supreme court has no jurisdiction of a motion of one cosurety for judgment against another, nor of the sureties against the principal. Waters v. Lewis, 17 Tenn. 15, 1836 Tenn. LEXIS 4 (1836); Evans v. Vanbibber, 1 Shan. 38 (1850); Ward v. Thomas, 42 Tenn. 565, 1865 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1865).

8. Decrees of court of appeals.

Interlocutory decrees of court of appeals are not reviewed by the supreme court. First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929).

9. Power as to Lower Court.

The supreme court can by mandamus compel a lower court to set aside an illegal act. State ex rel. Richards v. Sneed, 105 Tenn. 711, 58 S.W. 1070, 1900 Tenn. LEXIS 125 (1900), overruled, Shelton v. Wade, 139 Tenn. 685, 203 S.W. 253, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 138 (1918).

The supreme court has jurisdiction to enjoin a proceeding in a lower court which is an interference with its decree. Caldwell v. Spicer & McEvoy, 159 Tenn. 465, 19 S.W.2d 238, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 108 (1929).

State supreme court assumed jurisdiction of an appeal from an intermediate state appellate court to decide if the state failed to comply with the supreme court's directive in Small Schools II to equalize teachers' salaries according to the basic education plan (BEP) formula for funding public education. Tenn. Small Sch. Sys. v. McWherter, 91 S.W.3d 232, 2002 Tenn. LEXIS 425, 110 A.L.R.5th 707 (Tenn. 2002).

10. Restraining Usurpation of Jurisdiction by Lower Court.

The supreme court has no jurisdiction to award a writ of prohibition to restrain an inferior tribunal from a usurpation of jurisdiction. Memphis v. Halsey, 59 Tenn. 210, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 44 (1873).

11. —Determinations as to Bail.

The supreme court had no jurisdiction to compel an inferior court to hear and determine whether prisoners are entitled to bail. State v. Elmore, 46 Tenn. 528, 1869 Tenn. LEXIS 92 (1869).

12. —Exclusion of Attorney by Lower Court.

If an inferior judge improperly excludes an attorney from practice, and will not permit anything to be entered of record from which an appeal may be taken, and refuses to sign a proper bill of exceptions, the supreme court has jurisdiction, by mandamus, to compel him to do so, and he will be liable for costs. Ingersoll v. Howard, 48 Tenn. 247, 1870 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1870).

13. —Trial of Cause in Lower Court.

The court has no jurisdiction to award a mandamus to compel an inferior judge to proceed to the trial of a cause. State ex rel. Kain v. Hall, 65 Tenn. 3, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 290 (1873).

14. —Bill of Exceptions.

Under its appellate powers, the supreme court has jurisdiction to award the writ of mandamus to the end that an inferior judge may be compelled to sign a proper bill of exceptions. State ex rel. Sneed v. Hall, 43 Tenn. 255, 1866 Tenn. LEXIS 49 (1866); In re Vanvaver, 88 Tenn. 334, 12 S.W. 786, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 55 (1890)

Writ of mandamus compelling the signing of bill of exceptions will only be granted when there has been a clear case of abuse of discretion by the judge. Alexander v. State, 82 Tenn. 88, 1884 Tenn. LEXIS 109 (1884); State v. Brockwell, 84 Tenn. 683, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 156 (1886).

The inferior judge will not be compelled to sign a particular bill of exceptions, when he asserts upon his oath its incorrectness, and its correctness is doubtful; but if the particular bill is clearly correct, he would be compelled to sign it. In re Vanvaver, 88 Tenn. 334, 12 S.W. 786, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 55 (1890).

15. —Certiorari.

The supreme court, with appellate and supervisory jurisdiction over proceedings and judgments of all inferior courts, has the inherent power to grant writs of certiorari, whenever necessary in the exercise and enforcement of its jurisdiction. Tennessee C. R. Co. v. Campbell, 109 Tenn. 640, 75 S.W. 1012, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 96 (1903); Tennessee C. R. Co. v. Campbell, 109 Tenn. 655, 73 S.W. 112, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 97 (1903).

The appellate courts have, in their spheres, jurisdiction to award the writ of certiorari to correct errors of lower courts. Cockrill v. Peoples Sav. Bank, 155 Tenn. 342, 293 S.W. 996, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1927).

16. —Appeal Bond.

The supreme court had jurisdiction to issue mandamus to compel a lower court to accept a proper bond required to perfect an appeal. Ing v. Davey, 70 Tenn. 276, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 175 (1879).

17. —Review of Juvenile Court Proceedings.

The juvenile court is neither a court of law nor of equity within the meaning of this section. Review of its proceedings is by way of certiorari to the circuit court. State v. Bockman, 139 Tenn. 422, 201 S.W. 741, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 118 (1917).

18. Judgment of Supreme Court — Correction of Errors.

The supreme court may correct mistakes apparent on the face of the record, such as clerical errors, at any term after final judgment; but mistake of facts or errors in judgment in point of law, existing in the decree, are, after the expiration of the term, beyond the reach of the court. Elliot v. Cochran, 41 Tenn. 389, 1860 Tenn. LEXIS 80 (1860); Russell v. Colyar, 51 Tenn. 154, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 147 (1871).

19. —Bill of Review.

The supreme court had no jurisdiction to entertain a bill of review to review its own decrees. Cox v. Breedlove, 10 Tenn. 499, 1831 Tenn. LEXIS 7 (1831); Murphy v. Johnson, 107 Tenn. 552, 64 S.W. 894, 1901 Tenn. LEXIS 107 (1901).

20. —Writ of Error Coram Nobis.

The supreme court has no jurisdiction to entertain a writ of error coram nobis; and a person whose name is forged to an appeal bond as surety, and against whom a judgment is rendered, is entitled to no relief by such writ. Lamb v. Sneed, 63 Tenn. 349, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 260 (1874); Wills v. Wills, 104 Tenn. 382, 58 S.W. 301, 1900 Tenn. LEXIS 5 (1900), overruled, Moore v. Moore, 222 Tenn. 1, 431 S.W.2d 754, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 405 (1968).

21. —Chancery Proceedings.

An accommodation endorser of a note, against whom and the makers judgment was rendered, from which the makers appealed for themselves and the endorser, without his authority and consent, on the affirmance of the judgment in the supreme court, is entitled, upon bill filed in chancery court establishing these facts, to have the surety on appeal bond held liable before him. Coles v. Anderson & Griswell, 27 Tenn. 489, 1847 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1847).

Where judgment was rendered without notice in supreme court on sheriff's bond for nonreturn of execution in an amount greater than due, chancery court could grant relief in form of an injunction. Smith v. Van Bebber, 31 Tenn. 110, 1851 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1851).

A judgment rendered in the supreme court, on motion, without notice, upon a sheriff's official bond, for the nonreturn of an execution, where his term of office expired before the return day, is void, and, it being regular upon its face, the remedy is by bill in chancery court to have it declared void. Kinzer v. Helm, 54 Tenn. 672, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1872).

Where the satisfaction of a judgment of the supreme court is set aside by it on the ex parte application of the judgment debtor suppressing a material fact, the disclosure of which would have defeated the application, the chancery court has jurisdiction to enjoin the execution of the judgment, and the ex parte action of supreme court is not res judicata. Wilburn v. McCollom, 54 Tenn. 267, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1872).

The supreme court's decree cannot be reviewed by a bill of review in the chancery court from which the cause was appealed. Hurt v. Long, 90 Tenn. 445, 16 S.W. 968, 1891 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1891); Murphy v. Johnson, 107 Tenn. 552, 64 S.W. 894, 1901 Tenn. LEXIS 107 (1901).

22. Judgment of Supreme Court — Revival.

The supreme court has jurisdiction to issue scire facias to revive its own judgments as in similar cases in the inferior courts. McIntosh v. Paul, 74 Tenn. 45, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 209 (1880).

23. Unusual Public Importance.

A case involving the requirements of the constitutional provision as to the placement of a proposed amendment to the constitution on the general election ballot presented an issue of unusual public importance with a special need for an expedited decision. State ex rel. Cohen v. Darnell, 885 S.W.2d 61, 1994 Tenn. LEXIS 275 (Tenn. 1994).

Collateral References. 5 Am. Jur. 2d Appeal and Error §§ 1, 4, 6-14, 20, 1007, 1008.

21 C.J.S. Courts § 457.

Courts 23.

16-3-202. Process, receivers, and references.

The court may appoint receivers, order references and issue all writs and process necessary for the exercise and enforcement of its jurisdiction.

Code 1858, § 4503; Shan., § 6336; mod. Code 1932, § 10637; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-305.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 679.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 3 Tenn. Juris., Attachment and Garnishment, § 152.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Writs and Process Enforcing Jurisdiction.

The supreme court has jurisdiction by adequate writs to make effective appeals to it from lower courts. Ward v. Thomas, 42 Tenn. 565, 1865 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1865); State ex rel. Shaw v. Cooper, 107 Tenn. 202, 64 S.W. 50, 1901 Tenn. LEXIS 72 (1901); State ex rel. Conner v. Herbert, 127 Tenn. 220, 154 S.W. 957, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1912). See Newman v. Justices of Scott County, 48 Tenn. 787, 1870 Tenn. LEXIS 149 (1870).

The supreme court has authority to issue all writs and process necessary for the exercise and enforcement of its jurisdiction and to protect its jurisdiction. To prevent such jurisdiction from being trifled with or rendered ineffectual, it may consider matters transpiring after a cause is heard in the lower court. Cockrill v. Peoples Sav. Bank, 155 Tenn. 342, 293 S.W. 996, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1927).

The supreme court has power and authority to take such action as it deems proper and appropriate to enforce its decrees and orders and to issue all necessary process to prevent interference therewith. State ex rel. Stall v. Knoxville, 211 Tenn. 428, 365 S.W.2d 433, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1963).

Where trial court and supreme court had previously sustained validity of annexation ordinance and annexation procedure and same complainants filed suit in chancery court seeking to enjoin collection of taxes in the annexed area and complaint in chancery suit contained basically the same averments as those in the previous proceedings, supreme court issued supersedeas and permanent injunction superseding any action taken or which might be taken in the chancery proceeding and enjoining and restraining complainants from interfering directly or indirectly with previous judgment of the supreme court. State ex rel. Stall v. Knoxville, 211 Tenn. 428, 365 S.W.2d 433, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1963).

2. Receivers.

The supreme court has power to appoint a receiver in a cause pending in it by appeal. West v. Weaver, 50 Tenn. 589, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 118 (1871); Kerr v. White, 66 Tenn. 394, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 151 (1874); Bidwell v. Paul, 64 Tenn. 693, 1875 Tenn. LEXIS 160 (1875); Allen v. Harris, 72 Tenn. 190, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1879).

Application for receiver, made in advance of hearing on appeal, will not be entertained. Allen v. Harris, 72 Tenn. 190, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1879).

The supreme court is without power to appoint a receiver in a cause pending in it by appeal, after an inferior court has refused the application. Allen v. Harris, 72 Tenn. 190, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1879); Darusmont v. Patton, 72 Tenn. 597, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1880).

3. Writ of Restitution.

The supreme court may issue a writ of restitution. Caruthers v. Caruthers, 70 Tenn. 71, 1878 Tenn. LEXIS 189 (1878).

The supreme court may issue a writ of restitution only after a hearing on the merits. Terry v. Clark, 72 Tenn. 186, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 16 (1879).

4. Examination of Garnishees.

The court has jurisdiction to examine a garnishee in aid of its final process. Wyler, Ackerland & Co. v. Blevins, 113 Tenn. 528, 82 S.W. 829, 1904 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1904).

5. Interference with Process — Prevention.

The court is empowered to prevent interference with process in any division, wherever it may be sitting. State ex rel. Conner v. Herbert, 127 Tenn. 220, 154 S.W. 957, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1912).

6. Staying Proceeding under Procedendo.

The supreme court, having concluded that it properly should have taken jurisdiction of a cause and granted a petition for certiorari, and the time in which it might grant the writ to review a decree of the court of appeals not being limited, acted within its power in granting the writ upon becoming satisfied of a mistake in its former refusal. Having taken jurisdiction of the cause, the court had full authority, under this section, by way of exercising and enforcing its own jurisdiction to stay proceedings under a procedendo irregularly issued from the court of appeals. McArthur v. Faw, 183 Tenn. 504, 193 S.W.2d 763, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 230 (1946).

7. Executor De Bonis Propriis — Judgment Against.

The supreme court cannot render judgment against an executor de bonis propriis upon the return of an execution nulla bona against him de bonis testatoris. Chestnut v. McBride, 65 Tenn. 95, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 310 (1873).

8. Execution of Judgment.

The execution of the supreme court judgment may be effected by an order to the marshal of the court, to the sheriff of any county having the prisoner in charge, or to an official of the penitentiary, to take possession of the prisoner, and transport him to the penitentiary. Vowell v. State, 132 Tenn. 349, 178 S.W. 768, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1915).

16-3-203. Powers over criminal defendants.

The court may recommit offenders in state cases, when it may appear necessary, and remand them to the inferior court from which their cases were brought to the supreme court, taking recognizances from the defendants, when the offense charged is bailable, with the security that the court judges proper.

Code 1858, § 4498 (deriv. Acts 1817, ch. 17, § 3); Shan., § 6331; Code 1932, § 10632; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-306.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 4 Tenn. Juris., Bail and Recognizance, § 4; 8 Tenn. Juris., Criminal Procedure, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 18.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Presence of Accused in Court.

In a felony case there is no requirement that the accused confined in the penitentiary, pending his appeal, or at large on bond be present in the supreme court when his case is heard or decided, because Tenn. Const., art. I, § 9, requiring his presence “in all criminal prosecutions,” applies only to a trial prosecuted by the state in the trial court, which does not include a review on appeal or writ of error, which is a proceeding brought by the accused himself. Vowell v. State, 132 Tenn. 349, 178 S.W. 768, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1915).

The accused appealing from a conviction of a felony who is bonded to appear in court must be present in cases where judgment is affirmed on appeal, either at the time or later, in order that actual custody may be taken of him, and that he may be transported to the penitentiary; and in case of reversal and remandment for new trial, he must attend to give bond or recognizance, unless permitted by order of the court to surrender to the sheriff of the trial court and give bond there, and only under very special circumstances will the court reverse a judgment in a felony case where the accused is under bond without requiring his presence in court. Vowell v. State, 132 Tenn. 349, 178 S.W. 768, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1915).

16-3-204. Bonds and recognizances.

  1. The court may give judgment upon any and all bonds or recognizances, whether in civil or criminal cases, executed in the progress of the cause, under the general provisions of law, or by lawful order of the court, either in the inferior or supreme court, and enforce the same by execution or otherwise, as in the case of other judgments and decrees of the court.
  2. Process of scire facias may, in all such cases, be issued as is proper in similar cases in the inferior courts, and, upon appearance of the defendant, and issue of fact made thereon, the court may order a jury to be summoned forthwith to determine the issue, and may give judgment thereon as the inferior courts of law might do in similar cases.

Code 1858, §§ 4499, 4500 (deriv. Acts 1817, ch. 199, § 3); Shan., §§ 6332, 6333; Code 1932, §§ 10633, 10634; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-307.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 265; 8 Tenn. Juris., Criminal Procedure, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 18.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Surety on Appeal Bond — Liability Ahead of Party Not Appealing.

An accommodation endorser of a note, against whom and the makers judgment was rendered, from which the makers appealed for themselves and the endorser, without his authority and consent, on the affirmance of the judgment in the supreme court, is entitled, upon bill filed in the chancery court establishing these facts, to have a surety on appeal bond held liable before himself. Coles v. Anderson & Griswell, 27 Tenn. 489, 1847 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1847); Murray v. Winham, 3 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 336 (1877); Winham v. Crutcher, 78 Tenn. 610, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 230 (1882); Briggs v. Hinton, 82 Tenn. 233, 1884 Tenn. LEXIS 123 (1884).

2. Jury.

The appellate court may order a jury, to be summoned forthwith, to determine an issue of fact upon the return of a scire facias issuing out of such court. Newman v. Justices of Scott County, 48 Tenn. 787, 1870 Tenn. LEXIS 149 (1870); Lamb v. Sneed, 63 Tenn. 349, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 260 (1874); Dodds v. Duncan, 80 Tenn. 731, 1884 Tenn. LEXIS 157 (1884).

3. Presence of Defendant Required.

In a felony case there is no requirement that the accused confined in the penitentiary, pending his appeal, or at large on bond be present in the supreme court when his case is heard or decided, because Tenn. Const., art. I, § 9, requiring his presence “in all criminal prosecutions,” applies only to a trial prosecuted by the state in the trial court, which does not include a review on appeal or writ of error, which is a proceeding brought by the accused himself. Vowell v. State, 132 Tenn. 349, 178 S.W. 768, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1915).

The accused appealing from a conviction of a felony who is bonded to appear in court must be present in cases where judgment is affirmed on appeal, either at the time or later, in order that actual custody may be taken of him, and that he may be transported to the penitentiary; and in case of reversal and remandment for new trial, he must attend to give bond or recognizance, unless permitted by order of the court to surrender to the sheriff of the trial court and give bond there, and only under very special circumstances will the court reverse a judgment in a felony case where the accused is under bond without requiring his presence in court. Vowell v. State, 132 Tenn. 349, 178 S.W. 768, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1915).

Collateral References. 76 C.J.S. Recognizances §§ 31, 32.

16-3-205. Supersedeas by judges.

The judges of the supreme court, or any one of them, on a proper case being made out, shall have the authority to grant the process of supersedeas to an execution, returnable to their own court, in the same manner the supreme court, while it is in session, can grant such process, also grant supersedeas to the execution of an interlocutory decree of an inferior court, in the cases provided for in § 27-1-103 [repealed].

Code 1858, §§ 4512, 4513 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 15; 1851-1852, ch. 181, § 4); Shan., §§ 6347, 6348; Code 1932, §§ 10649, 10650; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-308.

Compiler's Notes. Section 27-1-103, referred to in this section, was repealed by Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 1(8). For present provisions, see T.R.A.P. 3, 7, 10, 13, 24, 36.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 265; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judges, § 15.

Cited: Clements v. Roberts, 144 Tenn. 129, 230 S.W. 30, 1920 Tenn. LEXIS 66 (1921).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

The supreme court may in term time, or either of the judges in vacation, grant writs of supersedeas to the execution of such interlocutory orders or decrees of inferior courts as are to be carried out or executed by some further act of such inferior courts, but cannot supersede negative or prohibitory orders, or orders simply and only removing the inhibition of an injunction, and if the chancellor's order is nothing more than the removal of the injunction, which leaves the defendant free to prosecute his remedy at law, it cannot be superseded, but if the order dissolving an injunction gives a judgment on the injunction bond for the debt enjoined, the writ of supersedeas may be granted to supersede its execution. Watkins v. First Nat'l Bank, 3 Shan. 564 (1875).

Where term of office of clerk and master of chancery court had not expired when his successor was appointed, and the latter procured a warrant directing the seizure of official books and papers, on application for a writ of error from the judgment on which the warrant issued, a supersedeas would issue, though the warrant has been fully executed, with a direction to restore the books and papers, that being the only method for preserving the rights of the parties as they were before the making of the order. Stafford v. Williams, 3 Shan. 311, 13 S.W. 793, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. 1889).

2. Temporary Injunction.

Supersedeas is not a suitable remedy to vacate a temporary injunction. Howell v. Thompson, 130 Tenn. 311, 170 S.W. 253, 1914 Tenn. LEXIS 30 (1914).

3. Transcript of Record — Necessity.

A writ of supersedeas to an interlocutory order or decree of the chancery court cannot be granted by one of the judges of the supreme court, unless the petition therefor is accompanied by a transcript of the whole record, or so much of it as is essential to enable the judge to pass upon the alleged error, and both must be filed. Richardson v. Wm. Richardson & Co., 3 Shan. 401 (1875); Roberson v. Roberson, 71 Tenn. 50, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1879).

A motion will lie to discharge a writ of supersedeas to an interlocutory order or decree of chancery, where it was granted by one of the supreme judges, and where no transcript of the record was filed with the petition therefor in the supreme court. In this case, the motion was postponed to give the party in whose favor the writ was issued an opportunity to file a transcript of the record. Richardson v. Wm. Richardson & Co., 3 Shan. 401 (1875).

4. Reversal of Supreme Court's Judgments at Subsequent Term.

This section does not confer power on the supreme court to reverse its decrees or judgments at a term subsequent to that at which they were rendered. Lamb v. Sneed, 63 Tenn. 349, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 260 (1874).

Collateral References. Prohibition 16.

16-3-206. Vacating judgment.

In all cases in which the supreme court may give judgment or decree through inadvertence and oversight, when upon the face of the record no cause of action existed against the party, the court may, upon its own motion, vacate the judgment or decree.

Code 1858, § 4501 (deriv. Acts 1845-1846, ch. 135); Shan., § 6334; mod. Code 1932, § 10635; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-309.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 265; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 47; 19 Tenn. Juris., Motions and Summary Proceedings, § 9.

Cited: Fort v. Dixie Oil Co., 171 Tenn. 199, 101 S.W.2d 692, 1936 Tenn. LEXIS 80 (1937).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Purpose of Statute.

The purpose of the statute was that in cases where, from inadvertence, that is, the mind of the court not being turned to the fact, or by an oversight, not having observed it, a wrong judgment was rendered, and if it should appear from the records of the court that such was the case, a correction might be made. Russell v. Colyar, 51 Tenn. 154, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 147 (1871); Riggs v. White, 51 Tenn. 503, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 194 (1871). See also Polk v. Pledge, 52 Tenn. 371, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 270 (1871); Bond v. Greenwald, 66 Tenn. 466, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 166 (1874); Pettit v. Cooper, 77 Tenn. 21, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 9 (1882).

2. Time for Vacating Judgment.

A judgment given through “inadvertence and oversight” may be vacated at a subsequent term. Russell v. Colyar, 51 Tenn. 154, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 147 (1871); Polk v. Pledge, 52 Tenn. 371, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 270 (1871). See Easley v. Tarkington, 64 Tenn. 592, 1875 Tenn. LEXIS 133 (1875).

3. Surprise of Defendant.

The supreme court will not set aside its own judgment, valid on its face, to allow a plea of bankruptcy, upon the ground that the judgment was taken by surprise to the defendant, and before the cause was reached on the docket. Riggs v. White, 51 Tenn. 503, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 194 (1871).

4. Attorneys Consenting to Setting Aside.

The court cannot, even by consent of attorneys for parties, set aside its judgment rendered at former term, except where by a clerical mistake or inadvertence an erroneous judgment has been entered. Thompson v. Anderson, 2 Shan. 161 (1876); Hethcoat v. State, 213 Tenn. 563, 376 S.W.2d 478, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 422 (1964); Pierce v. Tharp, 224 Tenn. 328, 455 S.W.2d 145, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 330 (1970), rehearing denied, 224 Tenn. 339, 457 S.W.2d 529 (1970), cert. denied, McKown v. Pierce, 402 U.S. 929, 91 S. Ct. 1527, 28 L. Ed. 2d 863, 1971 U.S. LEXIS 2286 (1971).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts § 501.

16-3-207. Correction of apparent mistakes.

The court may, at any time after final judgment, correct mistakes apparent on the face of the record, as provided in § 20-11-106 [repealed].

Code 1858, § 4502 (deriv. Acts 1855-1856, ch. 70, § 2); Shan., § 6335; Code 1932, § 10636; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-310.

Compiler's Notes. Section 20-11-106, referred to in this section, was repealed by Acts 1989, ch. 106, § 1. Section Tenn. R. Civ. P. 60.01 was intended to supersede § 20-11-106. The Committee Comment to that rule reads: “60.01: This Rule supersedes the provisions of Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 20-1508 [repealed], 20-11-106 and 20-11-107, although it is generally consistent with the purpose of those statutes. The provisions of the Rule are somewhat more flexible than the statutory procedures.”

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 265; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 46; 19 Tenn. Juris., Motions and Summary Proceedings, § 9.

Law Reviews.

Criminal Law and Procedure — 1954 Tennessee Survey, 7 Vand. L. Rev. 825.

Cited: Fort v. Dixie Oil Co., 171 Tenn. 199, 101 S.W.2d 692, 1936 Tenn. LEXIS 80 (1937).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Court Changing Its Opinion.

Judgments will not be changed because the court has changed its opinion. Though erroneous in point of law or in conclusions of fact, they are final in the particular cases, and cannot be vacated at a subsequent term. Overton v. Bigelow's Adm'r, 18 Tenn. 48, 1836 Tenn. LEXIS 100 (1836); Allen v. Barksdale, 38 Tenn. 238, 1858 Tenn. LEXIS 162 (Tenn. Dec. 1858); Saunders v. Gregory's Heirs, 50 Tenn. 567, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 115 (1871); Rafalshy v. M. Kraus & Co., 57 Tenn. 558, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 260 (1873); Lamb v. Sneed, 63 Tenn. 349, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 260 (1874); Markham v. Townsend, 2 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 713 (1877).

2. Matters Available at Time of Order — Urging at Subsequent Term.

A decretal order will not be modified at a subsequent term of the supreme court, upon grounds which might and should have been urged when the order was made. Myers v. James, 72 Tenn. 370, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1880).

3. Judgment Correct on Face.

Where the judgment is correct on its face, though erroneous, it cannot be vacated or corrected under §§ 16-3-206, 16-3-207. Kinzer v. Helm, 54 Tenn. 672, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (1872).

4. Names Omitted from Appeal Bond.

Omission of names from appeal bond cannot be corrected, after final disposition in the supreme court, upon a bill filed in the chancery court for that purpose, although such omission was the mistake of the clerk of the inferior court. The supreme court might, in the original cause, before its final determination, have granted permission to amend the defective bond, but such mistake cannot be made the object of a new bill. Duval v. Brady, 72 Tenn. 528, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 57 (1880).

5. Execution Barring Right to Modification.

A decretal order will not be modified at all after it has been executed unless, indeed, in a very extraordinary case. Myers v. James, 72 Tenn. 370, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1880).

16-3-208. Appeals taken before term.

All appeals, and appeals in the nature of a writ of error, taken from the final judgment or decree of an inferior court, at any time before the sitting of the supreme court, shall stand for hearing at the first term, without notice to the opposite party.

Code 1858, § 4514 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 19); Shan., § 6349; Code 1932, § 10651; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-312.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 51, 58, 218.

Cited: Harmon v. Hart, 53 S.W. 310, 1899 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 74 (1899).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Application to Court of Appeals.

Although this section and § 16-3-209 deal with jurisdiction and practice in the supreme court, they also apply to ordinary appeals to the court of appeals. Savely v. Phillips, 25 Tenn. App. 654, 166 S.W.2d 780, 1940 Tenn. App. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1940); Lacy v. Rymer, 28 Tenn. App. 180, 187 S.W.2d 653, 1944 Tenn. App. LEXIS 74 (1945).

2. Construction With Other Sections.

When this section and § 16-3-209 are read together their meaning is unquestionably this: That appeals should generally be taken to the next term succeeding the time at which an appeal is granted, and that they shall stand for hearing at that succeeding term; but that an appellant has the option to appeal to the present or current term of the court and may have a hearing at that term upon giving five days' notice of that desire to his adversary. Savely v. Phillips, 25 Tenn. App. 654, 166 S.W.2d 780, 1940 Tenn. App. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1940).

3. Term of Appeal.

Although appeals should generally be taken to the next term succeeding the time at which an appeal is granted, and they shall stand for hearing at that succeeding term, but an appellant has the option to appeal to the present or current term of the court and may have a hearing at that term upon giving five days' notice of that desire to his adversary. Savely v. Phillips, 25 Tenn. App. 654, 166 S.W.2d 780, 1940 Tenn. App. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1940).

This section impliedly requires or at least suggests that appeals to the supreme court should be to the succeeding term. Savely v. Phillips, 25 Tenn. App. 654, 166 S.W.2d 780, 1940 Tenn. App. LEXIS 95 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1940).

This section and § 16-3-209 mean that appeal should generally be taken to the next term succeeding the time at which the appeal is granted and shall stand for hearing at that succeeding term, but an appellant has the option to appeal to the present or current term of the court and may have a hearing at that term upon giving the five days' notice. Grissom v. H. K. Ferguson Co., 205 Tenn. 580, 329 S.W.2d 816, 1959 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1959).

4. Dismissal.

5. —Motion to Dismiss.

Where a decree is rendered against the complainant, and he appeals to the supreme court, he will not be permitted in that court to dismiss his bill upon motion. The appeal only may be dismissed. Stone v. Huggins, 1 Shan. 564 (1876).

6. —Delay.

Appeal was dismissed for delay in filing assignments of error and brief where appellant did not file same until three days before hearing date though notified by clerk of hearing date 53 days prior thereto. State ex rel. Pennington v. Bailey, 196 Tenn. 285, 265 S.W.2d 882, 1954 Tenn. LEXIS 376 (1954).

If after the record is filed the clerk sets the case for hearing at the current term instead of the succeeding term and counsel fails to object to the hearing at that time, after proper notice is given by the clerk, counsel will be considered as having waived the right to object to the setting at the current term and will be required to comply with the rules of court concerning filing of assignments of error. Grissom v. H. K. Ferguson Co., 205 Tenn. 580, 329 S.W.2d 816, 1959 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1959).

If appeal was filed and case was set for hearing in the same term but assignments of error were not filed within the time required by supreme court rule, fact that after motion of adversary to dismiss for failure to properly file the appellant filed the record for a writ of error and executed and filed bond with the clerk and re-filed the assignments of error did not cure the failure to file within the required time in the first instance. Grissom v. H. K. Ferguson Co., 205 Tenn. 580, 329 S.W.2d 816, 1959 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1959).

16-3-209. Appeal during term.

An appeal, appeal in the nature of a writ of error, or writ of error may be prosecuted from any final judgment or decree, rendered in an inferior court during the term of the supreme court, the record being filed in the court, and the opposite party, or the opposite party's counsel, notified five (5) days before the hearing.

Code 1858, § 4515 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 19); Shan., § 6350; Code 1932, § 10652; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-313.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 51-58, 218.

Cited: Tipton v. Tipton, 118 Tenn. 691, 104 S.W. 237, 1907 Tenn. LEXIS 71 (1907).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. “Hearing” — Meaning.

The word “hearing” means the regular hearing and does not apply to the application for a writ of error. A. J. White & Co. v. Bettis & Capps, 52 Tenn. 374, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 271 (1871).

2. Time for Notice.

The notice is intended to be given five days or more before the regular hearing of the cause and not the hearing of the application for writ of error. A. J. White & Co. v. Bettis & Capps, 52 Tenn. 374, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 271 (1871).

3. Appeal to Next Term — Dismissal at Pending Term.

An appeal prayed, granted, and perfected to the next term of the supreme court, when the court is in session in that division of the state where granted, may be dismissed for good cause shown, at the term of the supreme court then being held. Pond v. Trigg, 52 Tenn. 532, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 285 (1871).

16-3-210. Scheduling of districts.

The court may class the judicial districts to set the causes from each district for trial on certain weeks of the term, and make publication of the classes before the beginning of the term.

Code 1858, § 4505; Shan., § 6338; mod. Code 1932, § 10640; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-314.

16-3-211. Order of counties in districts.

The supreme court, except as otherwise provided, shall take up and try the cases from the different counties in a judicial district in the order in which the counties are named in the section of chapter 2 of this title that prescribes the times of holding court in the judicial district; and when the business of a county is taken up, it shall be argued before passing to the business of another county, unless postponed for satisfactory reasons to the court.

Acts 1868-1869, ch. 28, § 4; Shan., § 6339; mod. Code 1932, § 10641; modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-315.

16-3-212. Special personnel for expedition of post-conviction proceedings in capital cases.

The supreme court is authorized to employ, reassign or contract with individuals utilizing special funds appropriated solely for the purpose of providing prompt and fair adjudication of post-conviction proceedings in capital sentence cases, including authority to assign the additional personnel the duties of personnel reassigned to the post-conviction cases. In no event shall the employment, contract or expenditures under this authority extend beyond a two-year period.

Acts 1993, ch. 472, § 4.

Cross-References. Appropriation of funds, § 16-3-806.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Review of Order of Special Assignment.

The court of criminal appeals did not have jurisdiction to review the propriety of an order of the supreme court specially designating a judge to hear a post-conviction case. Thompson v. State, 958 S.W.2d 156, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 522 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997).

Part 3
Terms

16-3-301. Duration of terms.

It is the duty of the judges of the supreme court to hold its terms at the different places as designated by law, until all the causes are determined or otherwise disposed of, or until it becomes necessary to adjourn to hold court at another point.

Code 1858, § 4510 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 6); Shan., § 6344; Code 1932, § 10646; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-316.

Cross-References. Places where supreme court to hold court, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 2.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 51.

16-3-302. Adjourned terms.

The court may sit upon its own adjournment, and hold its term at any time, for the purpose of hearing and deciding unfinished business.

Code 1858, § 4511 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 6); Shan., § 6345; Code 1932, § 10647; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-317.

16-3-303. Adjournment from day to day.

  1. Any judge in attendance at any time may adjourn court, in the absence of the other judges, from day to day, until they are able to attend.
  2. The clerk or sheriff may also adjourn the court from day to day, for one (1) week at the first of the term, if no judge attends.

Code 1858, §§ 4506, 4507 (deriv. Acts 1817, ch. 199, § 4); Shan., §§ 6340, 6341; Code 1932, §§ 10642, 10643; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-318.

16-3-304. Adjournment to court in course.

  1. The clerk, at the expiration of the week  specified in § 16-3-303, or the single judge in attendance in the case mentioned in § 16-3-303(a), if satisfied that a quorum cannot be had, may adjourn to the court in course.
  2. Adjournment works no discontinuance in any case, but the business stands over until the next term, and may then be disposed of, and all process, recognizances, or other obligations enforced as if no continuance had been made.

Code 1858, §§ 4508, 4509; Shan., §§ 6342, 6343; Code 1932, §§ 10644, 10645; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-319.

16-3-305. Orders opening and closing terms.

The court has the power, by an order signed by three (3) of its members and forwarded to the clerk at any of the places where its sessions are required to be held, to open any term of the court at such place, without the attendance of the judges of the court, and likewise an order of adjournment or any other order, judgment or decree, signed by three (3) of the judges, may be entered in the absence of the members of the court. The signed orders shall be entered by the clerk on the minutes of the court, and shall have the effect of signed minute orders from the time received and filed by the clerk. The signed orders shall be filed and preserved by the clerk receiving them, until compared with the minutes by the court, and the minutes shall be examined and signed by the court at least once every thirty (30) days.

Acts 1915, ch. 95, § 2; Shan., § 135a2; Code 1932, § 155; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-320.

Law Reviews.

Tennessee Criminal Law: An Overview of the Courts and a Compendium of Tennessee Criminal Procedure (Michael R. Tilley), 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 90.

16-3-306. Continuation of terms — Concurrent terms.

Every term of the court when opened shall remain open until an order of adjournment is entered, and it shall be lawful for the terms of court in all the grand divisions to be open and running concurrently.

Acts 1915, ch. 95, § 3; Shan., § 135a3; Code 1932, § 156; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-321.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

16-3-307. Rules for terms and transfers.

The court is empowered to make all necessary rules to carry out the purposes of §§ 16-2-104, 16-3-305, and 16-3-306, and to expedite the hearing of cases.

Acts 1915, ch. 95, § 4; Shan., § 135a4; Code 1932, § 157; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-322.

16-3-308. Special term.

The judges of the supreme court have the power to appoint and hold a special term, upon giving twenty (20) days' notice of the time in some newspaper in the division in which the court is held, for the trial of causes that they deem essential to the public interest.

Acts 1868-1869, ch. 28, § 2; Shan., § 6346; Code 1932, § 10648; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-323.

Cited: Grissom v. H. K. Ferguson Co., 205 Tenn. 580, 329 S.W.2d 816, 1959 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1959).

Part 4
Rule Making

16-3-401. Supreme court rules of practice.

The supreme court may make rules of practice for the better disposal of business before it.

Code 1858, § 4504 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 3, § 19); Shan., § 6337; Code 1932, § 10638; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-311.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 101.

Law Reviews.

Discovery - Thomas v. Oldfield: Protecting the Necessary Boundaries of Discovery While Recognizing the Realities of Modern Litigation (Jason G. McCuistion), 40 U. Mem. L. Rev. 485 (2009).

Cross-References. Delinquency in student loan repayment, § 23-3-111.

Law Reviews.

The Theoretical Foundations of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, I. Introduction (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 45 Tenn. L. Rev. 162.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Nature and Scope of Power of Court.

The supreme court has the power to adopt all rules and orders necessary and proper to make effective its appellate jurisdiction and to enforce its judgments, and it has the power to make and establish a rule, when a case arises to which there is no rule then in use that applies. Foster v. Burem, 48 Tenn. 783, 1870 Tenn. LEXIS 148 (1870); Newman v. Justices of Scott County, 48 Tenn. 787, 1870 Tenn. LEXIS 149 (1870); Lynn v. Polk, 76 Tenn. 328, 1881 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1881); Western Union Tel. Co. v. Ordway, Gordon & McGuire, 76 Tenn. 558, 1881 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1881); Memphis S. R. Co. v. Johnson, 114 Tenn. 632, 88 S.W. 169, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1905).

The supreme court has both the inherent power and statutory authority to make and enforce reasonable rules of practice. Denton v. Woods, 86 Tenn. 37, 5 S.W. 489, 1887 Tenn. LEXIS 21 (1887); Wood v. Frazier, 86 Tenn. 500, 8 S.W. 148, 1888 Tenn. LEXIS 2 (1888); Cheatham v. Pearce, 89 Tenn. 668, 15 S.W. 1080, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 90 (1891); Memphis S. R. Co. v. Johnson, 114 Tenn. 632, 88 S.W. 169, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1905).

The court has the power to adopt rules for carrying out and enforcing its judgments and orders, but which cannot be exercised in contravention of any constitutional provision or statute restricting or regulating its jurisdiction. Chaffin v. Robinson, 187 Tenn. 125, 213 S.W.2d 32, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 418 (1948).

It is clearly implicit in this part that no court other than the supreme court can make rules governing the procedure in other courts. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

2. Right to Require Assignment of Errors.

Rule of the supreme court requiring of appellants assignments of error (85 Tenn. 757, appendix) was held to be a reasonable rule of practice. Denton v. Woods, 86 Tenn. 37, 5 S.W. 489, 1887 Tenn. LEXIS 21 (1887); Wood v. Frazier, 86 Tenn. 500, 8 S.W. 148, 1888 Tenn. LEXIS 2 (1888); Cheatham v. Pearce, 89 Tenn. 668, 15 S.W. 1080, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 90 (1891); Memphis S. R. Co. v. Johnson, 114 Tenn. 632, 88 S.W. 169, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1905).

The supreme court, by rule, may provide that the errors assignable upon the action of the trial judge in refusing a new trial in the circuit or law court, shall be limited to such grounds for a new trial as were set out in the motion for that purpose in the trial court, regardless of the rules of that court. Memphis S. R. Co. v. Johnson, 114 Tenn. 632, 88 S.W. 169, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1905); Jacks v. Williams-Robinson Lumber Co., 125 Tenn. 123, 140 S.W. 1066, 1911 Tenn. LEXIS 12 (Tenn. Sep. 1911).

3. Advisory Commissions.

The statutory scheme of rule making contemplates that the supreme court will make appropriate use of the advisory commissions authorized by § 16-3-601. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 82-86.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 170, 457.

Courts 80(1).

16-3-402. Other courts — General rules of practice.

The supreme court has the power to prescribe by general rules the forms of process, writs, pleadings and motions, and the practice and procedure in all of the courts of this state in all civil and criminal suits, actions and proceedings.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 1; 1975, ch. 376, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-112.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 22 Tenn. Juris., Rules of Court, § 2.

Law Reviews.

Discovery - Thomas v. Oldfield: Protecting the Necessary Boundaries of Discovery While Recognizing the Realities of Modern Litigation (Jason G. McCuistion), 40 U. Mem. L. Rev. 485 (2009).

Judicial Notice in Tennessee (Robert Banks, Jr. and Elizabeth T. Collins), 21 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 431 (1991).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Exclusive Authority of Court.

It is clearly implicit in this part that no court other than the supreme court can make rules governing the procedure in other courts. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

3. Subject Matter Jurisdiction.

Chancery court erred in exercising subject matter jurisdiction over a bail bond company's action for injunctive relief and declaratory judgment declaring proposed Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies unenforceable, unconstitutional, and in violation of the law because it did not have subject matter jurisdiction to entertain an action for declaratory or injunctive relief regarding the validity of local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

Because a bail bond company's underlying claim for injunctive relief regarding Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies could not be brought in chancery court, the chancery court could not exercise subject matter jurisdiction over the declaratory judgment aspect of the case either; the courts should not assume that subject matter jurisdiction existed based on the fact that the issue was not addressed. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

To allow the chancery court to review the validity or enjoin the enforcement of the local rules of the criminal court would interfere with the inherent power of the criminal court to administer its affairs and impose reasonable regulations regarding the making of bonds; the statutes and rules do not authorize chancery court review of the local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

Collateral References. Courts 80(1).

16-3-403. Rules not to affect substantive rights — Consistency with constitutions.

The rules prescribed by the supreme court pursuant to § 16-3-402 shall not abridge, enlarge or modify any substantive right, and shall be consistent with the constitutions of the United States and Tennessee.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 2; T.C.A., § 16-113.

Law Reviews.

Champerty as We Know It (R. D. Cox), 13 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 139 (1983).

Cited: State v. Ellis, 598 S.W.2d 826, 1980 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 311 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1980); State v. Pettus, 986 S.W.2d 540, 1999 Tenn. LEXIS 44 (Tenn. 1999); Corum v. Holston Health & Rehab. Ctr., 104 S.W.3d 451, 2003 Tenn. LEXIS 338 (Tenn. 2003).

16-3-404. Effective date of rules — Approval of rules by general assembly.

The supreme court shall fix the effective date of all its rules; provided, that the rules shall not take effect until they have been reported to the general assembly by the chief justice at or after the beginning of a regular session of the general assembly, but not later than February 1 during the session, and until they have been approved by resolutions of both the house of representatives and the senate.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 3; T.C.A., § 16-114; Acts 1985, ch. 24, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 22 Tenn. Juris., Rules of Court, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Theoretical Foundations of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, I. Introduction (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 45 Tenn. L. Rev. 162.

Cited: State v. Ellis, 598 S.W.2d 826, 1980 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 311 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1980); Malone v. State, 707 S.W.2d 541, 1985 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 3258 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1985); Lock v. National Union Fire Ins. Co., 809 S.W.2d 483, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 154 (Tenn. 1991); Alley v. State, 958 S.W.2d 138, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 428 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997); State v. Brewer, 989 S.W.2d 349, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 989 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997); Memphis Planned Parenthood, Inc. v. Sundquist, 175 F.3d 456, 1999 FED App. 162P, 1999 U.S. App. LEXIS 8481 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1999).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Exclusive Authority of Court.

It is clearly implicit in this part that no court other than the supreme court can make rules governing the procedure in other courts. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

16-3-405. Publication of rules.

All rules adopted by the supreme court shall be published in the Tennessee Code Annotated and may be publicized both before and after becoming effective in a manner that the supreme court deems appropriate.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 4; T.C.A., § 16-115.

Compiler's Notes. The Supreme Court Rules are published in the Tennessee Court Rules Annotated, which is updated by replacement volumes in July of each year and are updated by supplementation once each year.

Cross-References. Publication of Tennessee Code Annotated, § 1-1-105.

16-3-406. Laws in conflict with rules nullified.

After the rules have become effective, all laws in conflict with the rules shall be of no further force or effect.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 5; T.C.A., § 16-116.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in the Advisory Commission Comments under T.R.A.P. 13.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 63; 22 Tenn. Juris., Rules of Court, § 2.

Tennessee Law of Evidence (2nd ed., Cohen, Paine and Sheppeard), §§ 605.1, 610.1.

Law Reviews.

The Procedural Details of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, II. Initiation of An Appeal (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 4.

Cited: State v. Ellis, 598 S.W.2d 826, 1980 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 311 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1980); Haynes v. McKenzie Memorial Hospital, 667 S.W.2d 497, 1984 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3274 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1984); Lock v. National Union Fire Ins. Co., 809 S.W.2d 483, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 154 (Tenn. 1991); Arnold v. City of Chattanooga, 19 S.W.3d 779, 1999 Tenn. App. LEXIS 765 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1999); State v. West, 19 S.W.3d 753, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 244 (Tenn. 2000); Fields v. State, 40 S.W.3d 450, 2001 Tenn. LEXIS 110 (Tenn. 2001); State v. Mallard, 40 S.W.3d 473, 2001 Tenn. LEXIS 235 (Tenn. 2001); Corum v. Holston Health & Rehab. Ctr., 104 S.W.3d 451, 2003 Tenn. LEXIS 338 (Tenn. 2003); The Tennessean v. Tenn. Dep't of Pers., — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 267 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 27, 2007); Rajvongs v. Wright, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 393 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 18, 2012); Webb v. Roberson, — S.W.3d —, 2013 Tenn. App. LEXIS 261 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 17, 2013).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

Conflicts between provisions of the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure and provisions of the Tennessee Code Annotated which cannot be harmoniously construed will be resolved in favor of the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure. Mid-South Pavers, Inc. v. Arnco Constr., Inc., 771 S.W.2d 420, 1989 Tenn. App. LEXIS 12 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1989).

Dismissal of a parent's untimely appeal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction when the parent failed to file an appeal within ten days of the general sessions court's order of protection, as required by statute, was appropriate because the writ of error which the parent filed after the expiration of the time limit was no longer a viable method of appeal in the State of Tennessee. Furthermore, statutes providing for a period of more than ten days to file an appeal were not applicable to the matter. New v. Dumitrache, — S.W.3d —, 2020 Tenn. LEXIS 264 (Tenn. June 29, 2020).

2. Section Applied.

This section was applied in: Bush v. Bradshaw, 615 S.W.2d 157, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 431 (Tenn. 1981).

16-3-407. Additional or supplementary rules of other courts.

Each of the other courts of this state may adopt additional or supplementary rules of practice and procedure not inconsistent with or in conflict with the rules prescribed by the supreme court.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 6; T.C.A., § 16-117.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 22 Tenn. Juris., Rules of Court, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

The Tennessee Court System — The County Court, 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 419.

Attorney General Opinions. It is not unauthorized practice of law for a court to develop form petitions and orders and to direct non-attorney members of the clerk's office to make petitions available for use by pro se litigants seeking to have their driving privileges restored, OAG 04-071 (4/21/04).

Cited: State v. Huskins, 989 S.W.2d 735, 1998 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 1020 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1998); Metropolitan Gov't of Nashville v. Cuozzo, — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 498 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 25, 2008).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

The trial courts of the state have authority to make reasonable rules of practice applicable to such courts including rules as to motions for new trials so long as such rules are not inconsistent with the law. Richie v. Liberty Cash Grocers, Inc., 63 Tenn. App. 311, 471 S.W.2d 559, 1971 Tenn. App. LEXIS 261 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1971).

When issues arise for which no procedure is otherwise specifically prescribed, trial courts have the inherent power to adopt appropriate rules of procedure to address the issues. State v. Reid, 981 S.W.2d 166, 1998 Tenn. LEXIS 695 (Tenn. 1998).

Because a bail bond company's underlying claim for injunctive relief regarding Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies could not be brought in chancery court, the chancery court could not exercise subject matter jurisdiction over the declaratory judgment aspect of the case either; the courts should not assume that subject matter jurisdiction existed based on the fact that the issue was not addressed. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

To allow the chancery court to review the validity or enjoin the enforcement of the local rules of the criminal court would interfere with the inherent power of the criminal court to administer its affairs and impose reasonable regulations regarding the making of bonds; the statutes and rules do not authorize chancery court review of the local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

Chancery court erred in exercising subject matter jurisdiction over a bail bond company's action for injunctive relief and declaratory judgment declaring proposed Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies unenforceable, unconstitutional, and in violation of the law because it did not have subject matter jurisdiction to entertain an action for declaratory or injunctive relief regarding the validity of local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

2. Exclusive Authority of Court.

It is clearly implicit in this part that no court other than the supreme court can make rules governing the procedure in other courts. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

3. Modification of Rules.

Although the court of appeals had the power to modify its rules they must not conflict with the rules of the supreme court. Ford Motor Co. v. Moulton, 511 S.W.2d 690, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 498 (Tenn. 1974).

4. Judicial Notice of Rules by Appellate Court.

Supreme court cannot judicially know rules of trial court. Shettles v. State, 209 Tenn. 157, 352 S.W.2d 1, 1961 Tenn. LEXIS 359 (1961).

The court of appeals cannot judicially know the rules established by the circuit courts and will not notice them until they are proved below and incorporated into the bill of exceptions. Talley v. Talley, 51 Tenn. App. 622, 371 S.W.2d 152, 1962 Tenn. App. LEXIS 126 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1962).

5. Specific Rules.

6. —Request for Jury.

Local rule requiring party wanting a jury to demand it in his pleading or on the first day of the term at which the cause set for trial is reasonable and proper. Hackman v. Harris, 225 Tenn. 645, 475 S.W.2d 175, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 403 (1972).

7. —Substitute Service of Process.

Upon motion, supported by affidavit, trial judges may, in the exercise of sound discretion, order in lieu of publication, that the clerk mail a copy of the complaint and summons by return receipt registered mail to defendant's last known address and post a copy of the summons at three public places in the county; that the clerk make an entry on the rule docket so showing, and note thereon and file with the record the document returned, and such a method of substitute service will satisfy both federal and state due process requirements. Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979).

8. —Bail Bondsmen.

Suspension of a bonding company for violating a local rule of court requiring an agent of the bonding company to be present at court appearances of defendants for whom the bonding company served as surety was appropriate because the local rule did not conflict with any statute and was not arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable. The Tennessee statute pertaining to bonding companies was supplemental to other laws providing for and regulating professional bail bondsmen and did not establish exclusive grounds for suspension. In re Cumberland Bail Bonding, 599 S.W.3d 17, 2020 Tenn. LEXIS 143 (Tenn. Apr. 6, 2020).

16-3-408. Courts — Facsimile transmission of documents — Rules and procedures.

The supreme court is urged to develop court rules and procedures to control the process of courts using fax transmissions of documents. The court rules and procedures should provide for the following:

  1. The type of document that may be faxed;
  2. The length of restriction, if any, of a document that may be faxed;
  3. The type of equipment and paper that must be used by clerks' offices;
  4. The amount, if any, of fees to be charged for the faxing of documents;
  5. The payment of regular filing fees of the court;
  6. The time of filing of a faxed document;
  7. Requirements, if any, for filing of original documents or original signatures;
  8. Requirements, if any, for maintenance of transmittal reports of faxed documents; and
  9. Any other rule or procedure the court deems appropriate.

Acts 1991, ch. 146, § 3.

Cross-References. Facsimile transmissions, court business and filings, § 16-1-113.

Part 5
Supervision of Inferior Courts

16-3-501. Inferior courts — Supervisory control.

In order to ensure the harmonious, efficient and uniform operation of the judicial system of the state, the supreme court is granted and clothed with general supervisory control over all the inferior courts of the state.

Acts 1970, ch. 422, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-330.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 11, § VII and Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 27, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Attorney General Opinions. The Tennessee supreme court has the authority to require general sessions courts to collect and report statistical and other data to the administrative office of the courts concerning filing and disposition of driving while intoxicated cases and to make such information available to the department of safety or to any other department or agency of state government, OAG 01-054 (4/9/01).

Because an airport authority has discretion to determine the fees applicable to businesses operating on its property when it enters into contracts or other agreements with those businesses, it may impose a fuel flowage fee as part of those agreements. An airport authority may enter into agreements that require non-profit entities to pay fuel flowage fees. OAG 18-32, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 31 (7/20/2018).

The Tennessee Constitution gives the Legislature the exclusive authority to create inferior courts, including a business court.  The Tennessee Supreme Court may create a business docket in an inferior court within the limits established by the Tennessee Constitution.  The judges assigned to the business court or to the business docket must be elected in accordance with the Tennessee Constitution. OAG 18-33, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 32 (7/30/2018).

Cited: Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979); State v. Brown, 644 S.W.2d 418, 1982 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 398 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1982); Housler v. State, 749 S.W.2d 758, 1988 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 216 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1988); Evans v. Wilson, 776 S.W.2d 939, 1989 Tenn. LEXIS 394 (Tenn. 1989); Ferrell v. Cigna Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co., 33 S.W.3d 731, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 686 (Tenn. 2000); State v. Daniel, — S.W.3d —, 2006 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 834 (Tenn. Crim. App. Oct. 30, 2006); In re Bell, 344 S.W.3d 304, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 577 (Tenn. June 10, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Generally.

Although the statute generally applies to all personnel in state service, it does not apply to the judicial branch of state government including, but not limited to, employees of the administrative office of the courts; thus, in this area, the supreme court retains exclusive supervisory authority to establish and interpret personnel policies applicable to Judicial Department employees, including the employment status of a trial judge's secretarial assistant. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

16-3-502. Supervisory procedures.

In addition to other constitutional, statutory and inherent power, but not restrictive thereof, the supreme court may:

  1. Designate the administrative director of the courts as the chief administrative officer of the courts of the state;
  2. Direct the administrative director of the courts to take all action or to perform duties that are necessary for the orderly administration of justice within the state, whether or not herein or elsewhere enumerated;
  3. Direct the administrative director of the courts to provide administrative support to all of the courts of the state through an administrative office of the courts in order to:
    1. Designate and assign temporarily any judge or chancellor to hold or sit as a member of any court, of comparable dignity or equal or higher level, for any good and sufficient reason;
    2. Maintain a roster of retired judges who are willing and able to undertake special duties from time to time and to designate or assign them appropriate judicial duties;
    3. Make a careful and continuing survey of the dockets of the circuit, criminal, chancery and other similar courts of record, and to report at periodic intervals to the court, and annually to the general assembly, information that is public record;
    4. Take affirmative and appropriate action to correct and alleviate any imbalance in caseloads among the various judicial districts of the state; and
    5. Take affirmative and appropriate action to correct or alleviate any condition or situation adversely affecting the administration of justice within the state;
  4. Adopt, upon the recommendation of the administrative director of the courts, an annual plan providing for the orientation of newly elected or appointed judges of trial or appellate courts of record and for the appropriate continuing legal education and training of the judges; and
  5. Establish and implement a policy concerning the prevention of sexual harassment. This policy shall include training workshops and the establishment of a hearing procedure.

Acts 1970, ch. 422, § 2; T.C.A., § 16-331; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 23; 1993, ch. 65, § 1; 1993, ch. 307, § 3.

Cross-References. Department of personnel, sexual harassment workshops, § 4-3-1703.

Orientation and continuing training and education of trial and appellate judges, § 16-3-803.

Posting of sexual harassment policy by state entities, § 4-3-124.

Supervision of judicial system, Tenn. R. Sup. Ct. 11.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 11, §§ I and VII.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.12.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 16 Tenn. Juris., Judges, § 7.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Attorney General Opinions. Constitutionality of legislation governing ethical standards for certain attorneys, OAG 87-51 (3/30/87).

Constitutionality of legislation relating to appointment of special judges, OAG 99-068 (3/18/99).

The Tennessee supreme court has the authority to require general sessions courts to collect and report statistical and other data to the administrative office of the courts concerning filing and disposition of driving while intoxicated cases and to make such information available to the department of safety or to any other department or agency of state government, OAG 01-054 (4/9/01).

Proposed legislation that gives the Tennessee Supreme Court the authority to appoint any former judge or justice who has at least one year of judicial service to serve as “a senior judge to hear complex commercial disputes” raises significant constitutional concerns. Unlike existing law, the proposed legislation would permit a former judge who has minimal judicial experience and who has never won a judicial election to serve in a judicial capacity. And the appointment would not be temporary but would be for a four-year term, renewable without limitation at the discretion of the Supreme Court. The election requirement of article VI, section 4 is not absolute, as demonstrated by the several provisions that allow unelected individuals to exercise judicial authority for a limited time or limited purpose, but the proposed legislation would undermine the election requirement to an extent not provided in existing law.  However, the proposed legislation that would allow the Supreme Court to transfer complex commercial cases from the assigned trial court judge to a senior business judge does itself not raise constitutional concerns. It constitutes a specific grant of authority to transfer cases in furtherance of the Supreme Court’s existing supervisory authority. OAG 18-14, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 15 (3/23/2018).

Because an airport authority has discretion to determine the fees applicable to businesses operating on its property when it enters into contracts or other agreements with those businesses, it may impose a fuel flowage fee as part of those agreements. An airport authority may enter into agreements that require non-profit entities to pay fuel flowage fees. OAG 18-32, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 31 (7/20/2018).

The Tennessee Constitution gives the Legislature the exclusive authority to create inferior courts, including a business court.  The Tennessee Supreme Court may create a business docket in an inferior court within the limits established by the Tennessee Constitution.  The judges assigned to the business court or to the business docket must be elected in accordance with the Tennessee Constitution. OAG 18-33, 2018 Tenn. AG LEXIS 32 (7/30/2018).

Cited: Cantor v. Brading, 494 S.W.2d 139, 1973 Tenn. App. LEXIS 250 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1973); Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979); State v. Brown, 644 S.W.2d 418, 1982 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 398 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1982); Johnson v. State, 797 S.W.2d 578, 1990 Tenn. LEXIS 314 (Tenn. 1990); State v. Bates, 804 S.W.2d 868, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 44 (Tenn. 1991); Maxwell Med., Inc. v. Chumley, 282 S.W.3d 893, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 542 (Tenn. Ct. App. Sept. 22, 2008); In re Bell, 344 S.W.3d 304, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 577 (Tenn. June 10, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Exercise of Power.

Supreme court under its supervisory jurisdiction will not permit an abuse of legal process for the purpose of harassment or delay and will not permit a litigant to deliberately harass public officials or delay the transaction of public business. Mitchell v. Carmichael, 522 S.W.2d 869, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 727 (Tenn. 1975).

As the supreme court may require more of its officers than the legislature may prescribe in the exercise of its public power, former § 29-110, which provided that the license to practice law was not subject to membership in any organization, was an unconstitutional interference with the court's power, violating Tenn. Const., art. II, §§ 1, 2, and subdivisions (5) and (6) of this section. Petition of Tennessee Bar Asso., 532 S.W.2d 224, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 609 (Tenn. 1975).

2. Contract of Employment.

Inclusion of funds in the Tennessee Judicial Department's budget for the purpose of compensating trial judge secretarial assistants does not give rise to an implied annual contract of employment for any particular trial judge secretarial assistant; moreover, the role of the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) in performing human resources functions for the Judicial Department does not give rise to implied contracts between the AOC and Judicial Department employees. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

3. Administrative Office of the Courts.

Despite the many critically important functions it provides the Judicial Department, the Administrative Office of the Courts is not authorized to hire, supervise, or remove a trial judge's secretarial assistant; this authority resides in the trial judge. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

16-3-503. Inherent power of court.

The general assembly declares that this part is declaratory of the common law as it existed at the time of the adoption of the constitution of Tennessee and of the power inherent in a court of last resort.

Acts 1970, ch. 422, § 3; T.C.A., § 16-332.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 11, § VII.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Cited: Cantor v. Brading, 494 S.W.2d 139, 1973 Tenn. App. LEXIS 250 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1973); Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979); State v. Brown, 644 S.W.2d 418, 1982 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 398 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1982); In re Burson, 909 S.W.2d 768, 1995 Tenn. LEXIS 509 (Tenn. 1995).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Modification of Common Law Rules.

The court has not only the power, but the duty, to consider, adapt, and modify common law rules. Heck Van Tran v. State, 6 S.W.3d 257, 1999 Tenn. LEXIS 602 (Tenn. 1999), cert. denied, Heck Van Tran v. Tennessee, 529 U.S. 1091, 120 S. Ct. 1728, 146 L. Ed. 2d 648, 2000 U.S. LEXIS 2938 (2000).

2. Supreme Court.

Although the statute generally applies to all personnel in state service, it does not apply to the judicial branch of state government including, but not limited to, employees of the administrative office of the courts; thus, in this area, the supreme court retains exclusive supervisory authority to establish and interpret personnel policies applicable to Judicial Department employees, including the employment status of a trial judge's secretarial assistant. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

16-3-504. Plenary and discretionary powers.

This part shall constitute a broad conference of full, plenary and discretionary power upon the supreme court.

Acts 1970, ch. 422, § 4; T.C.A., § 16-333.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 11, § VII.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Cited: Dungan v. Dungan, 579 S.W.2d 183, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1979); State v. Brown, 644 S.W.2d 418, 1982 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 398 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1982); In re Burson, 909 S.W.2d 768, 1995 Tenn. LEXIS 509 (Tenn. 1995); Heck Van Tran v. State, 6 S.W.3d 257, 1999 Tenn. LEXIS 602 (Tenn. 1999); State v. Daniel, — S.W.3d —, 2006 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 834 (Tenn. Crim. App. Oct. 30, 2006).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Supreme Court.

Although the statute generally applies to all personnel in state service, it does not apply to the judicial branch of state government including, but not limited to, employees of the administrative office of the courts; thus, in this area, the supreme court retains exclusive supervisory authority to establish and interpret personnel policies applicable to Judicial Department employees, including the employment status of a trial judge's secretarial assistant. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

Part 6
Advisory Commission on Rules

16-3-601. Advisory commission on rules of practice and procedure.

  1. There shall be an advisory commission whose members shall be appointed by the supreme court and whose duty shall be to advise the supreme court from time to time respecting the rules of practice and procedure.
  2. Each member shall serve for a term of three (3) years and members shall be eligible for reappointment; provided, that members shall not be appointed for more than three (3) successive terms.
  3. No compensation shall be paid to any of the members; however, the expenses necessarily incurred by the members in the accomplishment of the purposes of the commission, as set out in this part, shall be reimbursable when statements of expenses are submitted pursuant to policies and guidelines promulgated by the supreme court.
  4. The advisory commission has the authority to employ, subject to the approval of the administrative director of the courts and commissioner of finance and administration, legal, clerical and other assistance that may be necessary to the efficient discharge of its duties.

Acts 1965, ch. 227, § 7; 1975, ch. 376, §§ 2, 4; T.C.A., § 16-118; Acts 1993, ch. 66, § 19; 1993, ch. 196, § 2; 2001, ch. 257, §§ 1-3.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Cited: Webb v. Nashville Area Habitat for Humanity, Inc., 346 S.W.3d 422, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 623 (Tenn. July 21, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Appropriate Use Contemplated.

The statutory scheme of rule making contemplates that the supreme court will make appropriate use of the advisory commissions authorized by this section. State v. Best, 614 S.W.2d 791, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 437 (Tenn. 1981).

Part 7
Court Buildings Commissions

16-3-701. Commission to control supreme court building at Nashville.

There is created a commission composed of the chief justice of the supreme court, who shall serve as chair, the presiding judge of the court of appeals or the presiding judge's designee, the presiding judge of the court of criminal appeals or presiding judge's designee, the administrative director of the courts, the clerk of the supreme court, and one (1) other member from the supreme court to be elected by the membership of the supreme court, which commission is vested with authority and jurisdiction to supervise and control the supreme court building at Nashville, to employ all necessary assistants and help for the building, and to make necessary contracts therefor.

Acts 1953, ch. 138, § 1 (Williams, § 1032.3); 1965, ch. 184, § 1; 1975, ch. 73, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-324; Acts 1984, ch. 833, § 1; 1993, ch. 66, § 20; 1994, ch. 897, § 3.

16-3-702. Commission to control court building at Knoxville.

There is created a commission composed of the chief justice of the supreme court, who shall serve as chair, the presiding judge of the court of appeals or the presiding judge's designee, the presiding judge of the court of criminal appeals or the presiding judge's designee, the administrative director of the courts, the clerk of the supreme court, and one (1) other member from the supreme court to be elected by the membership of the supreme court, which commission is vested with authority and jurisdiction to supervise and control the court and office building at Knoxville, and to employ all necessary assistants and help for the building, and make necessary contracts therefor.

Acts 1953, ch. 138, § 1 (Williams, § 1032.3); 1965, ch. 184, § 1; 1975, ch. 73, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-324; Acts 1984, ch. 833, § 2; 1993, ch. 66, § 21; 1994, ch. 897, § 4.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

16-3-703. Commission to control court building at Jackson.

There is created a commission composed of the chief justice of the supreme court, who shall serve as chair, the presiding judge of the court of appeals or the presiding judge's designee, the presiding judge of the court of criminal appeals or the presiding judge's designee, the administrative director of the courts, the clerk of the supreme court, and one (1) other member from the supreme court to be elected by the membership of the supreme court, which commission is vested with the authority and jurisdiction to supervise and control the court and office building at Jackson, and to employ all necessary assistants and help for the building, and make necessary contracts therefor.

Acts 1984, ch. 833, § 3; 1993, ch. 66, § 22; 1994, ch. 897, § 5.

Part 8
Administrative Office of the Courts

16-3-801. Creation — Purpose.

There is created the administrative office of the courts. The purpose of this office is to assist in improving the administration of justice in the state by performing the duties and exercising the powers conferred in this part.

Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 8, §§ 16-3-80116-3-805 (Acts 1963, ch. 86, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 214, § 1; T.C.A. §§ 16-325 — 16-329; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 24; 1992, ch. 651, § 1; 1992, ch. 896, § 1), concerning the executive secretary to the supreme court, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Acts 1993, ch. 66, § 74 provided that it was the intention of the general assembly to change the name of the executive secretary to the supreme court to the administrative director of the courts. In furtherance of that intention, the Tennessee Code Commission was directed to make any other language or stylistic changes in the text of the law which might be necessary to effectuate the change.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Three Quarters of a Century in Judicial Administration (Delmar Karlen), 32 Tenn. L. Rev. 412.

16-3-802. Administrative director — Appointment — Salary.

  1. The supreme court shall appoint the administrative director of the courts, who shall serve as the director of the administrative office of the courts. The administrative director shall serve at the pleasure of the supreme court.
  2. The supreme court shall fix the salary of the administrative director of the courts at an amount not to exceed the salary paid to judges of the court of appeals.

Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 8, §§ 16-3-80116-3-805 (Acts 1963, ch. 86, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 214, § 1; T.C.A. §§ 16-325 — 16-329; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 24; 1992, ch. 651, § 1; 1992, ch. 896, § 1), concerning the executive secretary to the supreme court, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

16-3-803. Administrative director — Powers and duties.

  1. The administrative director of the courts shall work under the supervision and direction of the chief justice and shall, as the chief administrative officer of the state court system, assist the chief justice in the administration of the state court system to the end that litigation may be expedited and the administration of justice improved.
  2. The administrative director of the courts shall attend to duties that may be assigned by the supreme court or chief justice of the supreme court.
    1. Acting in accordance with procedures established pursuant to § 9-6-103, the administrative director of the courts shall annually prepare, approve and submit a budget for the maintenance and operation of the state court system. When the budget for the maintenance and operation of the state court system is submitted to the department of finance and administration, the administrative director of the courts shall also submit copies of the budget to the speaker of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives for referral and consideration by the appropriate standing committees of the general assembly.
    2. The administrative director of the courts shall administer the accounts of the state court system, including all accounts related to the state court system as may be designated by the comptroller of the treasury and the chief justice. The administrative director of the courts shall draw and approve all requisitions for the payment of public moneys appropriated for the maintenance and operation of the state court system, and shall audit claims and prepare vouchers for presentation to the department of finance and administration, including payroll warrants, expense warrants and warrants covering the necessary cost of supplies, materials and other obligations by the various offices with respect to which the administrative director of the courts shall exercise fiscal responsibility.
  3. The administrative director of the courts shall, within budgetary limitations, provide the judges of the trial courts of record with minimum law libraries, the nature and extent of which shall be determined in every instance by the administrative director on the basis of need. All books furnished shall remain the property of the state, and shall be returned to the custody of the administrative director by each judge upon the retirement or expiration of the official duties of the judge.
  4. All functions performed by the administrative director of the courts that involve expenditures of state funds shall be subject to the same auditing procedures by the commissioner of finance and administration and the comptroller of the treasury as required in connection with the expenditure of all other state funds.
    1. The administrative director of the courts shall, within the limit of appropriated funds, prepare for the supreme court's approval an annual judicial education plan providing for the orientation and continuing training and education of all elected or appointed judges of trial and appellate courts of record of this state.
    2. To the extent practicable, the annual judicial education plan shall provide that the orientation programs approved by the supreme court shall be made available to all newly elected or appointed judges of trial and appellate courts of record within one (1) year from the date of their initial appointment or election. The plan shall also provide, to the extent practicable, that all judges of trial and appellate courts of record whose terms exceed three (3) years shall, within two (2) years of the date of their initial election or appointment, be given the opportunity to attend judicial training programs approved by the supreme court.
    3. For the purpose of implementing the annual judicial education plan, the administrative director of the courts, with the approval of the chief justice, may apply for and expend grant funds from whatever source.
    4. The administrative director of the courts is authorized to recommend to the supreme court a plan whereby judges of trial and appellate courts of record who, on September 1, 1984, have not participated in training programs similar to those included in the annual judicial education plan, may be permitted to attend future orientation and training programs for judges made available through the annual plan.
    5. Nothing in this subsection (f) nor in any annual judicial education plan prepared by the administrative director of the courts and approved by the supreme court shall be construed to require judges whose salaries and other related expenses are not paid by state government to participate in any training or orientation program provided for in this subsection (f). With the agreement of appropriate units of local government to pay for the reasonable costs of the orientation and training programs, the administrative director of the courts may authorize judges whose salaries are paid by units of local government to participate in orientation or training programs made available in accordance with the approved annual plan.
  5. The administrative director of the courts shall continuously survey and study the operation of the state court system, the volume and condition of business in the courts of the state, whether of record or not, the procedures employed by those courts, and the quality and responsiveness of all of the courts with regard to the needs of civil litigants and the needs of the criminal justice system throughout the state.
  6. The administrative director of the courts shall establish criteria, develop procedures and implement a Tennessee court information system (TnCIS). The system shall provide an integrated case management and accounting software system addressing the statutory responsibilities of the clerks of the general sessions, chancery, circuit and juvenile courts. The system shall also provide state-wide reporting and data transfer capabilities for the administrative office of the courts (AOC), department of human services, Tennessee bureau of investigation, department of safety and other state agencies determined by the AOC or as statutorily mandated. To ensure comparable data from all courts, the system shall be designed to report cases according to a standard definition of a case as set forth in § 16-1-117.
  7. It is the duty of the administrative office of the courts to collect, develop and maintain uniform statistical information relative to court caseloads in Tennessee. For the purposes of monitoring the operation of the court system, reducing unnecessary delay and assessing the responsiveness of the court system to the needs of litigants, victims of crime and the citizens of the state, the administrative director of the courts shall have the responsibility for annually collecting, compiling, analyzing and publishing caseload statistics pertaining to the court system. It is the responsibility of the administrative director of the courts to develop, define, update and disseminate standard, uniform measures, definitions and criteria for collecting statistics pertaining to the court system. These standards and reporting requirements shall be used for uniform statistical data collection in all courts throughout the state, as established by statute or by the rules of the supreme court.
  8. The administrative director of the courts shall prepare and distribute an annual report reflecting the operation of the courts of the state and highlighting those changes, innovations, or recommendations made or introduced to enhance the effectiveness of the courts.
  9. The administrative director of the courts shall conduct ongoing internal review, analysis and planning for the future needs of the state court system. The analysis shall be designed to devise ways of simplifying court system procedure, expediting the transaction of court system business and correcting weaknesses in the administration of justice.
  10. The administrative director of the courts shall:
    1. File a copy of the supreme court's policies and guidelines governing the reimbursement of expenses for judicial officers with the judiciary committee of the house of representatives, the judiciary committee of the senate, and the finance, ways and means committees of the senate and the house of representatives, the fiscal review committee, the comptroller of the treasury and the commissioner of finance and administration; and
    2. Respond in a timely manner to any appropriate request by these committees or officials for information concerning reimbursements made pursuant to the policies and guidelines.
  11. The administrative director of the courts shall annually prepare and distribute to the judiciary committee of the senate and judiciary committee of the house of representatives:
    1. A report detailing the expenditure of moneys in the civil legal representation of indigents fund; and
    2. A copy of any rules and policies adopted by the supreme court governing the expenditure and application of funds in the civil legal representation of indigents fund.
  12. The administrative office of the courts shall collect, develop and maintain statistical information relative to sentencing in Tennessee. To assist the administrative office of the courts, the clerks of the circuit and criminal courts shall send a copy of each judgment document for a felony conviction to the administrative office of the courts. These copies shall be forwarded to the administrative office of the courts no less than one (1) time each month so that all judgments rendered in one (1) month have been received by the fifteenth day of the following month. When an electronic transfer system is operational and approved by the administrative office of the courts, the judgment document for all felony convictions shall be electronically transmitted to the administrative office of the courts in the same manner required by this subsection (n) for paper copies.
  13. The administrative director of the courts shall administer finances related to the office's control and supervision of the existing state law libraries, including the:
    1. Operation and maintenance of the libraries;
    2. Preparation of warrants for the payment of obligations related to the operation and maintenance of the libraries; and
    3. Recording of all transactions related to the administration of such finances in accordance with the laws and regulations governing state fiscal operations.

Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2; 1993, ch. 196, § 10; 1994, ch. 1005, § 1; 1995, ch. 550, § 3; 1999, ch. 486, § 1; 2001, ch. 408, §§ 1-3; 2002, ch. 791, § 1; 2013, ch. 236, § 45; 2016, ch. 619, § 4; 2019, ch. 345, § 21; 2019, ch. 420, §§ 9, 10.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 8, §§ 16-3-80116-3-805 (Acts 1963, ch. 86, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 214, § 1; T.C.A. §§ 16-325 — 16-329; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 24; 1992, ch. 651, § 1; 1992, ch. 896, § 1), concerning the executive secretary to the supreme court, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment substituted “the civil justice committee of the house of representatives, the judiciary committee of the senate, and” for “the judiciary committees and” in (l )(1); and substituted “the judiciary committee of the senate and civil justice committee of the house of representatives” for “the judiciary committees of the senate and the house of representatives” at the end of the introductory paragraph in (m).

The 2016 amendment added (o).

The 2019 amendment by ch. 345 substituted “judiciary” for “civil justice” preceding “committee of the house” in (l )(1) and (m).

The 2019 amendment by ch. 420, rewrote (b) which read: “The administrative director of the courts shall serve as secretary to the judicial council, shall perform those duties enumerated in § 16-3-502, and shall attend to other duties that may be assigned by the supreme court or chief justice of the supreme court. As secretary to the judicial council, the administrative director of the courts shall provide staff and secretarial support for all functions of the judicial council”; and rewrote (g) which read: “The administrative director of the courts shall continuously survey and study the operation of the state court system, the volume and condition of business in the courts of the state, whether of record or not, the procedures employed by those courts, and the quality and responsiveness of all of the courts with regard to the needs of civil litigants and the needs of the criminal justice system throughout the state. The administrative director of the courts shall also provide liaison and staff support to the judicial council with regard to the responsibilities of the judicial council in the areas described in this subsection (g).”

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 236, § 94. April 19, 2013.

Acts 2016, ch. 619, § 6. March 22, 2016.

Acts 2019, ch. 345, § 148. May 10, 2019.

Acts 2019, ch. 420, § 27. May 21, 2019.

Cross-References. Administration of annual educational seminar of Tennessee state court clerks' conference, § 18-1-506.

Orientation and continuing training and education of trial and appellate judges, § 16-3-502.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 11, § II.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Supreme Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 191.

Attorney General Opinions. The Tennessee supreme court has the authority to require general sessions courts to collect and report statistical and other data to the administrative office of the courts concerning filing and disposition of driving while intoxicated cases and to make such information available to the department of safety or to any other department or agency of state government, OAG 01-054 (4/9/01).

Cited: Cornelius v. McWilliams, 641 S.W.2d 508, 1982 Tenn. App. LEXIS 494 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1982); Blackard v. Memphis Area Med. Ctr. for Women, Inc., 262 F.3d 568, 2001 FED App. 286P, 2001 U.S. App. LEXIS 19024 (6th Cir. Tenn. 2001).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Contract of Employment.

Inclusion of funds in the Tennessee Judicial Department's budget for the purpose of compensating trial judge secretarial assistants does not give rise to an implied annual contract of employment for any particular trial judge secretarial assistant; moreover, the role of the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) in performing human resources functions for the Judicial Department does not give rise to implied contracts between the AOC and Judicial Department employees. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

2. Court Personnel.

Despite the many critically important functions it provides the Judicial Department, the Administrative Office of the Courts is not authorized to hire, supervise, or remove a trial judge's secretarial assistant; this authority resides in the trial judge. Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 184 (Tenn. Mar. 28, 2017).

16-3-804. Personnel — Law practice barred.

  1. The administrative director of the courts shall, subject to the approval of the supreme court, appoint and fix the compensation of assistants, clerical staff, or other employees that are necessary to enable the administrative director to perform the duties of the administrative office of the courts.
  2. Neither the administrative director of the courts nor any employee of the state court system shall, during the term of office or employment, directly or indirectly engage in the practice of law in any of the courts of this state. Nothing in this subsection (b) or any other law shall be construed to prohibit personnel described in this section from providing pro bono legal services through an organized program of pro bono legal services that receives funding pursuant to § 16-3-808 and that provides professional liability insurance for losses sustained by clients of lawyers participating in the program.
    1. Prior to a person's employment with the administrative office of the courts, the administrative director of the courts is authorized to obtain a criminal history background check to be conducted by the Tennessee bureau of investigation and the federal bureau of investigation. Background checks must include fingerprint checks against state and federal criminal records maintained by the Tennessee bureau of investigation and the federal bureau of investigation.
    2. The administrative director of the courts may establish the job titles or classifications to which the requirements of this subsection (c) apply. Nothing in this subsection (c) supersedes any mandatory fingerprint-based criminal history background requirements that may be applicable for any person who is seeking employment in a position subject to licensure, approval, or certification by any state program or agency.
    3. The administrative office of the courts shall pay the Tennessee bureau of investigation or the federal bureau of investigation, as appropriate, for any costs the bureaus incur when conducting the investigations of applicants.

Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2; 2009, ch. 7, § 3; 2017, ch. 104, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 8, §§ 16-3-80116-3-805 (Acts 1963, ch. 86, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 214, § 1; T.C.A. §§ 16-325 — 16-329; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 24; 1992, ch. 651, § 1; 1992, ch. 896, § 1) concerning the executive secretary to the supreme court, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Amendments. The 2009 amendment added the last sentence of (b).

The 2017 amendment added (c).

Effective Dates. Acts 2009, ch. 7, § 4. July 1, 2009.

Acts 2017, ch. 104, § 2. April 7, 2017.

16-3-805. Office, equipment, and supplies.

The administrative director of the courts shall be provided with suitable office space and with all office equipment and supplies necessary to perform the duties and functions of the office.

Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Former part 8, §§ 16-3-80116-3-805 (Acts 1963, ch. 86, §§ 1-5; 1965, ch. 214, § 1; T.C.A. §§ 16-325 — 16-329; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 24; 1992, ch. 651, § 1; 1992, ch. 896, § 1) concerning the executive secretary to the supreme court, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 65, § 2.

16-3-806. Appropriation of funds for special personnel assigned to capital sentence costs.

All funds appropriated solely to employ, contract with or reassign personnel for the purpose of providing prompt and fair adjudication of post-conviction proceedings in capital sentence cases shall be appropriated to the administrative director of the courts to be allocated to, and pursuant to standards established by agreement of, the chief justice, the attorney general and reporter, the executive director of the conference of district attorneys general and the executive director of the conference of district public defenders. In addition, funds may be allocated and grants given to the offices of public defenders in Shelby and Davidson counties. Notice of intended allocations shall be given to the commissioner of finance and administration.

Acts 1993, ch. 472, § 5; 1996, ch. 610, § 4; 1996, ch. 996, § 2.

Cross-References. Attorney general and reporter, hiring of special personnel, § 8-6-111.

District attorney general, hiring of special personnel, § 8-7-111.

District public defender, hiring of special personnel, § 8-14-111.

Supreme court, hiring of special personnel, § 16-3-212.

16-3-807. Tennessee judicial information system fund.

  1. The state treasurer is authorized and directed to establish within the general fund the Tennessee judicial information system fund, as a restricted revolving account in the state treasury.
  2. The source of funding for this account shall be judicial branch appropriations made in the general appropriations act and unexpended funds carried forward in accordance with subsection (d).
  3. The funds for the Tennessee judicial information system established by this section may be invested by the state treasurer pursuant to policy guidelines, established by resolution of the funding board, created by § 9-9-101. The funding board shall establish the policy guidelines for the investment of the Tennessee judicial information system fund in a manner that is lawful for investment of state funds. All interest or other earnings shall be added to the corpus of the fund and shall remain a part of the fund.
  4. Any unencumbered or unexpended balance of this account at the end of the fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund but shall be carried forward until expended in accordance with this section.
  5. The balance of the fund shall be used for the acquisition of equipment, software, supplies, personnel, services and other costs incidental to the acquisition, development, operation and administration of information services, telecommunications, systems, software, supplies and equipment, including the payment of principal and interest on items paid in installments.

Acts 1994, ch. 1005, § 5.

16-3-808. Funds for civil legal representation of indigents.

  1. The state treasurer is authorized and directed to establish within the general fund a fund known as the civil legal representation of indigents fund.
  2. The source of funding for this fund shall be the revenue derived from the litigation tax levied pursuant to § 67-4-602(g). The revenue shall be collected in accordance with § 67-4-603, deposited to the civil legal representation of indigents fund as provided by law, and invested for the benefit of the fund pursuant to § 9-4-603. Moneys in the fund shall not revert to the general fund of the state, but shall remain available and are appropriated exclusively for providing legal representation of poor persons in civil matters.
  3. Moneys in the civil legal representation of indigents fund shall be annually allocated and expended to provide legal representation to poor persons in the state in civil matters in the manner determined by the supreme court, including in accordance with any rules and policies adopted by the supreme court for such purpose; provided, that no moneys allocated from this fund shall be expended for class-action lawsuits. The supreme court may designate not-for-profit organizations that ordinarily render or finance legal services to poor persons in civil matters to receive or administer the distribution of allocated funds. The supreme court shall make a conscious effort in the allocation of funds and in the adoption of any implementing rules and policies to cause the moneys in the civil legal representation of indigents fund to be expended for the benefit of indigent clients in all ninety-five (95) counties of the state on a poverty population basis.
  4. The administrative office of the courts shall appoint a five-member advisory panel to facilitate communication and joint activities among grantees of the civil legal representation of indigents fund. The administrative office of the courts shall appoint panel members as follows:
    1. One (1) member shall be appointed from lists of nominees submitted by bar associations whose membership primarily consists of minority attorneys;
    2. One (1) member shall be appointed from a list of nominees submitted by the Tennessee Bar Association;
    3. One (1) member shall be appointed from a list of nominees submitted by the Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association;
    4. One (1) member shall be appointed from a list of nominees submitted by the Tennessee conference on social welfare; and
    5. One (1) member shall be appointed from a list of nominees submitted by the state court clerks conference.

Acts 1995, ch. 550, § 2; 1999, ch. 502, § 3.

Cross-References. Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation, § 16-3-821.

16-3-809. State law libraries — Control and supervision — Powers — Expenditures.

  1. The administrative office of the courts shall have control and supervision of the existing state law libraries at Nashville, Knoxville, and Jackson. The office's powers include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1. The power to employ necessary personnel, either full or part time, and to fix their compensation;
    2. The power to purchase or otherwise acquire books, furniture, supplies, and all other necessary equipment, including the power to dispose of by sale, exchange, gift or otherwise, books and equipment, whenever in the judgment of the office it is deemed advisable;
    3. The power to make and enforce all necessary rules for the management and operation of the libraries; and
    4. The power to exchange the Tennessee Reports, the Tennessee Appeals Reports, Acts, and codes for the reports, acts, and codes of other jurisdictions, and the Tennessee Reports, the Tennessee Appeals Reports, Acts, and codes available for exchange under present and future laws shall be at the disposal of the office for such purpose.
  2. All expenditures made by the office pursuant to this section shall be within the limits of the amounts appropriated by the general assembly; provided, that the office has the authority to allocate amounts necessary for the operation and maintenance of each library among the libraries as it deems to be in the best interest of each library, but within the limits of the entire appropriation.

Acts 2016, ch. 619, § 3.

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-3-809 (Acts 1998, ch. 686, § 1; 2012, ch. 578, § 2; terminated by Acts 2014, ch. 499, § 2, effective February 28, 2014) concerned the judicial information system advisory committee.

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 619, § 6. March 22, 2016.

16-3-810. Dismissal of defendant upon completion of diversion program—Creation of form.

The administrative office of the courts, in consultation with the Tennessee bureau of investigation and the Tennessee court clerks association, shall devise a standard form, or revise the existing uniform judgment document promulgated pursuant to Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 17, for use by judges when ordering the dismissal of charges against a defendant following the successful completion of a diversion program under title 40, chapter 15 or § 40-35-313, or the expunction of a defendant's public records following the dismissal of charges against the defendant. The suggested order shall include a place for all information the courts are required to send to the Tennessee bureau of investigation pursuant to §§ 40-15-105(e), 40-32-101(d) and 40-35-313(c) for entry into the bureau's expunged criminal offender and pretrial diversion database. Upon completion of the design of the form or revised uniform judgment document, the administrative office of the courts shall recommend to the supreme court that it promulgate a rule requiring the use of the form or revised uniform judgment document for the purposes provided in this section.

Acts 1998, ch. 1099, § 12.

16-3-811. [Repealed.]

Acts 1999, ch. 486, § 2; 2013, ch. 236, § 32; repealed by Acts 2014, ch. 501, § 2, effective February 28, 2014.

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-3-811 concerned the Tennessee court information system steering committee.

Acts 2014, ch. 501, § 3 provided that notwithstanding § 4-29-112 or any other law to the contrary, the Tennessee court information system steering committee, created by § 16-3-811, shall terminate and shall cease to exist upon February 28, 2014.

16-3-812. Providing information regarding case disposition, compliance with reporting information and reports made by AOC regarding auditing compliance and accuracy of required reports.

  1. The administrative office of the courts (AOC) shall be responsible for making available to the Tennessee bureau of investigation in a mutually agreeable form all information the AOC receives from the various courts regarding disposition of cases.
  2. The AOC shall be responsible for making available, upon request, to the Tennessee bureau of investigation in a mutually agreeable form all information the AOC receives from the various courts regarding compliance with the reporting requirements of §§ 16-10-213, 16-11-206, 16-15-303, 16-16-120 and reports made by the AOC pursuant to § 16-1-117(a)(6)(B) for purposes of auditing compliance and accuracy of the required reports.

Acts 1999, ch. 495, § 1; 2013, ch. 300, § 2.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment added (b).

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 300, § 11. July 1, 2013.

16-3-813. Credentialed court interpreter.

  1. Any person seeking to become a credentialed court interpreter for spoken foreign languages pursuant to any rules that may be promulgated by the supreme court shall be required to supply a fingerprint sample and submit to a criminal history records check conducted by the Tennessee bureau of investigation pursuant to § 38-6-109, the federal bureau of investigation, other law enforcement agency or any other legally authorized entity. In addition to the fee required by § 38-6-109, the sheriff or any other law enforcement agency may assess a fee of up to ten dollars ($10.00) for costs incurred in complying with this section. Any fees assessed in the criminal background records check process are the responsibility of the person seeking to be credentialed as a court interpreter of spoken foreign languages.
  2. The administrative office of the courts (AOC) shall create and maintain a registry of those persons credentialed as court interpreters of spoken foreign languages and shall post the registry on the web site maintained by the AOC.

Acts 2002, ch. 494, § 1; 2004, ch. 755, § 1.

16-3-814. Integrated Criminal Justice Act of 2006.

Sections 16-3-814 — 16-3-820 shall be known and may be cited as the “Integrated Criminal Justice Act of 2006.”

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-815. Creation of the integrated criminal justice steering committee — Purpose.

There is created an integrated criminal justice steering committee, which shall be administratively attached to the administrative office of the courts. The purpose of the integrated criminal justice steering committee is to provide the governmental and technical information systems infrastructure necessary for accomplishing state and local government public safety and justice functions in the most effective manner, by appropriately and efficiently sharing criminal justice and juvenile justice information among law enforcement agencies, judicial agencies, corrections agencies, executive agencies and political subdivisions.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1; 2013, ch. 97, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. The integrated criminal justice steering committee, created by this section, terminates June 30, 2026. See §§ 4-29-112, 4-29-247.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment deleted “of the state” from the end of the last sentence.

Effective Dates. Acts 2013, ch. 97, § 2. April 8, 2013.

16-3-816. Duties of the committee.

It is the duty of the integrated criminal justice steering committee to facilitate the development of cost-effective, integrated justice information systems that maximize standardization of information and communications technology across the state's justice and justice-affiliated agencies. It is further the duty of the committee to provide the leadership, strategy, mission, vision, goals, decision-making structure and accountability processes for the integrated criminal justice system.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-817. Goals of the integrated criminal justice system.

Any integrated criminal justice system developed through the facilitation of the committee shall:

  1. Increase public safety and improve national security;
  2. Minimize the threat and risk of injury to specific individuals;
  3. Minimize the threat and risk of injury to law enforcement and other first responder personnel;
  4. Minimize the threat and risk of damage to real or personal property;
  5. Protect individual civil rights, civil liberties, privacy rights and other protected interests;
  6. Protect the integrity of the criminal investigatory, criminal intelligence and justice system processes and information;
  7. Minimize reluctance of individuals or groups to use or cooperate with the justice system;
  8. Support the role of the justice system in society;
  9. Promote governmental legitimacy and accountability;
  10. Not unduly burden the ongoing business of the justice system; and
  11. Make the most effective use of public resources allocated to justice agencies.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-818. Membership of steering committee — Advisory committee appointments — Policies and procedures.

  1. The membership of the steering committee shall consist of:
    1. Director of the office of criminal justice programs or a designee;
    2. President of the Tennessee sheriffs association or a designee;
    3. President of the Tennessee association of chiefs of police or a designee;
    4. Executive director of the Tennessee district attorneys general conference or a designee;
    5. Executive director of the Tennessee district public defenders conference or a designee;
    6. Commissioner of correction or a designee;
    7. Chair of the board of parole or a designee;
    8. President of the Tennessee court clerks association or a designee;
    9. One (1) member of each body of the general assembly to be appointed by the respective speakers of the house of representatives and the senate;
    10. Attorney general and reporter or a designee;
    11. Tennessee chief information officer or a designee;
    12. Director of the Tennessee bureau of investigation or a designee;
    13. Commissioner of safety or a designee;
    14. Director of the Tennessee office of homeland security or a designee;
    15. Director of the administrative office of the courts or a designee;
    16. Chief justice of the Tennessee supreme court or a designee;
    17. Deputy commissioner of the juvenile justice division of the department of children’s services or a designee;
    18. Director of the Tennessee emergency management agency or a designee; and
    19. Director of the governor’s highway safety office or a designee.
  2. The steering committee may appoint advisory council members from time to time. Advisory members may represent entities, including, but not limited to:
    1. Municipal judges conference;
    2. Tennessee bar association;
    3. Tennessee county services association;
    4. Governor’s office and lay members appointed by the governor;
    5. Commission on children and youth;
    6. Council of juvenile and family court judges;
    7. Tennessee emergency communications division;
    8. Department of revenue;
    9. Department of commerce and insurance;
    10. Tennessee fireman’s association; and
    11. Alcoholic beverage commission.
  3. The steering committee may establish policies and procedures relative to membership and operations of the steering committee on issues, including, but not limited to, election and terms of officers, voting privileges, establishment of subcommittees, cessation of membership on the steering committee and other operational issues as may be necessary to the efficient and effective operation of the steering committee.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-819. Compensation.

The members of the steering committee, advisory council and subcommittees shall serve without compensation, but shall be eligible for  reimbursement for travel expenses in accordance with the provisions of the comprehensive travel regulations as promulgated by the department of finance and administration and approved by the attorney general and reporter.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-820. Hiring of personnel to manage integrated criminal justice projects.

The administrative office of the courts (AOC) shall be empowered to hire personnel to manage integrated criminal justice projects and to be responsible for day-to-day operations. In making the personnel decisions, the director of the AOC shall consult with the steering committee.

Acts 2006, ch. 917, § 1.

16-3-821. Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation.

  1. This section shall be known and may be cited as the “Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation.”
    1. There is established in the state treasury a separate account known as the Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation. It is the intent of the general assembly that this fund be used to provide supplemental funding for the provision of civil legal representation for indigents. Distribution of the fund as provided in this section shall be administered by the administrative office of the courts (AOC).
    2. Contributions to the Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation are voluntary and this section shall not be construed to require an appropriation from the general fund to establish, maintain, operate, or disburse money from the fund, if done in accordance with this section.
  2. The Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation is authorized to receive contributions from the following sources:
    1. The unpaid residuals from settlements or awards in class action litigation in both state and federal courts; provided, that the litigation has been certified as a class action under Tenn. R. Civ. P. 23 or Rule 23 of the federal rules of civil procedure;
    2. Awards from other actions in a state or federal court, when specifically designated by the judges in those actions;
    3. Monetary settlements, whether through mediation, arbitration or otherwise, when so designated by a party authorized to do so;
    4. Gifts, contributions, bequests, donations, devises and grants from any legal and appropriate source to effectuate the purpose of the fund. If these contributions to the fund are not in the form of money or other negotiable instrument, any income, rents or proceeds generated from the items contributed shall be deposited into the fund; and
    5. Any other legitimate funding source that is now available or may in the future become available.
  3. Amounts remaining in the fund at the end of the fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund, but shall remain available for use as provided in this section. Moneys in the fund shall be invested by the state treasurer pursuant to title 9, chapter 4, part 6, for the sole benefit of the fund.
  4. Any cost associated with the Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation shall be paid for by the proceeds of this fund.
  5. When the corpus of the Tennessee voluntary fund for indigent civil representation reaches or exceeds one million dollars ($1,000,000), the interest on the corpus shall be distributed in accordance with § 67-4-806(2).
    1. The AOC and the Tennessee Alliance for Legal Services may make the judiciary and legal profession aware of and promote the existence and purpose of this fund.
    2. The Tennessee Alliance for Legal Services may also make any materials explaining and promoting the fund available to charitable or philanthropic foundations and other groups or persons who might be interested in contributing to the fund.
  6. Nothing in this section shall be construed to repeal or affect the operation of the civil legal representation of indigents fund created in § 16-3-808. It is the intent of the general assembly that the two (2) funds remain distinct and separate methods to achieve the same goal of providing quality legal representation to indigents in civil actions.

Acts 2006, ch. 589, § 1.

Part 9
Private Probation Services Council

16-3-901. Creation.

There is created the private probation services council.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. The private probation services council, created by this section, terminates June 30, 2021. See §§ 4-29-112, 4-29-242.

16-3-902. Purpose.

The purpose of the council is to ensure that uniform professional and contract standards are practiced and maintained by private corporations, enterprises and entities engaged in rendering general misdemeanor probation supervision, counseling and collection services to the courts.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 3.

16-3-903. Part definitions.

As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:

  1. “Council” means the private probation services council;
  2. “Governing authority” means the elected body of any county, municipality or metropolitan government with statutory power to enter into written contracts with corporations, enterprises or entities to provide public services; and
  3. “Private entity” means a privately owned and operated corporation, enterprise or entity that contracts to provide general probation supervision, counseling or collection services for persons convicted of a misdemeanor and placed on probation.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 4.

16-3-904. Attachment to appropriate state entity.

The commissioner of finance and administration shall attach the council to the appropriate state entity for administrative purposes.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 5.

16-3-905. Membership.

  1. The council shall consist of the following seven (7) voting members:
    1. Four (4) members who shall be appointed to serve for four-year terms as follows:
      1. One (1) criminal court judge who shall be appointed by the president of the Tennessee judicial conference, representing a judicial district within which one (1) or more private entities provide probation services; and
      2. Three (3) general sessions court judges who shall be appointed by the president of the Tennessee general sessions judges conference, representing counties within which one (1) or more private entities provide probation services; and
    2. Three (3) members who shall be appointed by the governor to serve four-year terms as follows:
      1. One (1) publicly employed probation officer;
      2. One (1) private probation officer or individual with expertise in private probation service by virtue of training or employment; and
      3. One (1) county commissioner.
  2. Subsequent vacancies on the council shall be filled in the same manner as initially filled.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 6; 2007, ch. 149, § 1.

16-3-906. Officers.

The council shall annually elect from its membership a chair, vice chair and other officers as deemed expedient.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 7.

16-3-907. Staff.

The state entity to which the council is attached for administrative purposes shall provide staff services for the council.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 8.

16-3-908. Meetings.

The council shall meet at such times and places as necessary and convenient.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 9; 2012, ch. 986, § 11.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2012, ch. 986, § 48 provided that all rules, regulations, orders, and decisions heretofore issued or promulgated by any of the boards or commissions, which the act terminates or merges into another board or commission, shall remain in full force and effect. In the case of the boards or commissions that are merged with another board or commission by the act, all final rules, regulations, orders, and decisions together with any matters that are pending on October 1, 2012, shall hereafter be administered, enforced, modified, or rescinded in accordance with the law applicable to the continuing board or commission.

Amendments. The 2012 amendment deleted “at least once each quarter and” following “shall meet”.

Effective Dates. Acts 2012, ch. 986, § 49. October 1, 2012.

16-3-909. Duties of council — Fingerprint sample and criminal history records check — Reinstatement of license — Promulgation of rules and regulations.

  1. The purpose of the council is to ensure that uniform professional and contract standards are practiced and maintained by private corporations, enterprises and entities rendering general misdemeanor probation supervision, counseling and collection services to the courts. To such end, the council shall:
    1. Provide oversight of private entities;
    2. Promulgate uniform professional standards and uniform contract standards for private entities;
    3. Establish forty (40) hours of orientation for new private probation officers and eight (8) hours of annual continuing education;
    4. Promulgate rules and regulations regarding noncompliance with the uniform professional standards and uniform contract standards;
    5. Promulgate rules and regulations requiring periodic registration of all private entities; and
    6. Publish an annual summary report.
    7. [Deleted by 2019 amendment.]
  2. The council:
    1. May reinstate a license upon the payment of a renewal fee, as set by the council; and
    2. Shall establish a late renewal fee, to be equal to twenty-five percent (25%) of the registration fee.
  3. All rules and regulations promulgated pursuant to subsection (a) shall be promulgated in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5.
    1. All private probation officers to be employed by entities providing private probation services pursuant to this part shall:
      1. Be required to supply a fingerprint sample and submit to a criminal history records check to be conducted by the Tennessee bureau of investigation (TBI) and the federal bureau of investigation (FBI) or other vendor contracted for the same purposes prior to being employed with such entities; and
      2. Agree that the TBI may send to the council information indicating the results of the criminal history records check. The results will indicate whether the applicant has a criminal conviction that would result in a private probation officer being denied employment by such entities.
    2. The applicant shall pay any reasonable costs incurred by the TBI or FBI, or both, in conducting an investigation of an applicant for employment as a private probation officer. In lieu of additional criminal history records checks for subsequent applications for employment, the applicant may submit copies of the applicant's initial criminal history records check documentation and shall not be required to pay any additional costs.

Acts 1998, ch. 1067, § 10; 2019, ch. 369, §§ 3-5.

Amendments. The 2019 amendment substituted “eight (8) hours” for “twenty (20) hours” in (a)(3); deleted former (a)(7), which read: “Promulgate rules and regulations requiring criminal records checks of all private probation officers.”; and added (b) and (d).

Effective Dates. Acts 2019, ch. 369, § 6. May 10, 2019.

16-3-910. Powers of the council.

The council has the power:

  1. To establish fees sufficient to pay the annual expenses of the council; and
  2. In a lawful proceeding under the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, assess civil penalties, in accordance with rules adopted pursuant to the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, for violations of statutes, rules or orders enforceable by the council.

Acts 2004, ch. 665, § 1.

16-3-911. Probation contracts with private entities.

No public officer or employee of a governing authority who is involved in making or administering a contract with a private entity that is governed by the council and that provides probation services may derive any direct benefit from the contract.

Acts 2014, ch. 827, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2014, ch. 827, § 2 provided that the act, which enacted this section, shall apply to all contracts entered into or renewed on or after April 28, 2014.

Pursuant to Article III, Section 18 of the Constitution of Tennessee, Acts 2014, ch. 827 took effect on April 28, 2014.

Effective Dates. Acts 2014, ch. 827, § 2. April 28, 2014. [See the Compiler’s Notes.]

Part 10
Automated Court System Hardware Replacement Loan Fund

16-3-1001. Establishment of special revolving loan fund — Purpose — Rules and regulations — Funding.

    1. There is established within the general fund a special revolving loan fund to be known as the automated court system hardware replacement loan fund, referred to in this part as the “fund”. The fund is established for the purpose of providing interest-free funding for the replacement of computer hardware associated with automated court systems that have been implemented by courts of the state.
    2. The department of finance and administration shall administer the fund and shall adopt rules and regulations for the administration.
    3. All interest and earnings of the fund shall remain a part of the fund.
    4. No part of the fund shall revert to the general fund at the end of any fiscal year, but shall remain a part of the fund available for expenditure in accordance with this part.
    5. The department shall deposit into the fund all receipts from the repayment of loans made pursuant to this part.
    6. Nothing in this part shall be construed to exclude or prevent future appropriations to the fund.
  1. All counties in which any court has implemented the Tennessee court information system (TnCIS), or a court automation system determined by the administrative office of the courts (AOC) to be functionally equivalent, are eligible to receive loans from the fund to purchase necessary computer hardware components in accordance with a hardware replacement schedule approved and monitored by the administrative office of the courts. No interest expense shall be passed on to the county unless the state issues bonds to capitalize all or a portion of the fund. In such case, a reasonable cost of issuance may be passed on to the loan recipients.
  2. When a county requests the department to have the state finance the acquisition of replacement hardware for an automated court system, the affected clerk, the governing body of the county, and the department shall enter into an agreement to be known as the automated court system hardware replacement loan agreement, referred to in this part as the “agreement.” The comptroller of the treasury must approve any deviations from the requirements outlined in the agreement. The agreement is subject to the following requirements:
    1. The original term of the loan shall be for a period of four (4) years. Annual installment payments to the fund shall begin the same year as funds are borrowed. The department shall establish an annual payment due date of June 1. Notice of the loan agreement, including the annual payment schedule, shall be sent to the comptroller of the treasury;
    2. All computer hardware purchased by a county under the agreement shall be acquired from current state contracts;
    3. The agreement may contain any other reasonable provisions deemed necessary and desirable by the department, the AOC, the comptroller of the treasury, the clerk for whom the replacement hardware is being purchased or the governing body of the county;
    4. If a county fails or neglects to pay any of the annual payments prescribed, the commissioner of finance and administration shall retain the sum necessary for the payment out of any state funds distributable to the county in which the state court resides. No statutory requirement that any distributable, state collected, locally shared funds shall be used exclusively for a designated purpose shall be construed as preventing the commissioner from withholding the funds; and
    5. The state will maintain a lien on any computer hardware purchased with moneys borrowed from the fund until the terms and conditions of the agreement have been satisfied.

Acts 2001, ch. 451, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2001, ch. 451, § 3 provided that, notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, all of the first year's funding of the act shall be from non-state sources and may be from non-state sources, in whole or in part, in subsequent years.

Chapter 4
Court of Appeals

16-4-101. Establishment.

There shall be an appellate court composed of twelve (12) judges, styled the court of appeals.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 1; Shan. Supp., § 6325a1; mod. Code 1932, § 10606; Acts 1978, ch. 836, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-401.

Cross-References. Power of general assembly to create courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1.

Law Reviews.

A Simplified System of Appellate Procedure, 17 Tenn. L. Rev. 651.

Appellate Court Voting Rights, 49 Vand. L. Rev. 997 (1996).

Justiciability in Tennessee, Part Three: Timing (Barbara Kritchevsky), 16 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 177 (1986).

The Tennessee Court of Appeals: How Often It Corrects the Trial Courts — and Why, 68 Tenn. L. Rev. 557 (2001).

Attorney General Opinions. Court of appeals precedent, OAG 07-098 (7/3/07).

Comparative Legislation. Appeals courts:

Ala.  Code § 12-3-1 et seq.

Ark.  Code § 16-12-101 et seq.

Ga. O.C.G.A. § 15-3-1 et seq.

Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 22A.010 et seq.

Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 477.040, 477.160 et seq.

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 7A-16 et seq.; § 7A-26 et seq.

Va. Code § 17-116.01 et seq.

Cited: In re Scalf's Adoption, 176 Tenn. 581, 144 S.W.2d 772, 1940 Tenn. LEXIS 104 (1940); In re T.B.H., — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 239 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 20, 2007).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Purpose of Creation of Court.

The purpose of the creation of an intermediate appellate court was to lighten the labors of the supreme court by giving to the latter the benefit of a finding of facts, in a proper case, by the court of appeals on all material issues in equity cases. This purpose is demonstrated by the legislative history throughout 30 years. Hibbett v. Pruitt, 162 Tenn. 285, 36 S.W.2d 897, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 89 (1931).

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts § 458.

Courts 42.

16-4-102. Election and qualifications of judges — Oaths.

  1. The court of appeals shall be composed of twelve (12) judges, of whom no more than four (4) shall be residents of the same grand division of the state. Immediately preceding appointment, each judge shall be at least thirty (30) years of age, shall have been a resident of the state for at least five (5) consecutive years, shall have been a resident of the grand division from which the judge is appointed for at least one (1) year, and shall be licensed to practice law in this state. For purposes of this subsection (a), “resident” has the same meaning as defined in § 2-1-104.
  2. The oaths of office of the judges of the court of appeals shall be filed and entered on the minutes of the court in the particular grand division from which the judge has been appointed and confirmed or subsequently elected. The oath shall likewise be filed and entered on the records in the office of the secretary of state at Nashville.
  3. The judges of the court of appeals shall be elected by the qualified voters of the state in a statewide retention election conducted in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 1. Vacancies on the court of appeals shall be filled by the governor in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 1.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 3; Shan. Supp., § 6325a3; mod. Code 1932, § 10607; Acts 1978, ch. 836, § 2; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-402; Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 4.

Compiler's Notes. For the Preamble to the act concerning an orderly procedure for the appointment, confirmation, and retention of appellate court judges as required by Tennessee Constitution, Article VI, Section 3, please refer to Acts 2016, ch. 528.

Amendments. The 2016 amendment rewrote the section which read: “At the regular judicial election held every eight (8) years, there shall be elected twelve (12) judges of the court of appeals, of whom not more than four (4) shall reside in one (1) grand division of the state, and each of whom shall be not less than thirty (30) years of age, and shall have been a resident of the state five (5) years before qualification; and be learned in the law.”

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 23. January 28, 2016.

Cross-References. Filling of vacancy in office, § 8-48-109.

Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Impeachment of judges or chancellors, title 8, ch. 46.

Vacancies in office, § 17-1-301.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

Attorney General Opinions. Factors used to determine residency status, OAG 95-019 (3/27/95).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Residency Requirements.

Statutes creating the intermediate courts of appeal distinguish between a residency requirement for a candidate for office and residence of voters for purposes of voting in exactly the same way as does the Constitution in establishing the Supreme Court; in both instances, a judicial candidate can be required to live in a certain geographic area as a qualification for office, but still be elected statewide without regard to geographic area in which the qualified voters reside. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

Since judges of intermediate appellate courts are not assigned to any district or circuit, voting by district or circuit is not required, and this is in no way changed by the requirement that no more than four of the 12 judges on each intermediate appellate court may reside in any one of three grand divisions of Tennessee; a district is a political subdivision, and while a district usually connotes a subunit of a county and may be subject to reconfiguration, a grand division refers to one of three permanently defined, large umbrella units, each composed of many counties and districts, and a grand division is not a district within the meaning of the Constitution. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

Even if a grand division were deemed to be a district, the statutory limitation on residence by grand division would still be irrelevant, since the judges of the intermediate appellate courts are not assigned to any grand division; the statutory residence requirement by grand division is merely a limiting qualification for the office of intermediate appellate judge, and it is not a limitation on voting. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

Collateral References. Judges 3, 4.

16-4-103. Tenure and compensation of judges.

The tenure of office is eight (8) years, and the judges shall receive compensation as fixed in § 8-23-103.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 3; Shan. Supp., § 6325a3; mod. Code 1932, § 10608; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-403.

16-4-104. Organizational meetings — Rules.

At the first meeting of the court after the regular judicial election, the members of the court shall choose the presiding judge of the court of appeals and adopt rules of practice; and the presiding judge shall, on the request of a majority of the members, call meetings thereafter for the purpose of reconsidering or revising the rules.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 7; Shan. Supp., § 6325a7; Code 1932, § 10615; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-404.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in the Internal Operating Procedures of the Tennessee Court of Appeals.

16-4-105. Presiding judges.

The entire court shall have one (1) presiding judge, chosen by the members of the court, and, when sitting in sections, each section shall at all times have a presiding judge to be chosen by its members.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 6; Shan. Supp., § 6325a6; Code 1932, § 10614; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-405.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Retention.

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

16-4-106. Clerks and marshals.

The clerks and marshals of the supreme court shall also be the clerks and marshals of the court of appeals, and shall perform the same duties and be subject to the same liabilities and receive the same compensation as are prescribed by law.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 15; Shan. Supp., § 6325a15; Code 1932, § 10628; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-406.

Cross-References. Law clerks, § 8-23-109.

Supreme court clerks, title 18, ch. 3.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 6 Tenn. Juris., Clerks of Court, § 12.

16-4-107. Expenses.

The expenses of the court of appeals shall be paid out of the state treasury, upon the warrant of the commissioner of finance and administration.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 15; Shan. Supp., § 6325a15; mod. Code 1932, §§ 153, 10628; mod. C. Supp. 1950, § 153; modified; impl. am. Acts 1959, ch. 9, § 3; impl. am. Acts 1961, ch. 97, § 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-407.

16-4-108. Jurisdiction — Venue.

    1. The jurisdiction of the court of appeals is appellate only, and extends to all civil cases except workers' compensation cases and appeals pursuant to § 37-10-304(g).
    2. All cases within the jurisdiction conferred on the court of appeals shall, for purposes of review, be taken directly to the court of appeals in the division within which the case arose, the eastern division to include Hamilton County and the western division to include Shelby County. As to all other cases, the exclusive right of removal and review is in the supreme court. Any case removed by mistake to the wrong court shall by that court be transferred to the court having jurisdiction of the case, direct.
  1. The court of appeals also has appellate jurisdiction over civil or criminal contempt arising out of a civil matter.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 10; Shan. Supp., § 6325a10; Code 1932, § 10618; Acts 1951, ch. 9, § 1; 1951, ch. 66, § 1; 1977, ch. 390, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-408; Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 3; 1989, ch. 147, § 2; 1992, ch. 952, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 4 provided that any action pending on July 1, 1989, shall be maintained under law prior to the 1989 amendment by that act until its final disposition.

Acts 1989, ch. 147, § 12 provided that any and all matters filed or pending as of July 1, 1989, shall be disposed of under prior law.

Acts 1992, ch. 952, § 15 provided that the amendments by that act apply to all matters as to which a notice of appeal is filed from and after May 1, 1992.

Cross-References. Appeals from Marion County courts, § 16-2-101.

Attorney disciplinary proceedings, appeal from circuit or chancery court direct to Supreme Court, Tenn. R. Sup. Ct. 9, § 1.3.

Rule Reference. This section is referred to in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 9, § 1.3.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 664, 699.

Pritchard on Wills and Administration of Estates (4th ed., Phillips and Robinson), §§ 778, 845.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 15-17, 28, 30, 82, 116; 3 Tenn. Juris., Attorney and Client, § 25; 10 Tenn. Juris., Ejectment, § 30; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, §§ 19, 20; 18 Tenn. Juris., Mandamus, § 21.

Law Reviews.

A Survey of Civil Procedure in Tennessee— 1977, VII. Appellate Review of the Disposition (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 366.

Attorney General Opinions. Appeals from grant or denial of order of protection, OAG 98-043 (2/17/98).

Cited: Ford Motor Co. v. Pace, 206 Tenn. 559, 335 S.W.2d 360, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 394, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 395 (1960); Paris v. Paris-Henry County Public Utility Dist., 207 Tenn. 388, 340 S.W.2d 885, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 469 (1960); In re Estate of Deskins, 214 Tenn. 608, 381 S.W.2d 921, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 512 (1964); Dickson v. Houston, 221 Tenn. 138, 425 S.W.2d 586, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 453 (1968); Greer v. American Sec. Ins. Co., 223 Tenn. 390, 445 S.W.2d 904, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (1969); State ex rel. Pemberton v. Wilson, 481 S.W.2d 760, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 348 (Tenn. 1972); Ohio Casualty Ins. Co. v. Travelers Indem. Co., 493 S.W.2d 465, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 504 (Tenn. 1973); Pidgeon-Thomas Iron Co. v. Garner, 495 S.W.2d 826, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 496 (Tenn. 1973); Rhodes v. Pioneer Parking Lot, Inc., 501 S.W.2d 569, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 535 (Tenn. 1973); State v. Jackson, 503 S.W.2d 185, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 440 (Tenn. 1973); Jackson v. Chambers, 510 S.W.2d 74, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 501 (Tenn. 1974); State ex rel. Wood v. Memphis, 510 S.W.2d 889, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 510 (Tenn. 1974); State Farm Mut. Ins. Co. v. Taylor, 511 S.W.2d 464, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 495 (Tenn. 1974); Gentry v. Davis, 512 S.W.2d 4, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 475 (Tenn. 1974); Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County v. Reynolds, 512 S.W.2d 6, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 476 (Tenn. 1974); Moore v. Old Republic Ins. Co., 512 S.W.2d 564, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 489 (Tenn. 1974); Great American Ins. Co. v. Hartford Acci. & Indem. Co., 519 S.W.2d 579, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 706 (Tenn. 1975); Davis v. Hinton, 519 S.W.2d 776, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 711 (Tenn. 1975); Martin v. State, 519 S.W.2d 793, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 715 (Tenn. 1975); Norman v. Tennessee State Board of Claims, 533 S.W.2d 719, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 547 (Tenn. 1975); White v. Roden Electrical Supply Co., 536 S.W.2d 346, 1976 Tenn. LEXIS 630 (Tenn. 1976); Ezell v. Buhler, 557 S.W.2d 62, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 668 (Tenn. 1977); Frye v. Crowell, 563 S.W.2d 788, 1978 Tenn. LEXIS 534 (Tenn. 1978); Metropolitan Development & Housing Agency v. Leech, 591 S.W.2d 427, 1979 Tenn. LEXIS 524 (Tenn. 1979); Union Planters Nat'l Bank v. Inman, 588 S.W.2d 757, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 351 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979); Mitchell v. Mitchell, 594 S.W.2d 699, 1980 Tenn. LEXIS 421 (Tenn. 1980); Doochin v. Rackley, 610 S.W.2d 715, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 397 (Tenn. 1981); State v. Lawyer, 619 S.W.2d 153, 1981 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 357 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1981); State ex rel. Lockert v. Crowell, 631 S.W.2d 702, 1982 Tenn. LEXIS 398 (Tenn. 1982); Pickett v. Brown, 638 S.W.2d 369, 1982 Tenn. LEXIS 430 (Tenn. 1982); Ashe v. Leech, 653 S.W.2d 398, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 676 (Tenn. 1983); Carter v. Olsen, 660 S.W.2d 483, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 732 (Tenn. 1983); Farmer v. Board of Professional Responsibility of Supreme Court, 660 S.W.2d 490, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 795 (Tenn. 1983); State ex rel. Shelby County Election Com. v. Shelby County Bd. of Comm'rs, 656 S.W.2d 9, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 596 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983); Super Flea Market, Inc. v. Olsen, 677 S.W.2d 449, 1984 Tenn. LEXIS 941 (Tenn. 1984); State ex rel. Baugh v. Williamson County Hospital Trustees, 679 S.W.2d 934, 1984 Tenn. LEXIS 875 (Tenn. 1984); Cleveland Bank & Trust Co. v. Olsen, 682 S.W.2d 200, 1984 Tenn. LEXIS 904 (Tenn. 1984); State ex rel. SCA Chemical Services, Inc. v. Sanidas, 681 S.W.2d 557, 1984 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3429 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1984); Gibson County Special School Dist. v. Palmer, 691 S.W.2d 544, 1985 Tenn. LEXIS 523 (Tenn. 1985); State v. Orr, 694 S.W.2d 297, 1985 Tenn. LEXIS 535 (Tenn. 1985); Foley v. Dayton Bank & Trust, 696 S.W.2d 356, 1985 Tenn. App. LEXIS 2778 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1985); State, Dep't of Revenue v. Moore, 722 S.W.2d 367, 1986 Tenn. LEXIS 846 (Tenn. 1986); Tennessee Farmers' Cooperative v. State, 736 S.W.2d 87, 1987 Tenn. LEXIS 960 (Tenn. 1987); Sweeney v. State Dep't of Transp., 744 S.W.2d 905, 1987 Tenn. App. LEXIS 2853 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1987); WRG Enterprises, Inc. v. Crowell, 758 S.W.2d 214, 1988 Tenn. LEXIS 176 (Tenn. 1988); Aluminum Co. of America v. Celauro, 762 S.W.2d 107, 1988 Tenn. LEXIS 198 (Tenn. 1988); Summers v. Thompson, 764 S.W.2d 182, 1988 Tenn. LEXIS 108 (Tenn. 1988); In re Estate of Powers, 767 S.W.2d 659, 1988 Tenn. App. LEXIS 756 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988); Richards Mfg. Co. v. Great American Ins. Co., 773 S.W.2d 916, 1986 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3433 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1986); Freeman v. Burson, 802 S.W.2d 210, 1990 Tenn. LEXIS 337 (Tenn. 1990); Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County v. Tennessee State Bd. of Equalization, 817 S.W.2d 953, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 342 (Tenn. 1991); Potts v. State, 833 S.W.2d 60, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 424 (Tenn. 1992); Williams v. Williamson County Bd. of Educ., 890 S.W.2d 788, 1994 Tenn. App. LEXIS 461 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1994); Stewart Title Guar. Co. v. FDIC, 936 S.W.2d 266, 1996 Tenn. App. LEXIS 532 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1996); Williamson County Broad. Co. v. Intermedia Partners, 987 S.W.2d 550, 1998 Tenn. App. LEXIS 559 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1998); Storey v. Nichols, 27 S.W.3d 886, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 218 (Tenn. 2000); Smith v. Harriman Util. Bd., 26 S.W.3d 879, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 78 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000); Green v. Innovative Recovery Servs., Inc., 42 S.W.3d 917, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 514 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000); Hodges v. Tennessee AG, 43 S.W.3d 918, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 785 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000); State v. Gray, 46 S.W.3d 749, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 677 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000); Tip's Package Store, Inc. v. Commercial Ins. Managers, Inc., 86 S.W.3d 543, 2001 Tenn. App. LEXIS 893 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2001); Freeman v. Freeman, 147 S.W.3d 234, 2003 Tenn. App. LEXIS 660 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2003); Moody v. Hutchison, 159 S.W.3d 15, 2004 Tenn. App. LEXIS 331 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2004); Bell v. Todd, 206 S.W.3d 86, 2005 Tenn. App. LEXIS 583 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2005); McCall v. Nat'l Health Corp., — S.W.3d —, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 989 (Tenn. Nov. 3, 2006); Linn v. Howard, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 52 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 26, 2007); In re T.B.H., — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 239 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 20, 2007); Konvalinka v. Chattanooga-Hamilton County Hosp. Auth., 249 S.W.3d 346, 2008 Tenn. LEXIS 103 (Tenn. Feb. 13, 2008); Nix v. Cantrell (In re J.M.N.), — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 346 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 13, 2008); State v. Ream, — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 539 (Tenn. Ct. App. Sept. 18, 2008); Byars v. Young, 327 S.W.3d 42, 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 20, 2010).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Nature of Jurisdiction.

The court of appeals is one of review and of final determination, except on petition for certiorari presenting: (1) Errors of law; (2) Errors of fact where there is a nonconcurrence between the trial court and the court of appeals; or (3) Concurrence without any evidence to support the conclusion. Bray v. Blue Ridge Lumber Co., 154 Tenn. 342, 289 S.W. 504, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 131 (1926).

Jurisdiction of court of appeals is not limited to questions of fact only. Gormany v. Ryan, 154 Tenn. 432, 289 S.W. 497, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 139 (1926); Garrett v. Garrett, 156 Tenn. 253, 300 S.W. 9, 1927 Tenn. LEXIS 109 (1927).

The powers of the supreme court, under the constitution and statutes, are broader than the powers conferred on the court of appeals by the statutes of its creation. Growers Warehousing Corp. v. W. E. Sawyer Tobacco Co., 5 Tenn. App. 619, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 101 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

Where appeal of will contest was granted to all contestants but only one of them perfected an appeal, the court of appeals had jurisdiction to review the case as fully as if all the contestants had perfected the appeal granted. Druen v. Hudson, 17 Tenn. App. 428, 68 S.W.2d 146, 1933 Tenn. App. LEXIS 77 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1933).

The court of appeals has appellate jurisdiction only and cannot exercise original jurisdiction to determine the validity of a client's agreement, giving his attorney a lien on a fund for services in protecting the fund from claim of client's adversary where the question was not presented below. John Weis, Inc. v. Reed, 22 Tenn. App. 90, 118 S.W.2d 677, 1938 Tenn. App. LEXIS 9 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1938).

The jurisdiction of the court of appeals being appellate only, such court only reviews the judgment of trial court in disposing of a motion for a new trial and not the grounds themselves, originally, before they were passed upon by the trial judge. Standard Oil Co. v. Naramore, 30 Tenn. App. 430, 207 S.W.2d 7, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 100 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

The jurisdiction of the court of appeals is appellate only, and the court of appeals can only consider such matters as were brought to the attention of the chancellor, and acted upon or pretermitted by him. Clement v. Nichols, 186 Tenn. 235, 209 S.W.2d 23, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 542 (1948); Loftis v. Stuyvesant Ins. Co., 54 Tenn. App. 371, 390 S.W.2d 722, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 158 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

Court of appeals can only consider such matters as were brought to the attention of the trial court and acted upon or permitted by the trial court. Irvin v. Binkley, 577 S.W.2d 677, 1978 Tenn. App. LEXIS 276 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1978).

The court of appeals has intermediate appellate jurisdiction of appeals from orders relating to suits for negligence even though the existence or nonexistence of worker's compensation coverage may affect the right to recover for negligence. Hill v. King, 663 S.W.2d 435, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 650 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

Judgment awarding a landlord possession of the property and for unpaid rent against a tenant was affirmed because neither a transcript of the proceedings nor a statement of the evidence was filed and the pleadings filed contained minimal information; without a complete record or sufficient statement of the evidence, the appellate court assumed the sufficiency of the evidence to support the judgment pursuant to T.R.A.P. 13(d). The Court of Appeals of Tennessee had appellate jurisdiction only, and its power to review was limited to those factual and legal issues for which an adequate legal record had been preserved. Reid v. Reid, 388 S.W.3d 292, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 554 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 9, 2012), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 846 (Tenn. Nov. 20, 2012).

2. —“All Civil Cases” — Meaning and Construction.

The term “all civil cases” does not include matters submitted to the juvenile and domestic relations courts of Knox County and were not intended to give the court of appeals jurisdiction of appeals coming up from such additional tribunals. In re Scalf's Adoption, 176 Tenn. 581, 144 S.W.2d 772, 1940 Tenn. LEXIS 104 (1940).

A prosecution for an act violating a city ordinance is a civil, not a criminal proceeding, even though such act be denounced by ordinance as a “misdemeanor” and be also an offense against state law so that appeal is to the court of appeals unless the case falls within one of the exceptions enumerated in this section. O'Dell v. Knoxville, 214 Tenn. 237, 379 S.W.2d 756, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 469 (1964), overruled, City of Chattanooga v. Davis, 54 S.W.3d 248, 2001 Tenn. LEXIS 635 (Tenn. 2001).

3. Method of Trial in Lower Court — Effect.

The jurisdiction on appeal as between the appellate courts turns on the method of procedure in the trial court, whether or not the issues have been there presented and considered by such method as do not call for a consideration, review or determination of questions of fact. Gormany v. Ryan, 154 Tenn. 432, 289 S.W. 497, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 139 (1926).

The respective jurisdictions depend upon the method of trial in the lower court, and not upon the circumstance that, after appeal, no disputed fact remains open. Gormany v. Ryan, 154 Tenn. 432, 289 S.W. 497, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 139 (1926); Cumberland Trust Co. v. Bart, 163 Tenn. 272, 43 S.W.2d 379, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1931); State v. Retail Credit Men's Ass'n, 163 Tenn. 450, 43 S.W.2d 918, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1931); King v. King, 164 Tenn. 666, 51 S.W.2d 488, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1932); Lincoln County Bank v. Maddox, 21 Tenn. App. 648, 114 S.W.2d 821, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 66 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937); Poston v. Aetna Ins. Co., 183 Tenn. 137, 191 S.W.2d 180, 1945 Tenn. LEXIS 283 (1945).

The jurisdiction of the supreme court is not saved by the circumstance that no question of fact is involved on the appeal. Jurisdiction on appeal depends on the method adopted in the trial court, and unless that method precludes a determination of the facts in that court, the appeal is properly to the court of appeals. Garrett v. Garrett, 156 Tenn. 253, 300 S.W. 9, 1927 Tenn. LEXIS 109 (1927).

The jurisdiction of the supreme court depends upon the method adopted in the trial court and unless that method precludes a determination in that court of the facts an appeal is properly taken to the court of appeals. Goins v. Yowell, 199 Tenn. 167, 285 S.W.2d 135, 1955 Tenn. LEXIS 441 (1955); Long v. National Bureau of Casualty Underwriters, 209 Tenn. 435, 354 S.W.2d 255, 1962 Tenn. LEXIS 374 (1962); Bales v. McPhetridge, 209 Tenn. 334, 354 S.W.2d 60, 1962 Tenn. LEXIS 363 (1962).

Appellate jurisdiction of civil case in chancery court in which pleadings presented issues of fact to be determined upon proof to be heard by the court was in the court of appeals and not in the supreme court. State-Wide Sales Finance Corp. v. Long, 206 Tenn. 680, 337 S.W.2d 239, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 418 (1960).

Jurisdiction of supreme court extends to all cases determined in the trial court on demurrer or other method not involving a review of determination of facts. Long v. National Bureau of Casualty Underwriters, 209 Tenn. 435, 354 S.W.2d 255, 1962 Tenn. LEXIS 374 (1962).

Where decree of lower court was determined by a method not involving a review or determination of the facts, appeal was to supreme court. Pulaski Lumber Co. v. Harpeth South, Inc., 501 S.W.2d 275, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 533 (Tenn. 1973).

4. Matters Not Raised in Lower Court.

The question of whether an attorney should have a lien on funds of the defendant held by the court is one of original jurisdiction and is therefore not within the jurisdiction of the court of appeals which is appellate only. John Weis, Inc. v. Reed, 22 Tenn. App. 90, 118 S.W.2d 677, 1938 Tenn. App. LEXIS 9 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1938).

Motion to dismiss appeal involving probate of will on ground that some of the proponents who were legatees and devisees had failed to give bond was denied where matter had not been brought to attention of trial court. Gregory v. Susong, 185 Tenn. 232, 205 S.W.2d 6, 1947 Tenn. LEXIS 325 (1947).

Court of appeals did not commit error in refusing to allow complainant to amend original bill after argument by adding party complainant, since court of appeals can only consider matters brought to the attention of the trial court. Clement v. Nichols, 186 Tenn. 235, 209 S.W.2d 23, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 542 (1948).

Although the trial judge in a divorce action agreed to allow a post-trial deposition which became part of the appellate record, the appellate court would not consider the deposition on appeal since it was neither presented to nor considered by the trial judge. Kinard v. Kinard, 986 S.W.2d 220, 1998 Tenn. App. LEXIS 543 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1998), modified, 986 S.W.2d 220, 1998 Tenn. App. LEXIS 598 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1998).

Tennessee court of appeals erred in remanding case for discovery concerning allegations of misconduct by chancellor and in ordering that discovery materials be transmitted to it as a supplemental record, where the clear effect of the order was that the court of appeals, not the trial court, would determine the merits of allegations, requiring the court of appeals to make factual findings based upon the “supplemental record,” which determination was an unauthorized exercise of original jurisdiction; proper remedy was for plaintiff to file motion asking court of appeals to remand the case to the trial court for the filing and adjudication of a motion pursuant to Tenn. R. Civ. P. 60. Peck v. Tanner, 181 S.W.3d 262, 2005 Tenn. LEXIS 579 (Tenn. 2005).

5. Finality of Proceedings in Lower Court.

Supreme court under this section did not have jurisdiction to review alleged error of trial court in refusing to permit filing of intervening petition in controversy over property rights, since refusal to allow intervening petition was not a final determination of case in trial court. Bernard v. Walker, 183 Tenn. 523, 193 S.W.2d 770, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 232 (1946).

6. Contempt Proceedings — Nature.

Where an appeal in a contempt case does not involve a question of guilt, but only the legal question of whether the chancery court or the court of appeals could exercise the power to punish, the appeal lies to the supreme court. Collier v. Memphis, 160 Tenn. 500, 26 S.W.2d 152, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 125 (1930), superseded by statute as stated in, Overnite Transp. Co. v. Teamsters Local Union No. 480, — S.W.3d —, 2005 Tenn. LEXIS 402 (Tenn. May 16, 2005), superseded by statute as stated in, Overnite Transp. Co. v. Teamsters Local Union No. 480, 172 S.W.3d 507, 2005 Tenn. LEXIS 550 (Tenn. 2005), superseded by statute as stated in, Linn v. Howard, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 52 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 26, 2007).

Proceedings for punishment for contempt are in their nature criminal and, while an appeal to the supreme court lies on conviction, no appeal lies from an acquittal on the facts. Collier v. Memphis, 160 Tenn. 500, 26 S.W.2d 152, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 125 (1930), superseded by statute as stated in, Overnite Transp. Co. v. Teamsters Local Union No. 480, — S.W.3d —, 2005 Tenn. LEXIS 402 (Tenn. May 16, 2005), superseded by statute as stated in, Overnite Transp. Co. v. Teamsters Local Union No. 480, 172 S.W.3d 507, 2005 Tenn. LEXIS 550 (Tenn. 2005), superseded by statute as stated in, Linn v. Howard, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 52 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 26, 2007).

On review under T.C.A. § 16-4-108(b), although civil contempt was properly found where a city council took new evidence in a zoning case contrary to a trial court's order, the use of a coercive fine was improper because it was awarded retroactively prior to the finding of contempt; even if the trial court's decision was violative of T.C.A. § 13-7-203, the proper avenue was not to disregard it. Flautt & Mann v. Council of Memphis, 285 S.W.3d 856, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 20, 2008).

7. Disbarment Proceedings.

An appeal from a judgment disbarring a lawyer lies to the court of appeals. Thompson v. Denman, 164 Tenn. 428, 50 S.W.2d 222, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1932); Memphis & Shelby County Bar Ass'n v. Himmelstein, 165 Tenn. 102, 53 S.W.2d 378, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 176 (1932).

Prior decisions of Tennessee supreme court holding that appeal of attorney disciplinary proceedings must be taken to court of appeals overruled by Tenn. R. Sup. Ct. 9, § 1.3.

8. Constitutional Questions.

Whenever good faith constitutional questions are involved which may be determinative, although nonconstitutional questions are also presented, the jurisdiction is exclusively in the supreme court. Nashville v. Dad's Auto Accessories, Inc., 154 Tenn. 194, 285 S.W. 52, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 116 (1926), dismissed, Dad's Auto Accessories v. Nashville, 47 S. Ct. 20, 273 U.S. 770, 71 L. Ed. 883, 1926 U.S. LEXIS 333 (1926); Kemp v. Caruthers, 11 Tenn. App. 201, 1930 Tenn. App. LEXIS 8 (1930).

Constitutionality of statute relied upon was properly questioned for first time on appeal in error to court of appeals, and, question being debatable, and not frivolous, cause was transferred to supreme court. Mattel v. Clark Hardware Co., 3 Tenn. App. 379, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 111 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926).

All cases involving constitutional questions are appealable to the supreme court only. Howard & Herrin v. Nashville, C. & S. L. R. Co., 3 Tenn. App. 174, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926); State v. Monday, 7 Tenn. App. 257, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 37 (1928).

Where the constitutional question is theoretical and wholly insufficient to determine the cause on appeal, the court of appeals will have jurisdiction. Williams v. Realty Dev. Co., 161 Tenn. 451, 33 S.W.2d 64, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1930).

If an act whose constitutionality is questioned may be construed as not applicable to the particular case, the constitutional question becomes immaterial and the court of appeals may exercise jurisdiction. Western Auto. Casualty Co. v. Burnell, 17 Tenn. App. 687, 71 S.W.2d 474, 1933 Tenn. App. LEXIS 101 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1933).

The exception as to constitutional questions refers to rights dependent upon the constitutionality of statutes and ordinances, or the denial of privileges expressly guaranteed by the Constitution and, the constitutional questions must be substantial and not incidental to the cause of action. Tennessee C. R. Co. v. Pharr, 183 Tenn. 658, 194 S.W.2d 486, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 249 (1946).

Mere insistence that there is no evidence upon which the public utilities commission could base a legal and just conclusion is not sufficient to raise a constitutional question as to the taking of property without due process, and thus bring the case under the exception of this section. Tennessee C. R. Co. v. Pharr, 183 Tenn. 658, 194 S.W.2d 486, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 249 (1946).

Under the statute jurisdiction of constitutional questions lies exclusively in the supreme court, but in order to deprive the court of appeals of jurisdiction on that account the constitutional question must be substantial and not incidental. Memphis & Shelby County Bar Ass'n v. Aspero, 35 Tenn. App. 9, 242 S.W.2d 319, 1950 Tenn. App. LEXIS 164 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1950), cert. denied, Aspero v. Memphis & S. County Bar Asso., 342 U.S. 836, 72 S. Ct. 61, 96 L. Ed. 632, 1951 U.S. LEXIS 1668 (1951), rehearing denied, Aspero v. Memphis & S. County Bar Asso., 343 U.S. 989, 72 S. Ct. 1078, 96 L. Ed. 1375, 1952 U.S. LEXIS 2016 (1952).

Findings of circuit court on certiorari from conservation department that defendant was not “hunting” deer with a shotgun under § 51-425 (now § 70-4-116) and that §§ 51-707 — 51-715 (now §§ 70-6-20270-6-206 (former)) were unconstitutional under state and federal Constitutions, should be appealed to court of appeals since fact question is involved. Findlay v. Davis, 198 Tenn. 107, 278 S.W.2d 87, 1955 Tenn. LEXIS 352 (1955).

If constitutionality of statute is sole determinative question in litigation jurisdiction of appeal is in supreme court, but where appellee questions appellant's right to attack the act, this adds another question to determine and court of appeals will resolve the doubt in favor of their jurisdiction. Davis v. Allen, 43 Tenn. App. 278, 307 S.W.2d 800, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 115 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957).

Where a number of constitutional questions were received concerning a private act divesting a county judge of juvenile jurisdiction, but the case turned on the issue of fact of whether or not the quarterly county court had ratified the act by the proper 2/3 majority, the court of appeals had jurisdiction. Kesterson v. McKee, 527 S.W.2d 144, 1975 Tenn. App. LEXIS 202 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1975).

Jurisdiction of an appeal as of right was properly perfected directly to supreme court of Tennessee under this section when the sole determinative question is one of constitutional interpretation and construction. McPherson v. Everett, 594 S.W.2d 677, 1980 Tenn. LEXIS 408 (Tenn. 1980).

9. Right to Hold Office.

Where a proceeding is not one between two individuals claiming the right to hold a public office but is a proceeding wherein the holder of an office seeks an injunction against the election of his successor, the right to hold public office is only incidentally involved in the determination of the question of the right to the injunction, and the court of appeals will assume jurisdiction. White v. Knight, 34 Tenn. App. 426, 238 S.W.2d 745, 1950 Tenn. App. LEXIS 157 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1950).

A suit to dismiss a public officer for violation of § 12-4-101, while it seeks a dismissal from public office, does not involve the right to hold such office, hence the supreme court does not have jurisdiction under this section. Crass v. Walls, 194 Tenn. 573, 253 S.W.2d 755, 1952 Tenn. LEXIS 422 (1952).

10. State Revenue.

Question of exemption from taxation, on grounds that defendant was an educational institution, involved state revenue and the supreme court had appellate jurisdiction of the same. State v. Rowan, 171 Tenn. 612, 106 S.W.2d 861, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 144 (1937).

In consolidated tax suits by city, county and state where the state revenue was the principal matter involved the appellate jurisdiction was in the supreme court. State v. Rowan, 171 Tenn. 612, 106 S.W.2d 861, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 144 (1937).

11. Mandamus.

While the court of appeals has no appellate jurisdiction of cases of mandamus brought up from a lower court, it has inherent power to grant a writ of mandamus in aid of its own jurisdiction, as to compel a trial judge to sign a bill of exceptions in a case appealable to that court. Hyde v. Dunlap, 3 Tenn. App. 368, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 109 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926); Blanton v. Tennessee Cent. Ry., 4 Tenn. App. 335, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 189 (1926); Stargel v. Stargel, 21 Tenn. App. 193, 107 S.W.2d 520, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 20 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937).

Where a case is transferred to the supreme court because a constitutional question is involved, it will consider all questions properly raised. Chattanooga Dayton Bus Line v. Burney, 160 Tenn. 294, 23 S.W.2d 669, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 105 (1929); Fonville v. Gregory, 162 Tenn. 294, 36 S.W.2d 900, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 90 (1931).

Supreme court does not have jurisdiction of appeal from decree dismissing a bill for mandamus to compel county judge to issue to county superintendent of education his warrant for salary alleged to be due, mandamus not being proper remedy. State ex rel. Groce v. Martin, 155 Tenn. 322, 292 S.W. 451, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 51 (1927).

12. Quo Warranto.

A suit in the name of the state on relation to enjoin a corporation from illegal activities and to have the corporation dissolved and its charter forfeited is in the nature of a quo warranto proceeding, the jurisdiction of which on appeal is with the supreme court. State v. Retail Credit Men's Ass'n, 163 Tenn. 450, 43 S.W.2d 918, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1931).

Jurisdiction of an appeal in a case in the nature of quo warranto, which has been determined by the court of appeals, will be taken by the supreme court by certiorari, and the case will be disposed of as though directly appealed to the supreme court. State v. Retail Credit Men's Ass'n, 163 Tenn. 450, 43 S.W.2d 918, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1931).

13. Review or Determination of Facts as Affecting Jurisdiction.

The supreme court has jurisdiction of all cases which have been finally determined in the lower courts on demurrer or other method not involving a review or determination of the facts, or in which all the facts have been stipulated, and it may award writs of certiorari and supersedeas, where there is no material controversy over the facts as presented by the pleadings or bill and answer. Cockrill v. Peoples Sav. Bank, 155 Tenn. 342, 293 S.W. 996, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1927).

Where the pleadings in a cause show that it must be finally determined upon issues of fact, appellate jurisdiction, in the first instance, is with the court of appeals. First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929).

Suit testing validity of city ordinance which did not involve a review or determination of facts was properly appealed directly to supreme court. Rutherford v. Nashville, 168 Tenn. 499, 79 S.W.2d 581, 1934 Tenn. LEXIS 82 (1935).

Court of appeals is not without jurisdiction to review decree of chancery court based upon undisputed facts merely because such a review would involve only questions of law. Lincoln County Bank v. Maddox, 21 Tenn. App. 648, 114 S.W.2d 821, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 66 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937).

In view of the language of the act by which the court of appeals was created, the supreme court does not secure jurisdiction of a direct appeal from the lower court by reason of the fact that nothing but a question of law is presented on the appeal, and its jurisdiction in such cases depends upon the method of trial in the lower court. Poston v. Aetna Ins. Co., 183 Tenn. 137, 191 S.W.2d 180, 1945 Tenn. LEXIS 283 (1945).

Where probate judge in determining validity of claims against estate, decided their merits on the facts without stipulation, court of appeals was proper forum for appeal from such decision. Sizemore v. Rinehart, 193 Tenn. 475, 246 S.W.2d 91, 1952 Tenn. LEXIS 313 (1952).

Where the statute does not expressly cover a situation the respective jurisdictions of the supreme court and the court of appeals depend upon the method of trial in the lower court and unless that method precludes a determination of the facts in that court the appeal is properly to the court of appeals. Mayor of Jackson v. Thomas, 202 Tenn. 26, 302 S.W.2d 56, 1957 Tenn. LEXIS 358 (1957).

The jurisdiction on appeal as between the supreme court and the court of appeals depends on whether or not issues have been presented and considered in the lower court by such method as calls for a consideration and determination of questions of fact and when disputed questions of fact are involved jurisdiction of the appeal is in the court of appeals and not the supreme court. Davenport v. Blankenship, 203 Tenn. 679, 315 S.W.2d 257, 1958 Tenn. LEXIS 234 (1958).

Where question of whether or not statute of limitations applied in ejectment suit was determined on oral testimony as well as exhibits filed with the pleadings, case was determined by method calling for determination of disputed questions of fact and jurisdiction of appeal was in court of appeals and not supreme court. Davenport v. Blankenship, 203 Tenn. 679, 315 S.W.2d 257, 1958 Tenn. LEXIS 234 (1958).

Case tried before chancellor on pleadings and written stipulation of facts came directly to supreme court for review. Marler v. Claunch, 221 Tenn. 693, 430 S.W.2d 452, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 496 (1968).

Supreme court has jurisdiction to review circuit court's judgment in common law certiorari proceeding setting aside denial by commissioner of insurance and banking (now commissioner of commerce and insurance) of request of insurance companies for rate increase since issue does not involve a review or determination of the facts. Pack v. Royal-Globe Ins. Cos., 224 Tenn. 452, 457 S.W.2d 19, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 343 (1970).

Where no testimony is involved in case contesting validity of zoning ordinance but a large part of the evidence in the record consists of exhibits which the trial judge is required to consider, the case is not decided in the lower court “on demurrer or other method not requiring a review or determination of the facts,” and jurisdiction of the appeal is in the court of appeals and not the supreme court. Blankenship v. Johnson City, 224 Tenn. 593, 459 S.W.2d 428, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 360 (1970).

Jurisdiction on appeal from review by chancellor of refusal of civil service commission of metropolitan government of Nashville and Davidson Counties to review dismissal of employee by metropolitan employee benefit board was in supreme court since consideration of questions of fact by chancellor on common law writ of certiorari was precluded. Culbertson v. Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County, 483 S.W.2d 716, 1971 Tenn. LEXIS 335 (Tenn. 1971).

On motion for summary judgment trial Judge's determination of whether there is a genuine issue as to any material fact when done so upon the record as a whole which contained evidentiary matters such as depositions, affidavits or exhibits was a review or determination of facts and an appeal from a judgment so entered was proper in the court of appeals. Allstate Ins. Co. v. Hartford Acci. & Indem. Co., 483 S.W.2d 719, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 370 (Tenn. 1972).

14. —Effect of Recitation in Decree of Lower Court.

When chancellor recites in his final decree that he is determining the case on pro confesso and depositions, it conclusively appears that he was determining the case otherwise than on demurrer, and by a method involving a determination of the facts, and jurisdiction of appeal is in the court of appeals and not the supreme court. Poston v. Aetna Ins. Co., 183 Tenn. 137, 191 S.W.2d 180, 1945 Tenn. LEXIS 283 (1945).

15. —Stipulation of Facts.

Where cause was heard in chancery court upon agreed stipulations of fact, appeal is direct to supreme court. Manhattan Sav. Bank & Trust Co. v. Bedford, 161 Tenn. 187, 30 S.W.2d 227, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 49 (1930).

An agreement of counsel that certain depositions and exhibits should be looked to as showing or establishing what the facts are does not constitute a stipulation of what the facts are, as that term is used in this section. Cumberland Trust Co. v. Bart, 163 Tenn. 272, 43 S.W.2d 379, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1931).

Exhibits brought into the record as part of the agreed facts or as part of the pleadings were not deemed disputed facts. King v. King, 164 Tenn. 666, 51 S.W.2d 488, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1932).

The supreme court has jurisdiction of a case of stipulated facts, notwithstanding the right reserved to counsel, never exercised, to introduce evidence and the fact that counsel may disagree as to the application of undisputed facts or inferences therefrom. King v. King, 164 Tenn. 666, 51 S.W.2d 488, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1932).

Where facts were stipulated in action in chancery court to recover on builder's risk policy so that appeal should have been to supreme court, supreme court would upon granting certiorari dispose of case as though it had been appealed directly to that court. Shamrock Homebuilders, Inc. v. Cherokee Ins. Co., 225 Tenn. 236, 466 S.W.2d 204, 1971 Tenn. LEXIS 298 (1971).

Although the jurisdiction of the court of appeals was questionable because all of the facts were stipulated, the court ruled on the merits of the appeal for expediency with confidence that any jurisdictional error would be corrected by the supreme court on certiorari. Adams v. Swift, 500 S.W.2d 437, 1973 Tenn. App. LEXIS 281 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1973).

16. — —Stipulation after Trial.

Jurisdiction on appeal cannot be deflected or conferred by a stipulation or agreement as to facts entered into after trial before the chancellor. Cumberland Trust Co. v. Bart, 163 Tenn. 272, 43 S.W.2d 379, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1931).

17. — —Stipulation Supplemented by Proof.

Where a stipulation does not contain all the facts, and shows that it does not do so, but that additional proof was taken and relied on, the appeal lies to the court of appeals. Creasey v. Comargo Coal Co., 154 Tenn. 372, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 135 (1926).

Where the stipulation provides for the consideration of depositions, and the record also contains exhibits introduced and agreed to be considered by the chancellor, the appeal lies to the court of appeals, though in that court only a question of law may stand for determination. Cumberland Trust Co. v. Bart, 163 Tenn. 272, 43 S.W.2d 379, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1931).

The court of appeals has appellate jurisdiction if the trial court considered evidence not stipulated, although questions of law only are involved on appeal. Lincoln County Bank v. Maddox, 21 Tenn. App. 648, 114 S.W.2d 821, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 66 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937).

18. —Mixed Question of Law and Fact.

Where the chancellor has to fix the amount of a debt, that incidental or collateral questions are presented for his determination, the ruling of the chancellor on which may be contended to be determinative, such as rulings on exceptions to testimony, does not deprive the court of appeals of appellate jurisdiction. Gormany v. Ryan, 154 Tenn. 432, 289 S.W. 497, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 139 (1926).

In action on account where setoff is the defense and questions of law and fact are involved, but facts are not stipulated in court below, appeal lies to court of appeals. Johnson v. Stuart, 155 Tenn. 618, 299 S.W. 779, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 89 (1927).

There being no stipulation as to facts, the question whether an alleged will was subject to probate in this state as one having been probated in a foreign country was, in the lower court, a mixed question of law and fact, so that on appeal jurisdiction was with the court of appeals. In re De Franceschi's Estate, 17 Tenn. App. 673, 70 S.W.2d 513, 1933 Tenn. App. LEXIS 100 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1933).

19. —Demurrer.

Court of appeals does not have jurisdiction of appeal from ruling on demurrer. Swing v. Harnaday, 1 Tenn. App. 568, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 75 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925).

Court of appeals had jurisdiction of proceeding in chancery court even though demurrer based on question of law submitted by one of the defendants was sustained where chancery court decided case as against other defendant on pro confesso and depositions. Poston v. Aetna Ins. Co., 183 Tenn. 137, 191 S.W.2d 180, 1945 Tenn. LEXIS 283 (1945).

Where pleading filed as an answer had the legal effect of a demurrer and final determination of trial court was made thereon, appeal was to the supreme court. Smith v. Landsden, 212 Tenn. 543, 370 S.W.2d 557, 1963 Tenn. LEXIS 447 (1963).

Where petition to set aside county court's order approving administratrix' settlement of estate was dismissed on answer treated as demurrer going to legal sufficiency of petition and parties consented to appeal direct to supreme court, supreme court had jurisdiction of the appeal. In re Estate of Williams, 213 Tenn. 707, 378 S.W.2d 775, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 439 (1964).

Jurisdiction to act on petition for certiorari seeking review of chancellor's decision denying appeal from order sustaining demurrer to cross bill and sustaining motion to dismiss cross bill lay with supreme court. Foster v. First Nat'l Bank, 221 Tenn. 688, 430 S.W.2d 450, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 495 (1968).

20. —Construction of Instruments.

Appeal from decree of chancellor construing the provisions of a will, which involves no disputed facts, is within the sole jurisdiction of the supreme court. Summers v. Kollock, 1 Tenn. App. 142, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 21 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925); Leaver v. McBride, 506 S.W.2d 141, 1974 Tenn. LEXIS 519 (Tenn. 1974).

Where case involves only the construction of a deed as a question of law, court of appeals has no jurisdiction, and appeal to it will be transferred to supreme court. Northwestern Mut. Life Ins. Co. v. Newsom, 2 Tenn. App. 70, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 94 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925).

21. Effect of Other Statutes.

Statutory provision that an appeal from final judgment of probate court lay to court of appeals or supreme court, “as the case may be,” is equivalent to provision that the appeal shall lie to such courts in all civil cases except those determined in the lower court by methods not involving a review of the determination of facts. Sizemore v. Rinehart, 193 Tenn. 475, 246 S.W.2d 91, 1952 Tenn. LEXIS 313 (1952).

Notwithstanding § 36-235 (now § 36-2-114) appeals from juvenile court must be taken to supreme court when judgment is entered by consent of parties and without introduction of evidence. Smelcer v. Broyles, 225 Tenn. 187, 465 S.W.2d 355, 1971 Tenn. LEXIS 292 (1971).

Procedures for obtaining review of contested cases involving the public service commission are governed by §§ 4-5-117, 4-5-118 (now §§ 4-5-322, 4-5-323) of the administrative procedures law. United Inter-Mountain Tel. Co. v. Public Service Com., 555 S.W.2d 389, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 627 (Tenn. 1977); Public Service Com. v. General Tel. Co., 555 S.W.2d 395, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 629 (Tenn. 1977).

The provision in Tenn. Code Ann. § 9-8-403(a)(1), that appeals from the Tennessee claims commission in tax matters shall go directly to the supreme court, was repealed by implication by this section. Stewart Title Guar. Co. v. McReynolds, 886 S.W.2d 233, 1994 Tenn. App. LEXIS 296 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1994).

22. Review of Decrees of Court of Appeals.

Revisory jurisdiction of the supreme court of the judgments of the court of appeals does not permit the supreme court to try case anew, but it is the supreme court's duty to ascertain if there are any errors in the actions of the court of appeals and to correct such errors. Schrader v. Kentucky-Tennessee Light & Power Co., 157 Tenn. 391, 8 S.W.2d 495, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 204, 62 A.L.R. 495 (1928).

Interlocutory decrees of court of appeals are not subject to review by the supreme court. First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929); State-Wide Sales Finance Corp. v. Long, 206 Tenn. 680, 337 S.W.2d 239, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 418 (1960).

23. Transfer of Cases.

The statute vests the court of appeals with jurisdiction to determine whether a case appealed to it has been removed by mistake to the wrong court, and its order transferring a case to the supreme court is valid until reversed by that court. Sharpe v. Sharpe, 8 Tenn. App. 392, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 152 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928).

Where cause was decided by chancellor on proof taken on the merits, the supreme court had no jurisdiction to pass on questions raised in the assignment of errors and would transfer the cause to the court of appeals. Goins v. Yowell, 199 Tenn. 167, 285 S.W.2d 135, 1955 Tenn. LEXIS 441 (1955).

T.C.A. § 16-4-108 only provides statutory authority for the transfer of appeals by the Tennessee supreme court of appeals; as such, it does not provide any authority to allow a chancery court to transfer an improperly made appeal to a circuit court. Graves v. Kraft Gen. Foods, 45 S.W.3d 584, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 692 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000).

The chancery court erred when it dismissed spouse's appeal from probate because under T.C.A. § 16-4-108, it should have transferred the case to the court of appeals; the appellate court vacated the dismissal and remanded the case to the trial court for transfer back to the court of appeals. In re Estate of White, 77 S.W.3d 765, 2001 Tenn. App. LEXIS 803 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2001).

Defendant's appeal from a general sessions court finding defendant in criminal contempt arising out of a civil matter was improperly filed in the court of criminal appeals, but the appeal was kept alive upon transfer to the court of appeals where the content requirements for the notice of appeal were sufficient aside from the wrong court designation. State v. Wood, 91 S.W.3d 769, 2002 Tenn. App. LEXIS 330 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2002), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2002 Tenn. LEXIS 526 (Tenn. Nov. 12, 2002).

When a case has been appealed to the wrong appellate court it should be transferred to the court having jurisdiction thereof; in this case appeal had to be transferred to the circuit court for Davidson County. Chaffin v. Leathers (In re C.M.C.), — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 581 (Tenn. Ct. App. Sept. 30, 2008).

While the court of appeals correctly found that an estate appealed a probate court's decision to the wrong court, it should not have summarily dismissed the appeal. Instead, it should have vacated the circuit court's judgment and remanded the case to the circuit court with directions to transfer the case to the court of appeals in accordance with T.C.A. § 16-4-108(a)(2). Once the case was properly before it, the court of appeals could then have addressed the substantive issues raised by the parties. In re Estate of Trigg, 368 S.W.3d 483, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 379 (Tenn. May 30, 2012).

24. —Refusal to Transfer — Relief.

Where the court of appeals is without jurisdiction but refuses to transfer a quo warranto cause to the supreme court, on motion, the supreme court will entertain a petition for certiorari because of the error in thus refusing, and dispose of the case as though directly appealed to the supreme court. State v. Retail Credit Men's Ass'n, 163 Tenn. 450, 43 S.W.2d 918, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1931).

25. —Retransfers.

A case improperly transferred by the court of appeals to the supreme court will be retransferred to the former. Cox v. Smith, 154 Tenn. 369, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1926).

26. Summary Judgment Proceedings.

Although normally, where affidavits or other materials outside the pleadings are considered by the trial court and there is no formal, written stipulation of facts, appellate review of summary judgment proceedings is, under this section, properly in the court of appeals rather than the supreme court, but, under § 27-3-105 (repealed), both courts have discretion to accept for review questions certified for interlocutory appeal, and, under § 27-3-128, either court may remand a case to the trial court for further evidence where it appears from the record that more satisfactory or complete evidence is available for the development of the issues. Layhew v. Dixon, 527 S.W.2d 739, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 647 (Tenn. 1975).

27. Revivor of Judgment.

The court of appeals has jurisdiction to try any questions, whether of law or fact, in connection with the issuance of a writ of scire facias to revive its judgments or in connection with any subsequent pleadings with reference thereto. Craddock v. Calcutt, 39 Tenn. App. 481, 285 S.W.2d 528, 1955 Tenn. App. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1955).

28. Torts.

Jurisdiction of an appeal in a tort action lies in the court of appeals, not the supreme court. Van Cleave v. McKee Baking Co., 712 S.W.2d 94, 1986 Tenn. LEXIS 757 (Tenn. 1986); Smith v. Lincoln Brass Works, Inc., 712 S.W.2d 470, 1986 Tenn. LEXIS 759 (Tenn. 1986).

Collateral References. 5 Am. Jur. 2d Appeal and Error §§ 1, 4, 6-14, 20, 1007, 1008.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 456, 458, 459.

Courts 210-254.

16-4-109. Number of judges necessary to decision.

  1. When sitting in sections of three (3) judges each, the concurrence of two (2) of the judges shall be sufficient to determine all matters coming before the section; and such action, without more, shall have effect, in all respects, as if the entire court of appeals had participated in the action.
  2. When the court sits en banc, the concurrence of seven (7) of the judges, and, when two (2) sections sit together, the concurrence of five (5) of the judges, shall so suffice and be effective.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 5; Shan. Supp., § 6325a5; mod. Code 1932, §§ 10612, 10613; Acts 1978, ch. 836, § 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-409.

Law Reviews.

A Survey of Civil Procedure in Tennessee — 1977, IV. Pretrial Procedure (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 308.

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 183, 217, 458.

16-4-110. Process.

The court of appeals, and the individual members of the court, are given power to grant writs of error, certiorari and supersedeas in cases within the jurisdiction of the court, such writs to be returnable to the court of appeals in the division in which they arose, and the practice in those cases in the court of appeals shall be the same as is prescribed for the supreme court.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 11; Shan. Supp., § 6325a11; Code 1932, § 10619; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-410.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Effect of Statute.

Statute gives court of appeals and its individual members power to grant writs of error, certiorari, and supersedeas in cases within its jurisdiction. Sullivan v. Eason, 5 Tenn. App. 137, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 45 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

2. Jurisdiction to Grant Writs.

The power to grant writs of certiorari and supersedeas to review the actions of lower courts depends upon the same rules governing appeals to the one court or the other. Cox v. Smith, 154 Tenn. 369, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1926). See Cockrill v. Peoples Sav. Bank, 155 Tenn. 342, 293 S.W. 996, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1927); First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929).

3. Prerequisites to Granting Writs.

Court of appeals is without power to order a supersedeas to issue except upon a finding that there is error in the judgments of which the petitioner complains. Sullivan v. Eason, 5 Tenn. App. 137, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 45 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

The petitioner must demonstrate grounds for extraordinary relief. Myers v. State, 577 S.W.2d 679, 1978 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 279 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1978).

4. Court in Which Jurisdiction Lies.

Supreme court held without jurisdiction to grant writs of certiorari and supersedeas to supersede action of circuit court in discharging supersedeas previously granted. State v. Chattanooga, 153 Tenn. 349, 284 S.W. 359, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1926).

Where the pleadings disclose issue or issues of fact that are to be determined by proof in the lower court, such reviewing power is with the court of appeals. Cox v. Smith, 154 Tenn. 369, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1926).

Where a demurrer is overruled and answer is filed and excepted to, which exceptions are also overruled, application for a petition for certiorari and supersedeas is to be made to the court of appeals, since, whenever the collateral issues presented by such petition are disposed of, the cause will stand for trial in the lower court upon proof as to facts. Cox v. Smith, 154 Tenn. 369, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1926).

The supreme court is without jurisdiction to grant writs of certiorari and supersedeas in a case pending in the trial court, which has not been there finally determined, and in which the pleadings present issue of fact to be determined upon proof to be heard by that court. Cox v. Smith, 154 Tenn. 369, 289 S.W. 524, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1926).

In all cases wherein appeals or appeals in nature of writs of error would lie to court of appeals, that court has power to grant writs of error, certiorari and supersedeas. Hyde v. Dunlap, 3 Tenn. App. 368, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 109 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926).

Where none of the controlling facts alleged in a bill of complaint are definitely denied in the answer, no controversy over the facts exists, and the jurisdiction is with the supreme court to revise the decree of the lower court by writs of certiorari and supersedeas. Cockrill v. Peoples Sav. Bank, 155 Tenn. 342, 293 S.W. 996, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1927); First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929).

5. Erroneously Granting Writs.

Where a justice of the supreme court erroneously grants writs of certiorari and supersedeas that should have been presented to a judge of the court of appeals, the supreme court must discharge the writs, and cannot transfer the case to the court of appeals. State v. Chattanooga, 153 Tenn. 349, 284 S.W. 359, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1926).

Where the court of appeals is without jurisdiction, the denial by a member of that court of writs of certiorari and supersedeas to review the action of a lower court may be disregarded as ill advised and without effect, the supreme court proceeding to act. First Nat'l Bank v. Planters' Nat'l Bank, 158 Tenn. 50, 12 S.W.2d 528, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 122 (1929).

Order of court of appeals, superseding an interlocutory decree dissolving an injunction previously granted inhibiting the sale of land was dismissed where the decree of the lower court did not operate to predetermine litigated issues or operate as a denial of relief sought. First Nat'l Bank v. Planters Nat'l Bank, 9 Tenn. App. 87, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 218 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 306, 458.

16-4-111. Effect of judgments.

The court of appeals is a court of record, and its judgment shall be executed as provided in the Tennessee rules of appellate procedure.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 13; Shan. Supp., § 6325a13; mod. Code 1932, § 10627; mod. C. Supp. 1950, § 10627; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-411; Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. This section may be affected by T.R.A.P. 42(a), (b) .

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

Cited: Pairamore v. Pairamore, 547 S.W.2d 545, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 559 (Tenn. 1977).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Revivor of Judgment.

The court of appeals has jurisdiction to try any questions, whether of law or fact, in connection with the issuance of a writ of scire facias to revive its judgments or in connection with any subsequent pleadings with reference thereto. Craddock v. Calcutt, 39 Tenn. App. 481, 285 S.W.2d 528, 1955 Tenn. App. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1955).

2. Petition for Certiorari.

Decree of court of appeals is not vacated by petition for certiorari but is simply unenforceable by that court for the period mentioned by this section. Ramsey v. Mutual Supply Co., 221 Tenn. 437, 427 S.W.2d 211, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 473 (1968).

This section was modified by the 1950 code supplement to relieve petitioners for certiorari to review court of appeals judgments from the troublesome task of applying directly to a justice of the supreme court for writs of supersedeas and to relieve the justice of the more troublesome task of making a preliminary review of the record which would be necessary in every petition for review by certiorari. Ramsey v. Mutual Supply Co., 221 Tenn. 437, 427 S.W.2d 211, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 473 (1968).

3. Contempt.

Where a violation of an injunction ordered by the court of appeals is threatened or committed during the period specified in this section, supreme court has the power to enforce such injunction under its inherent power to make orders necessary to an orderly and just appellate procedure. Ramsey v. Mutual Supply Co., 221 Tenn. 437, 427 S.W.2d 211, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 473 (1968).

The court of appeals can after the expiration of the time for review punish the violator of an injunction for contempt of that court. Ramsey v. Mutual Supply Co., 221 Tenn. 437, 427 S.W.2d 211, 1968 Tenn. LEXIS 473 (1968).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 456-459.

16-4-112. Concurrent sessions.

The court shall sit in sections concurrently as ordered by the presiding judge in Knoxville, Nashville and Jackson, for the purpose of hearing and determining cases before it and for such length of time as may, in the judgment of the court, be required for the dispatch of the business before the court at such places.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 8; Shan. Supp., § 6325a8; mod. Code 1932, § 10616; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-412; Acts 1987, ch. 256, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 218.

Law Reviews.

An Examination of The Tennessee Law of Administrative Procedure (George Street Boone), 1 Vand. L. Rev. 339.

16-4-113. Sitting in sections — Assignment of judges.

In order to expedite the trial and decision of cases, the court of appeals, when the court deems it advisable so to do, is authorized and empowered to sit in sections of three (3) judges each, at Knoxville, Nashville and Jackson, to hear and determine cases just as though all twelve (12) members were present and participating; and the presiding judge of the court of appeals shall in such event have the right, from time to time, to assign and reassign the judges and sections.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 4; Shan. Supp., § 6325a4; mod. Code 1932, § 10611; Acts 1978, ch. 836, § 4; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-413.

Law Reviews.

A Simplified System of Appellate Procedure, 17 Tenn. L. Rev. 651. The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Retention.

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

16-4-114. Transfers between grand divisions.

  1. Any case on the docket of the court of appeals, in any grand division, in which any member of the court residing in that grand division is disqualified to participate, upon order of two (2) of the judges residing in the grand division where the case is pending, may be transferred to, tried and determined in the court of appeals sitting in another grand division where no disqualification of judges exists; and a true copy of the order, duly certified by the clerk, together with a certified bill of the costs accrued on the appeal, shall be transmitted with the transcript of the record to the court of appeals in the grand division to which the case is transferred.
  2. The court of appeals is empowered to make all necessary rules to carry out the purpose of this section and to expedite the hearing of such cases.

Acts 1929, ch. 43, §§ 1, 2; Code 1932, §§ 10625, 10626; Acts 1961, ch. 281, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-414.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 219.

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 456, 458.

16-4-115. Rules of appellate procedure govern.

The procedure on appeal in the court of appeals shall be governed by the Tennessee rules of appellate procedure.

Acts 1925, ch. 100, § 9; Shan. Supp., § 6325a9; mod. Code 1932, § 10617; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-415; Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. This section may be affected by T.R.A.P. 24-26.

Chapter 5
Court of Criminal Appeals

16-5-101. Court of criminal appeals established.

There is created and established an appellate court in this state to be designated and styled the court of criminal appeals of Tennessee.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-441.

Cross-References. Power of general assembly to create courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 21.

Law Reviews.

Tennessee Criminal Law: An Overview of the Courts and a Compendium of Tennessee Criminal Procedure (Michael R. Tilley), 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 90.

The Tennessee Court of Appeals: How Often It Corrects the Trial Courts — and Why, 68 Tenn. L. Rev. 557 (2001).

The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals: A Study and Analysis (Daniel J. Foley), 66 Tenn. L. Rev. 427 (1999).

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

Comparative Legislation. Court of criminal appeals:

Ala.  Code § 12-3-1 et seq.

Cited: Columbia Bonding Co. v. State, 225 Tenn. 719, 476 S.W.2d 633, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 306 (1972); Galbreath v. Bd. of Prof'l Responsibility of the Supreme Court of Tenn., 121 S.W.3d 660, 2003 Tenn. LEXIS 1220 (Tenn. 2003).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Retention.

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

16-5-102. Judges — Qualifications.

The court of criminal appeals shall be composed of twelve (12) judges, of whom no more than four (4) shall reside in any grand division of the state. Immediately preceding appointment, each judge shall be at least thirty (30) years of age, shall have been a resident of the state for at least five (5) consecutive years, shall have been a resident of the grand division from which the judge is appointed for at least one (1) year. For purposes of this section, “resident” has the same meaning as defined in § 2-1-104. The judges shall be duly licensed to practice law in this state.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 2; 1969, ch. 330, §§ 1, 2; 1976, ch. 636, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-442; Acts 1996, ch. 847, §§ 1, 2; 2016, ch. 528, § 5.

Compiler's Notes. For the Preamble to the act concerning an orderly procedure for the appointment, confirmation, and retention of appellate court judges as required by Tennessee Constitution, Article VI, Section 3, please refer to Acts 2016, ch. 528.

Amendments. The 2016 amendment rewrote the second sentence which read: “Each judge shall not be less than thirty (30) years of age and shall have been a citizen and resident of the state for at least five (5) years prior to appointment or election under this chapter.”

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 23. January 28, 2016.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch.1, part 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals: A Study and Analysis (Daniel J. Foley), 66 Tenn. L. Rev. 427 (1999).

Attorney General Opinions. Factors used to determine residency status, OAG 95-019 (3/27/95).

Cited: Nix v. State, 1 Tenn. Crim. App. 517, 446 S.W.2d 266, 1969 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 338 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1969); McGee v. State, 2 Tenn. Crim. App. 100, 451 S.W.2d 709, 1969 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 356 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1969).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Residency Requirements.

Since judges of intermediate appellate courts are not assigned to any district or circuit, voting by district or circuit is not required, and this is in no way changed by the requirement that no more than four of the 12 judges on each intermediate appellate court may reside in any one of three grand divisions of Tennessee; a district is a political subdivision, and while a district usually connotes a subunit of a county and may be subject to reconfiguration, a grand division refers to one of three permanently defined, large umbrella units, each composed of many counties and districts, and a grand division is not a district within the meaning of the Constitution. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

Statutes creating the intermediate courts of appeal distinguish between a residency requirement for a candidate for office and residence of voters for purposes of voting in exactly the same way as does the Constitution in establishing the Supreme Court; in both instances, a judicial candidate can be required to live in a certain geographic area as a qualification for office, but still be elected statewide without regard to geographic area in which the qualified voters reside. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

Even if a grand division were deemed to be a district, the statutory limitation on residence by grand division would still be irrelevant, since the judges of the intermediate appellate courts are not assigned to any grand division; the statutory residence requirement by grand division is merely a limiting qualification for the office of intermediate appellate judge, and it is not a limitation on voting. Hooker v. Haslam, 437 S.W.3d 409, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 934 (Tenn. Apr. 23, 2014).

16-5-103. Election of judges — Oath.

  1. The judges of the court of criminal appeals shall be elected by the qualified voters of the state in a statewide retention election conducted in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 1. Vacancies on the court of criminal appeals shall be filled by the governor in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 1.
  2. Their oath of office shall be filed and entered on the minutes of the court in the particular grand division from which the judge has been appointed or elected. The oath shall likewise be filed and entered on the records in the office of the secretary of state at Nashville.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 3; 1969, ch. 330, § 3; 1976, ch. 636, § 2; modified; T.C.A., § 16-443; Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 19.

Compiler's Notes. For the Preamble to the act concerning an orderly procedure for the appointment, confirmation, and retention of appellate court judges as required by Tennessee Constitution, Article VI, Section 3, please refer to Acts 2016, ch. 528.

Amendments. The 2016 amendment in (a), substituted “of the state in a statewide retention election conducted in accordance with title 17, chapter 4, part 1.” for “for a full term of eight (8) years at the same time the regular judicial election is held in this state for the judges of the other courts of record.” and added the second sentence.

Effective Dates. Acts 2016, ch. 528, § 23. January 28, 2016.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch.1, part 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

16-5-104. Limitation of requirements for office.

A judge of the court of criminal appeals shall only be required to qualify as a candidate and be elected by the qualified voters of the state.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 4; modified; T.C.A., § 16-444.

Cross-References. Judges, qualifications, § 16-5-102.

16-5-105. Compensation and expenses — Inability of judge to serve — Replacement.

  1. The compensation of the judges of the court of criminal appeals shall be the same as that received by the judges of the court of appeals.
  2. The necessary travel expense and per diem allowance incurred by the judges in the performance of their official duties under this part shall be paid and reimbursed by the state in the same manner as authorized for the judges of the supreme court and court of appeals.
    1. When a judge of the court of criminal appeals is unable to perform the duties of office on account of absence, sickness, disqualification or other disability, the judge or the clerk of the court shall advise the chief justice of the supreme court of the inability to serve and when so advised, the chief justice may assign a judge of the supreme court, a judge of the court of appeals, a circuit or criminal judge or chancellor or a retired judge of any of those courts to the court of criminal appeals to serve such time as the chief justice may direct, except when it appears to the chief justice that the absence, sickness, disqualification or other disability of a judge of the court of criminal appeals may be protracted, the chief justice shall certify this fact to the governor and the governor shall have the power to commission a person to fill the vacancy during the inability of the judge to serve.
    2. The compensation and expense allowance for the appointed judges shall be the same as for regular judges with proper adjustments being made in the compensation of retired judges or judges of trial courts when serving on the court of criminal appeals so that the maximum received by them will not exceed the pay of the regular judges.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 5; 1968, ch. 414, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-445.

Cross-References. Court of appeals judges, compensation, § 16-4-103.

Court of appeals, payment of expenses, § 16-4-107.

Supreme court, payment of expenses, § 16-3-103.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

Collateral References.

Substitution of judge in state criminal trial. 45 A.L.R.5th 591.

16-5-106. Election of presiding judge — Rules of practice — Special meetings.

  1. The members of the court at the first meeting of the court, after each judicial election, shall choose one (1) of its members as presiding judge of the court of criminal appeals.
  2. The court at its first meeting under this section shall have the authority to adopt and promulgate its own rules of practice, and the rules may be revised from time to time as the court deems advisable and proper.
  3. The presiding judge shall, upon a request of a majority of the members, call special meetings of the court for the purpose of revising or reconsidering its rules of practice, or for any other purpose that may be desired.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 6; T.C.A., § 16-446.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

16-5-107. Places of sitting — Terms — Out of term sittings — Panels and en banc sessions — Majority required for decisions.

  1. The court of criminal appeals shall sit at Knoxville, Nashville, Jackson and such other places as the presiding judge may from time to time designate for the purpose of hearing and deciding cases and such other matters as may come before it for its consideration and determination.
  2. The regular terms of the court of criminal appeals shall be the fourth Monday in June at Knoxville; the third Monday in February at Nashville; and the second Monday in October at Jackson.
  3. The court of criminal appeals may sit at such places as the presiding judge may designate without reference to terms, for the purpose of hearing and deciding cases and other matters before it, and for such period of time as may in the judgment of the court be necessary or required for the prompt and orderly dispatch of the business before the court at such time.
  4. The court of criminal appeals shall sit in panels of three (3) judges. The court may sit en banc, or in panels of five (5) or seven (7) judges, at any regular or special term, in the discretion of the presiding judge thereof, entered upon the minutes of the particular court in each instance. In each such event, the concurrence of a majority of the judges so sitting shall be necessary to constitute a decision of the court.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 7; 1969, ch. 330, § 4; 1973, ch. 395, § 1; 1974, ch. 520, § 1; 1976, ch. 636, § 3; T.C.A., § 16-447; Acts 1996, ch. 704, § 1.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

Cited: Ramey v. Russell, 299 F. Supp. 947, 1969 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8599 (E.D. Tenn. 1969); Weaver v. State, 4 Tenn. Crim. App. 435, 472 S.W.2d 898, 1971 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 508 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1971); Taylor v. State, 4 Tenn. Crim. App. 524, 474 S.W.2d 160, 1971 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 414 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1971).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Retention.

Trial court erred in holding that intermediate appellate judges were subject to retention only by the qualified voters of the grand division in which the judge resided because the General Assembly intend to create one court of appeals and not three. Hooker v. Haslam, 382 S.W.3d 358, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 511 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 27, 2012).

16-5-108. Jurisdiction.

  1. The jurisdiction of the court of criminal appeals shall be appellate only, and shall extend to review of the final judgments of trial courts in:
    1. Criminal cases, both felony and misdemeanor;
    2. Habeas corpus and Post-Conviction Procedure Act proceedings attacking the validity of a final judgment of conviction or the sentence in a criminal case, and other cases or proceedings instituted with reference to or arising out of a criminal case;
    3. Civil or criminal contempt arising out of a criminal matter; and
    4. Extradition cases.
  2. The court or any judge of the court shall also have jurisdiction to grant petitions for certiorari and supersedeas in proper cases within its jurisdiction as provided by law.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 8; 1971, ch. 156, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-448; Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 1; 1994, ch. 609, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 1989, ch. 40, § 4 provided that any action pending on July 1, 1989, shall be maintained under law prior to the 1989 amendment by that act until its final disposition.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), §§ 12.48, 33.100.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 16, 30; 4 Tenn. Juris., Bail and Recognizance, § 11; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 21.

Law Reviews.

Appellate and Post Conviction Relief in Tennessee (Ronald W. Eades), 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 1.

Criminal Appeals as of Right in Tennessee (W. Mark Ward), 31 No. 6 Tenn. B.J. 19 (1995).

“Seeking Justice on Appeal,” 27 No. 4 Tenn. B.J. 28 (1991).

The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals: A Study and Analysis (Daniel J. Foley), 66 Tenn. L. Rev. 427 (1999).

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Certiorari from Supreme Court.

Defendant is entitled to have all meritorious assignments of error considered by court of criminal appeals on appeal although assignments of error without merit need not be referred to in the opinion, and supreme court cannot consider meritorious assignments of error on certiorari until they are considered in court of criminal appeals. Jacobs v. State, 224 Tenn. 106, 450 S.W.2d 581, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 303 (1970), cert. denied, Jacobs v. Tennessee, 404 U.S. 910, 92 S. Ct. 237, 30 L. Ed. 2d 183, 1971 U.S. LEXIS 703 (1971).

2. Forfeiture of Bail Bond.

Appeal from final judgment of forfeiture of bail bond is to court of criminal appeals. Columbia Bonding Co. v. State, 225 Tenn. 719, 476 S.W.2d 633, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 306 (1972).

3. Contempt.

Where witness in civil suit refused to produce written agreement when orally ordered to do so by chancellor and was confined to jail, such contempt was civil, not criminal. Huggins v. Follin, 500 S.W.2d 435, 1973 Tenn. LEXIS 447 (Tenn. 1973).

4. Arising Out of Criminal Case.

An appeal from the denial of a request to attend pretrial proceedings in a criminal case, and the denial of the right of the public and media to intervene and be heard in opposition to motions for closure, is a proceeding “arising out of a criminal case” under this section. State v. Drake, 701 S.W.2d 604, 1985 Tenn. LEXIS 618 (Tenn. 1985).

5. Parole.

Tenn. Code Ann. §  4-5-323 vests appellate jurisdiction of cases brought under the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, ch. 5, in the court of appeals, not the court of criminal appeals; therefore, court of criminal appeals did not have jurisdiction over inmates appeal from chancery court, regarding parole eligibility, regardless of transfer under subdivision (a)(2). Slagle v. Reynolds, 845 S.W.2d 167, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 701 (Tenn. 1992).

6. Review of Special Designation of Judges.

The court of criminal appeals did not have jurisdiction to review the propriety of an order of the supreme court specially designating a judge to hear a post-conviction case. Thompson v. State, 958 S.W.2d 156, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 522 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997).

7. Authority of Court.

Although the court's jurisdiction is appellate, it is not authorized to conduct hearings and determine disputed issues of fact; nonetheless, it does not logically or necessarily follow that during the appellate process a window of opportunity for criminal mayhem, with no accountability or adverse consequences, is thereby opened. State v. Williams, 52 S.W.3d 109, 2001 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 20 (Tenn. Crim. App. 2001).

Defendant's appeal from the trial court restitution order on his reckless endangerment conviction was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction as the restitution order was incomplete and interlocutory in nature where the trial court intended to further adjudicate the particulars of payment at a future date. State v. Comer, 278 S.W.3d 758, 2008 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 296 (Tenn. Crim. App. Apr. 21, 2008).

23. Transfer of Cases.

Because defendant was found guilty of violating a municipal ordinance, the court of criminal appeals was without subject matter jurisdiction to consider the case, and thus, it had to transfer the case to the court of appeals for further adjudication; a circuit court order found defendant guilty of violating a city ordinance for failure to adhere to a stop sign. City of McMinnville v. Hubbard, — S.W.3d —, 2019 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 104 (Tenn. Crim. App. Feb. 20, 2019).

16-5-109. Clerks and marshals — Appeal fees and court costs.

The clerks and marshals of the supreme court shall also act and be the clerks and marshals of the court of criminal appeals. They shall perform the same duties and functions with respect to the court of criminal appeals and be subject to the same liabilities as may be prescribed by law. The appeal fees and court costs in the court of criminal appeals shall be the same as authorized by law, and neither the clerks nor marshals shall receive any additional compensation for their services as clerks and marshals of the court of criminal appeals.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 9; T.C.A., § 16-449.

Cross-References. Fees, § 8-21-501.

Supreme court clerks, title 18, ch. 3.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 6 Tenn. Juris., Clerks of Court, § 12.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Court of Criminal Appeals (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 231.

Cited: State v. Watts, 670 S.W.2d 246, 1984 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 2332 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1984).

16-5-110. Transfer and docketing of cases.

  1. All cases appealed to the court of criminal appeals for the purpose of review shall be filed and docketed with the clerk of the court of criminal appeals for the grand division within which the case arose. All appeal cases originating in the western grand division shall be filed with the clerk of the court of criminal appeals at Jackson. All cases from the middle grand division shall be filed with the clerk of the court at Nashville, and all cases originating in the eastern grand division shall be filed with the clerk of the court at Knoxville.
  2. The court of criminal appeals, in its discretion, may transfer any case, appeal record, or any other matter of business coming before the court from one grand division to another grand division for hearing when the respective parties agree to the transfer. Upon application or motion by either of the parties for the case to be transferred to another grand division, the court, in its discretion, may issue an order of transfer when it finds the ends of justice require, and the transfer is necessary and proper to safeguard the interest of the respective parties or in the interest of the general public welfare.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 10; modified; T.C.A., § 16-450; Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. This section may be affected by T.R.A.P. 17.

Cross-References. Grand divisions, title 4, ch. 1, part 2.

Law Reviews.

The Procedural Details of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, II. Initiation of an Appeal (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 4.

The Procedural Details of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, V. Briefs (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 69.

16-5-111. Effect of judgments.

The court of criminal appeals is a court of record, and its judgment shall be executed as provided in the Tennessee rules of appellate procedure.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 11; T.C.A., § 16-451; Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. This section may be affected by T.R.A.P. 39(b), 39(f), 42(a), 42(b).

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Clerks of Court, § 12.

Law Reviews.

Appellate and Post Conviction Relief in Tennessee (Ronald W. Eades), 5 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 1.

The Procedural Details of the Proposed Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, VII. Disposition of Appeals (John L. Sobieski, Jr.), 46 Tenn. L. Rev. 90.

Cited: Cole v. State, 223 Tenn. 20, 442 S.W.2d 246, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 385 (1969); Rose v. Hodges, 423 U.S. 19, 96 S. Ct. 175, 46 L. Ed. 2d 162, 1975 U.S. LEXIS 93 (1975).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Construction with § 16-5-112.

The period specified by this section after which a judgment of the court of criminal appeals becomes final does not limit the time provided by § 16-5-112 (repealed) for petition for certiorari to the supreme court. Gossett v. State, 224 Tenn. 374, 455 S.W.2d 585, 1970 Tenn. LEXIS 385 (1970).

16-5-112. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-5-112 (Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 12; 1975, ch. 75, § 1; 1975, ch. 77, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-452) concerning certiorari from the supreme court was repealed by Acts 1981, ch. 449, § 1(1). For present provisions, see T.R.A.P. 11.

16-5-113. Office space for judges — Rental allowance — Secretaries — Salaries and travel expense.

Each judge of the court of criminal appeals shall be furnished office space in the county of the judge's residence by the state. In the event no office space is available either from the state or county, then each judge shall receive the same monthly allowance from the state as authorized by law for office rental expense. Likewise, each judge of the court of criminal appeals shall have a secretary, and the salary and travel expense allowance of the secretary shall be the same as authorized by law for the secretary of each judge of the court of appeals.

Acts 1967, ch. 226, § 13; T.C.A., § 16-453.

Chapter 6
Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act (“CJVC”) of 2015

16-6-101. Chapter definitions.

As used in this chapter:

  1. “Nonadversarial approach” means that the district attorney general and the defense attorney work together for the benefit of the veterans treatment court program participants and the program; and
  2. “Veterans treatment court program” means a stand-alone veterans treatment court program established by a judge of a court of this state exercising criminal jurisdiction or a veterans court track created within an existing certified drug court.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 3.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

16-6-102. Powers of veterans treatment court program.

A veterans treatment court program shall have the same powers as the court that created it. Any disagreements shall be resolved prior to court and not in front of the participants.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 4.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

16-6-103. Key components of veterans treatment court programs.

All veterans treatment court programs in this state shall be established and operated according to the following ten (10) key components as adopted by the National Clearinghouse for Veterans Treatment Courts at the National Association of Drug Court Professionals:

  1. Veterans treatment courts integrate alcohol and drug treatment and mental health services with justice system case processing;
  2. Veterans treatment courts promote public safety while protecting participants' due process rights by prosecution and defense counsel using a nonadversarial approach;
  3. Veterans treatment courts identify eligible participants early and promptly place them in the veterans treatment court program;
  4. Veterans treatment courts provide access to a continuum of alcohol, drug, mental health, and other related treatment and rehabilitation services;
  5. Veterans treatment courts monitor abstinence by frequent alcohol and other drug testing;
  6. Veterans treatment courts establish a coordinated strategy to govern responses to participants' compliance;
  7. Veterans treatment courts maintain ongoing judicial interaction with each veteran as an essential component of the program;
  8. Veterans treatment courts utilize monitoring and evaluation to measure the achievement of program goals and gauge effectiveness;
  9. Veterans treatment courts employ continuing interdisciplinary education and training to promote effective veterans treatment court planning, implementation, and operations; and
  10. Veterans treatment courts forge partnerships among the court, the veterans administration, public agencies, and community-based organizations to generate local support and enhance veterans treatment court effectiveness.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 5.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

16-6-104. Administration by department of mental health and substance abuse services.

The department of mental health and substance abuse services shall administer veterans treatment court programs by:

  1. Defining, developing, and gathering outcome measures for veterans treatment court programs, established by this chapter;
  2. Collecting, reporting, and disseminating veterans court treatment program data;
  3. Supporting a state veterans treatment mentor program;
  4. Sponsoring and coordinating state veterans treatment court program training;
  5. Awarding, administering, and evaluating state veterans treatment court program grants;
  6. Developing standards of operation for veterans treatment court programs to ensure there is a significant population of veterans in the criminal justice system willing to volunteer to participate in veterans treatment court programs so that funds are allocated to meet the greatest need; and
  7. Establishing three (3) veterans treatment court advisory committee member positions on the drug court advisory committee established by § 16-22-108.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 6.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

16-6-105. Application for veterans treatment court program grant funds — Use of funds.

Through the department of mental health and substance abuse services, a court exercising criminal jurisdiction within this state or a veterans treatment court program may apply for veterans treatment court program grant funds established in § 16-22-109(e)(4), if funds are available, to:

  1. Fund a full-time or part-time program director position;
  2. Fund veterans treatment court program staff whose job duties are directly related to program operations;
  3. Fund substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment, and other direct services for veterans treatment court program participants;
  4. Fund drug testing;
  5. Fund program costs directly related to program operations; and
  6. Implement or continue veterans treatment court program operations.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 7.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

16-6-106. Prohibited uses of veterans treatment court program grant awards.

The department of mental health and substance abuse services veterans treatment court program grant awards shall not be:

  1. Used to pay for costs not directly related to veterans treatment court program operations;
  2. Made to any court that does not agree to operate its veterans treatment court program in accordance with the principles set out in this chapter;
  3. Used for construction or land acquisition;
  4. Used to pay bonuses or commissions to any individuals or organizations; or
  5. Used to form a corporation.

Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 8.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 1 provided that the act, which enacted this chapter, shall be known and may be cited as the “Criminal Justice Veterans Compensation Act of 2015” or the “CJVC Act.”

For the Preamble to the act concerning the establishment of specialized veterans treatment courts, see Acts 2015, ch. 453.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 453, § 15. July 1, 2015.

Chapters 7-9
[Reserved]

Chapter 10
Circuit and Criminal Courts

Part 1
Jurisdiction and Powers

16-10-101. General jurisdiction.

The circuit court is a court of general jurisdiction, and the judge of the circuit court shall administer right and justice according to law, in all cases where the jurisdiction is not conferred upon another tribunal.

Code 1858, § 4225 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 7); Shan., § 6063; Code 1932, § 10318; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-501.

Cross-References. Bonds of county officers, duties, §§ 8-19-2058-19-208.

Exclusive original jurisdiction of juvenile court, § 37-1-103.

Personal injury or death cases in chancery or circuit courts, reports, § 16-21-111.

State system of personnel administration, § 8-30-101 et seq.

Textbooks. Pritchard on Wills and Administration of Estates (4th ed., Phillips and Robinson), § 338.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 10 Tenn. Juris., Elections, § 18; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judges, § 9; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

Laches at Law in Tennessee, 28 U. Mem. L. Rev. 211 (1997).

The Tennessee Court of Appeals: How Often It Corrects the Trial Courts — and Why, 68 Tenn. L. Rev. 557 (2001).

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Comparative Legislation. Circuit courts:

Ala.  Code § 12-11-1 et seq.

Ark.  Code § 16-13-201 et seq.

Ga. O.C.G.A. § 15-6-1 et seq.

Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 23A.010 et seq.

Miss.  Code Ann. § 9-7-1 et seq.

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 478.010 et seq.

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 7A-130 et seq.

Va. Code § 17-116.1 et seq.

Cited: Harris v. Nashville Trust Co., 5 Tenn. Civ. App. (5 Higgins) 678 (1914); State v. Bockman, 139 Tenn. 422, 201 S.W. 741, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 118 (1917); Roberts v. Vaughn, 142 Tenn. 361, 219 S.W. 1034, 1919 Tenn. LEXIS 65, 9 A.L.R. 1528 (1920); Carriger v. Morristown, 148 Tenn. 585, 256 S.W. 883, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1923).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

Circuit court has jurisdiction of suits in an equitable nature in absence of demurrer to jurisdiction as provided in § 16-10-111. Hewgley v. Trice, 207 Tenn. 466, 340 S.W.2d 918, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 482 (1960).

2. Original Jurisdiction.

Where jurisdiction is not conferred on some other court, the circuit court has original jurisdiction. Staples v. Brown, 113 Tenn. 639, 85 S.W. 254, 1904 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1904); Johnson v. White, 171 Tenn. 536, 106 S.W.2d 222, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1937).

Concomitant with any given court's authority to adjudicate certain types of cases between parties properly subject to being haled into that court is the obligation to exercise that authority in all cases where the jurisdiction is not conferred upon another tribunal. Young v. Kittrell, 833 S.W.2d 505, 1992 Tenn. App. LEXIS 120 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1992).

3. Election Contests.

The circuit court takes jurisdiction to try a contest over the election of mayor of a city, under the provision of this section. Baker v. Mitchell, 105 Tenn. 610, 59 S.W. 137, 1900 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1900); Adcock v. Houk, 122 Tenn. 269, 122 S.W. 979, 1909 Tenn. LEXIS 22 (1909); Taylor v. Carr, 125 Tenn. 235, 141 S.W. 745, 1911 Tenn. LEXIS 21 (1911).

The provision of this section does not deprive the chancery court of its jurisdiction to restrain the exercise of unconstitutional powers, and chancery may restrain the removal of a county seat, for want of the requisite vote, for such suit is not a contested election case. Lindsay v. Allen, 112 Tenn. 637, 82 S.W. 171, 1904 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1904).

Contest of an election to determine whether a county should take stock in a railroad was not an election contest falling within the jurisdiction of the circuit court under the provisions of this section but was an action which regularly should have been brought in chancery court. Catlett v. Knoxville, S. & E. R. Co., 120 Tenn. 699, 112 S.W. 559, 1908 Tenn. LEXIS 52 (1908).

Cases involving annexation of corporate territory, county subscriptions to railroad companies and removal of county seats are not in the classification of contested elections so as to fall within the jurisdiction of the circuit court but are under the class of cases where the chancery court restrains officers from the exercise of unconstitutional power. Adcock v. Houk, 122 Tenn. 269, 122 S.W. 979, 1909 Tenn. LEXIS 22 (1909).

This statute is broad and comprehensive and affords a remedy in an election contest where it is not conferred upon any other tribunal. Johnson v. White, 171 Tenn. 536, 106 S.W.2d 222, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1937).

4. —Cumulative Jurisdiction of City Council.

A city council is not a “judicial tribunal,” within the meaning of this section, and the circuit court is not deprived of its original jurisdiction by giving a city council only cumulative jurisdiction of contested election. Taylor v. Carr, 125 Tenn. 235, 141 S.W. 745, 1911 Tenn. LEXIS 21 (1911).

5. City Board of Censors.

Circuit court properly granted writ of certiorari to review action of board of censors of city of Memphis so as to try de novo and pass upon the merits of the controversy. Binford v. Carline, 9 Tenn. App. 364, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 246 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928).

6. Juvenile Court.

Circuit court has jurisdiction in an action of common-law certiorari to correct a pretrial action of juvenile court. State v. Womack, 591 S.W.2d 437, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

7. Effect of Possible Transfer.

A possible transfer to criminal court is not sufficient grounds for negating the statutory general authority of the circuit court in favor of the specific, limited authority of the criminal court which does not arise until transfer. State v. Womack, 591 S.W.2d 437, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

8. Judicial Immunity.

Court of general jurisdiction of Tennessee and its presiding judge cannot be sued for acts done in exercise of judicial function. Wood v. Circuit Court of Warren County, 331 F. Supp. 1245, 1971 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13389 (E.D. Tenn. 1971).

9. Construction with Other Sections.

This section deals with the general powers and jurisdiction of the circuit court and in no way modifies the provisions of § 16-10-106. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

10. Child Support Decrees.

Circuit court, under its powers to administer justice in all cases where jurisdiction was not conferred upon another tribunal, had jurisdiction to modify child support decree originally granted by subsequently abolished county court. Jarvis v. Jarvis, 664 S.W.2d 694, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 715 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

11. Action for Contribution.

An action for contribution is within the circuit court's general jurisdiction. Young v. Kittrell, 833 S.W.2d 505, 1992 Tenn. App. LEXIS 120 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1992).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 87, 88, 91.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 11, 456.

Disqualification of judge on ground of being a witness in the case. 22 A.L.R.3d 1198.

Res judicata as affected by limitation of jurisdiction of court which rendered judgment. 83 A.L.R.2d 977.

16-10-102. Criminal jurisdiction.

The circuit court has exclusive original jurisdiction of all crimes and misdemeanors, either at common law or by statute, unless otherwise expressly provided by statute or this code.

Code 1858, § 4226 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 19, § 3); Shan., § 6064; mod. Code 1932, § 10319; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-502.

Cross-References. Original jurisdiction of criminal matters, § 40-1-108.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Attorney General Opinions. Jurisdiction of juvenile courts over misdemeanors of child abuse and neglect and contributing to delinquency, OAG 93-24 (3/29/93).

Cited: State v. McFarland, 638 S.W.2d 416, 1982 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 378 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1982); State v. Keller, 813 S.W.2d 146, 1991 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 214 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1991); State v. Nixon, 977 S.W.2d 119, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 1202 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997); State v. Booher, 978 S.W.2d 953, 1997 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 799 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1997); Clinton Books, Inc. v. City of Memphis, 197 S.W.3d 749, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 313 (Tenn. 2006); Haynie v. Bell, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 486 (Tenn. Crim. App. June 22, 2007); Brewer v. State, — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 266 (Tenn. Crim. App. Apr. 8, 2008); Blackwell v. Haslam, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 23 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 11, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Effect of Statute.

The moment an offense was made a misdemeanor, it became an offense cognizable in the circuit and criminal courts by operation of this section. State v. O'Hara, 1 Shan. 457 (1875).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 87, 88, 91.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 11, 19.

Const. Law 65.

16-10-103. Will contests.

The circuit court has jurisdiction to try and determine all issues made up to contest the validity of last wills and testaments.

Code 1858, § 4227 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 9); Shan., § 6065; Code 1932, § 10320; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-503; Acts 1991, ch. 152, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 12 Tenn. Juris., Executors and Administrators, § 5; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: State v. Lancaster, 119 Tenn. 638, 105 S.W. 858, 1907 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1907); Scott v. Atkins, 44 Tenn. App. 353, 314 S.W.2d 52, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 161 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957); In re Estate of Powers, 767 S.W.2d 659, 1988 Tenn. App. LEXIS 756 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. In General.

Where certain papers were offered for probate as will in county court and heirs at law appeared and contested the validity of the alleged will and the county court ordered that the fact of contest be certified to the circuit court and that the original papers be certified to the circuit court this was sufficient to vest the circuit court with jurisdiction. Druen v. Hudson, 17 Tenn. App. 428, 68 S.W.2d 146, 1933 Tenn. App. LEXIS 77 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1933).

2. More than One Will Propounded.

More than one will may be propounded to a jury in a circuit court during the trial of issues of devisavit vel non. Lillard v. Tolliver, 154 Tenn. 304, 285 S.W. 576, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 117 (1926).

3. Interest to Contest.

A testatrix's husband had sufficient interest to contest will where they were beneficiaries under a prior will and testatrix left no other relatives by blood or marriage. Melody v. Hamblin, 21 Tenn. App. 687, 115 S.W.2d 237, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 69 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937).

4. Proponent Relying on Estoppel as to Sanity.

Proponent of will may rely on defense that contestant is estopped to contest on ground of insanity of testator, though proponent failed to plead estoppel specially, the contest being treated as legal action and not suit in equity. Melody v. Hamblin, 21 Tenn. App. 687, 115 S.W.2d 237, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 69 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937).

5. Ascertaining Fees.

In a will contest, the circuit court after a compromise judgment, may refer the cause to the clerk to ascertain fees of counsel of infant contestant. Roberts v. Vaughn, 142 Tenn. 361, 219 S.W. 1034, 1919 Tenn. LEXIS 65, 9 A.L.R. 1528 (1920).

Decisions Under Prior Law

1. Exclusiveness of Jurisdiction.

Jurisdiction to try an issue of devisavit vel non is exclusively in the circuit court, and the chancery court has no jurisdiction to try such issue. Section 16-11-102 does not confer this jurisdiction on the chancery court. The chancery court cannot even try the issue as an incident in a suit involving other matter of proper equitable congizance, but should direct the parties to take appropriate steps to secure such a trial in the circuit court. Simmons v. Leonard, 89 Tenn. 622, 15 S.W. 444, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 86 (1891); Simmons v. Leonard, 91 Tenn. 183, 18 S.W. 280, 1891 Tenn. LEXIS 92, 30 Am. St. Rep. 875 (1892).

The jurisdiction of the circuit court is exclusive in the matter of the contest of wills; therefore a chancery court cannot entertain and try an issue of devisavit vel non although it is presented in connection with matters of equitable cognizance. Muse v. Sluder, 600 S.W.2d 237, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 347 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 11, 299.

Courts 485, 487 (1, 5, 7, 10).

16-10-104. Restoration of citizenship.

The circuit court has exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine applications to be restored to citizenship, made by persons who have been rendered infamous by the judgment of any court of this state.

Code 1858, § 4228 (deriv. Acts 1851-1852, ch. 30, § 1); Shan., § 6066; Code 1932, § 10321; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-504.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 6 Tenn. Juris., Citizenship, § 2; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

Tennessee Civil Disabilities: A Systematic Approach (Neil P. Cohen), 41 Tenn. L. Rev. 253.

Cited: In re Curtis, 6 Tenn. Civ. App. (6 Higgins) 12 (1915).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 11, 490.

Courts 472.1.

16-10-105. Arbitrations and agreed cases.

The circuit court has jurisdiction to enter judgments on awards of arbitrators and to hear and determine agreed cases.

Code 1858, § 4229 (deriv. Acts 1851-1852, ch. 173); Shan., § 6067; Code 1932, § 10322; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-505.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Kelly v. Milan, 21 F. 842, 1884 U.S. App. LEXIS 2460 (C.C.D. Tenn. 1884).

16-10-106. Contractual debts and demands.

The circuit court has jurisdiction, concurrent with courts of general sessions, to the extent of the jurisdiction of the courts of general sessions, of all debts and demands on contract over fifty dollars ($50.00).

Code 1858, § 4230 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 7); Shan., § 6068; Code 1932, § 10323; impl. am. Acts 1979, ch. 68, §§ 2, 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-506.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22; 19 Tenn. Juris., Motions and Summary Proceedings, § 5.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Lee v. Hall, 790 S.W.2d 293, 1990 Tenn. App. LEXIS 168 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1990).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Effect of Other Statutes.

A statute increasing the jurisdiction of justices of the peace (now general sessions court) does not operate to abridge the existing jurisdiction of the circuit court. Taylor, Cole & McLeod v. Pope, 45 Tenn. 413, 1868 Tenn. LEXIS 23 (1868), overruled, A. J. Roach & Co. v. Turk, 56 Tenn. 708, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 196, 24 Am. Rep. 360 (1872).

Section 16-10-101 deals with the general powers and jurisdiction of the circuit court and in no way modifies the provisions of this section. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

2. Basis of Jurisdiction.

The jurisdiction of the court does not depend upon the result of the case, but on the amount of the “debt or demand” constituting the foundation of the suit. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

3. Establishment of Prima Facie Jurisdiction.

If the debt or demand set forth in the declaration exceeds $50.00 the court has prima facie jurisdiction. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

4. Issue as to Jurisdictional Amount.

Where the writ and declaration are for a sum sufficiently large to give the court jurisdiction, the judgment will be valid, though it be for a sum less than the jurisdictional sum, unless the defendant put the question of jurisdiction in issue by plea in abatement resting the point on the sum actually in dispute. Ross v. Jackson, 3 Tenn. 406, 1 Cooke, 1813 Tenn. LEXIS 48 (1813); Martin v. Carter, 9 Tenn. 489, 1831 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1831); Covington v. Neilson, 14 Tenn. 474, 14 Tenn. 475, 1834 Tenn. LEXIS 117 (1834). See Jourdan v. Barry, 5 Tenn. 102, 1817 Tenn. LEXIS 63 (1817); Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

If the value of the debt or demand is less than $50.00, although averred in the declaration to be over $50.00, a plea in abatement to the jurisdiction of the circuit court will lie. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Bradley, 178 Tenn. 317, 157 S.W.2d 829, 1941 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1942).

5. Mechanic's Liens.

The circuit court has no jurisdiction to enforce mechanic's lien where amount does not exceed $50.00. Phillips-Burtoff Mfg. Co. v. Campbell, 93 Tenn. 469, 25 S.W. 961, 1893 Tenn. LEXIS 74 (1894).

16-10-107. Change of name — Legitimation.

The circuit court and the chancery court have concurrent jurisdiction to change and alter the names of persons and to legitimate children.

Code 1858, § 4231 (deriv. Acts 1805, ch. 2); Shan., § 6069; Code 1932, § 10324; impl. am. Acts 1951, ch. 202; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-507; Acts 1984, ch. 682, § 1.

Cross-References. Paternity and legitimation, title 36, ch. 2, part 3.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

Change of Names, Legitimation, and Adoption, 19 Tenn. L. Rev. 418.

Cited: Milwaukee Ins. Co. v. Gordon, 54 Tenn. App. 279, 390 S.W.2d 680, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 153 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

Collateral References.

Circumstances justifying grant denial or denial of petition to change adult's name. 79 A.L.R.3d 562.

Right of married woman to use maiden surname. 67 A.L.R.3d 1266.

Courts 472.3.

16-10-108. Divorce — Adoption — Trustees.

The circuit court has concurrent jurisdiction with the chancery court to grant divorces, to authorize the adoption of children, to release testamentary and other trustees, and to appoint trustees in place of those released or dead, and also to decree, on petitions of trustees, by will or otherwise, for the sale of property, real or personal.

Code 1858, § 4232 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 19, § 4; 1835-1836, ch. 20, § 1; 1845-1846, ch. 194; 1847-1848, ch. 13); Shan., § 6070; Code 1932, § 10325; Acts 1951, ch. 202, § 40 (Williams, § 9572.52); T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-508.

Cross-References. Adoption, title 36, ch. 1.

Appointment and removal of trustees, title 35, ch. 1.

Divorce and annulment, title 36, ch. 4.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 9 Tenn. Juris., Divorce and Alimony, §§ 2, 18; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Davis v. Davis, 87 Tenn. 200, 10 S.W. 363, 1888 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1889); Leach v. Cowan, 125 Tenn. 182, 140 S.W. 1070, 1911 Tenn. LEXIS 18 (1911); Rains v. Rains, 58 Tenn. App. 214, 428 S.W.2d 650, 1968 Tenn. App. LEXIS 295 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1968); In re Shumate, 39 B.R. 808, 1984 Bankr. LEXIS 5780 (Bankr. E.D. Tenn. 1984); Sizemore v. Sizemore, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 486 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 30, 2007).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Misjoinder of Actions.

Where a party filed suit for divorce in a court of law, therewith also seeking to have a deed from the state set aside, there was a manifest misjoinder of actions, and the same were appropriately severed, and, as that phase of the action relating to the deed involved matters peculiarly and exclusively with the jurisdiction of equity, subsequent proceedings at law on the question of the deed where properly enjoined, this section and § 16-10-109 being considered inapplicable. McGee v. Carter, 31 Tenn. App. 141, 212 S.W.2d 902, 1948 Tenn. App. LEXIS 78 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1948).

3. Jurisdiction.

Trial court had subject matter jurisdiction to hear a father's petition for change of custody because the statute was not applicable; the allegations in the petition were not tantamount to allegations of dependency and neglect under the statute but were more in the nature of a disagreement over the long-term manner of addressing the children's psychological, behavioral, and educational issues. Holley v. Holley, 420 S.W.3d 756, 2013 Tenn. App. LEXIS 361 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 31, 2013), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2013 Tenn. LEXIS 794 (Tenn. Oct. 16, 2013).

Mother was not entitled to relief from the circuit court's judgment entering a modified Permanent Parenting Plan (PPP) because the father appropriately filed his petition seeking modification of the PPP in the circuit court, which possessed continuing, exclusive subject matter jurisdiction of divorce decrees. Cox v. Lucas, — S.W.3d —, 2019 Tenn. LEXIS 218 (Tenn. May 29, 2019).

Trial court had jurisdiction over a divorce action and thus, properly exercised its jurisdiction to order foreign land sold and equitably divide and distribute the proceeds from the sale of the marital property because it sought to compel the husband, his brother, and his sister-in-law to convey the land so as to realize the wife's marital share of the assets transferred during the pendency of the divorce; the order did not attempt to set aside the transactions relating to the property. Sekik v. Abdelnabi, — S.W.3d —, 2020 Tenn. App. LEXIS 516 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 18, 2020).

Collateral References.

Court's power to appoint additional trustees over number specified on trust instrument. 59 A.L.R.3d 1129.

Validity and construction of statutory provision relating to jurisdiction of court for purpose of divorce for servicemen. 73 A.L.R.3d 431.

Courts 472.1.

16-10-109. Partition and sale of property.

The circuit court has concurrent jurisdiction with the chancery and county courts to make partition and distribution; and, for this purpose, to sell property, real or personal, if necessary, or manifestly to the interest of the parties; and to sell land to pay debts of decedents where the personal assets are insufficient.

Code 1858, § 4233 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 19, § 4; 1835-1836, ch. 20, § 1); Shan., § 6071; Code 1932, § 10326; Acts 1976, ch. 529, § 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-509.

Cross-References.  Distribution, partition, and sale of realty in certain counties, § 16-16-108.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 124; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Summers v. Conger, 43 Tenn. App. 286, 307 S.W.2d 936, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 116 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Sale of Lands.

Circuit court's jurisdiction is concurrent with that of the chancery and county courts for the sale of lands for partition and to pay debts of a decedent. Moore's Adm'rs v. Widow & Heirs, 30 Tenn. 512, 1851 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1851); Parker v. Britt, 51 Tenn. 243, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 154 (1871); Thompson v. Mebane, 51 Tenn. 370, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 177 (1871); Kindell v. Titus, 56 Tenn. 727, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 198 (1872); Connell v. Walker, 74 Tenn. 709, 1881 Tenn. LEXIS 201 (1881); Davis v. Davis, 87 Tenn. 200, 10 S.W. 363, 1888 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1889); Bashaw v. Temple, 115 Tenn. 596, 91 S.W. 202, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 93 (1906); Key v. Harris, 116 Tenn. 161, 92 S.W. 235, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 15 (1905); Puckett v. Wynns, 132 Tenn. 513, 178 S.W. 1184, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 41 (1915).

2. Matters Not Constituting Partition.

A petition of widow seeking to have substituted for unassigned dower and homestead title in fee to a portion of the realty was not a petition seeking partition. Gillespie v. Jackson, 153 Tenn. 150, 281 S.W. 929, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 14 (1926).

3. Compelling Accounting.

The court has no jurisdiction to compel a personal representative to account at suit of a distributee. Dougherty v. Maxwell, 25 Tenn. 446, 1846 Tenn. LEXIS 18 (1846).

The court has no jurisdiction to compel settlement of matters of equitable accounting against guardian at instance of ward. Taylor v. Keeton, 29 Tenn. 536, 1850 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1850).

4. Time of Making Allotment.

Court should not as a matter of practice attempt to determine questions relating to the allotment of homestead and dower until commissioners have been appointed and have reported their findings. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

Collateral References.

Contractual provisions as affecting right to judicial partition. 37 A.L.R.3d 962.

Courts 472.1.

16-10-110. Abatement of nuisances.

The circuit court is clothed with all the powers of the chancery court to abate nuisances, in an action brought for recovery of damages resulting from a nuisance, upon the finding of a jury that the subject matter of a complaint is a nuisance, and judgment entered thereon.

Code 1858, § 4235; Shan., § 6073; Code 1932, § 10328; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-510.

Cross-References. Abatement of nuisances, title 29, ch. 3.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Collateral References.

Right to maintain action to enjoin public nuisance as affected by existence of pollution control agency. 60 A.L.R.3d 665.

Nuisance 28.

16-10-111. Equity powers.

Any suit of an equitable nature, brought in the circuit court, where objection has not been taken to the jurisdiction, may be transferred to the chancery court of the county, or heard and determined by the circuit court upon the principles of a court of equity, with power to order and take all proper accounts, and otherwise to perform the functions of a chancery court.

Code 1858, § 4236 (deriv. Acts 1851-1852, ch. 152, § 9); Shan., § 6074; mod. Code 1932, § 10329; Acts 1972, ch. 565, § 2; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-511.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 8, 9, 56, 444.

Pritchard on Wills and Administration of Estates (4th ed., Phillips and Robinson), § 776.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 118; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 2, 21-29, 32; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22; 19 Tenn. Juris., Municipal, State and County Aid, § 7; 22 Tenn. Juris., Rescission, Cancellation and Reformation, § 33.

Law Reviews.

A Little Bit of Laches Goes a Long Way: Notes on Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc., 67 Vand. L. Rev. En Banc 1 (2014).

Laches at Law in Tennessee, 28 U. Mem. L. Rev. 211 (1997).

The Supreme Court and the New Equity, 68 Vand. L. Rev. 997 (2015).

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Finch v. Frymire, 36 S.W. 883, 1896 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 13 (1896); United States, use of Brading-Marshal Lumber Co. v. Wells, 203 F. 146, 1913 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 1718 (D. Tenn. 1913); Sullivan v. Eason, 8 Tenn. App. 429, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 156 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928); McGee v. Carter, 31 Tenn. App. 141, 212 S.W.2d 902, 1948 Tenn. App. LEXIS 78 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1948); Gilley v. Jernigan, 597 S.W.2d 313, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 395 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979); Clinton Books, Inc. v. City of Memphis, 197 S.W.3d 749, 2006 Tenn. LEXIS 313 (Tenn. 2006); In re Estate of Brown, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 541 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 4, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Jurisdiction in General.

Where the jurisdiction is not demurred to, the plaintiff's suit of equitable cognizance will not be dismissed, but the circuit judge may, at his discretion, transfer the cause to the chancery court, or retain and determine it himself upon the principles of equity and according to the practice of the chancery court. Sewanee Mining Co. v. E. L. Best Co., 40 Tenn. 701, 1859 Tenn. LEXIS 206 (1859); Hall v. Jacocks, 52 Tenn. 84, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 237 (1871); Smith v. Leonard, 1 Shan. 604 (1876); Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Humphrey, 167 Tenn. 421, 70 S.W.2d 361, 1933 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1934).

The circuit court has jurisdiction to enforce equitable remedies where no objection is made. Hunt v. Hoppe, 22 Tenn. App. 540, 124 S.W.2d 306, 1938 Tenn. App. LEXIS 55 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1938).

This section has no application where an action may be filed either in a court of law or a court of chancery and the rule then applies that the court first obtaining jurisdiction shall retain the same. Hamilton Nat'l Bank v. Champion, 202 Tenn. 205, 303 S.W.2d 731, 1957 Tenn. LEXIS 381 (1957).

This section is not a denial of circuit court's jurisdiction of suits of an equitable nature but rather a recognition of such jurisdiction if not challenged by demurrer. Hewgley v. Trice, 207 Tenn. 466, 340 S.W.2d 918, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 482 (1960).

This section pertains to original, not appellate, jurisdiction of the circuit court. Riden v. Snider, 832 S.W.2d 341, 1991 Tenn. App. LEXIS 901 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1991), appeal denied, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 299 (Tenn. Mar. 30, 1992).

2. Specific Instances of Jurisdiction.

The circuit court has jurisdiction of a suit to invalidate the declared result of an election held to determine whether a county should subscribe to the capital stock of a railroad company, where no objection was made by demurrer. Catlett v. Knoxville, S. & E. R. Co., 120 Tenn. 699, 112 S.W. 559, 1908 Tenn. LEXIS 52 (1908).

Where there was no demurrer to jurisdiction, the circuit court had jurisdiction of a suit for the annulment of a marriage. Southern R. Co. v. Baskette, 175 Tenn. 253, 133 S.W.2d 498, 1939 Tenn. LEXIS 37 (1939).

Where jurisdiction of circuit court to pass on issues raised on appeal to circuit court from county court's dismissal of petition by heir to determine validity of claim against decedent's estate was not questioned, circuit court had jurisdiction to pass on such issues. Brigham v. Southern Trust Co., 201 Tenn. 466, 300 S.W.2d 880, 1957 Tenn. LEXIS 325 (1957).

In personal injury action against master brought in circuit court where defendant raised issue that plaintiff had given its servant, who was primarily negligent, a release and plaintiff joined issue asserting that the instrument was a covenant not to sue, court had authority to construe instrument in view of its ultimate result and properly held that instrument was a covenant not to sue and that such covenant would bar suit against master who was only liable as a result of servant's negligence. Stewart v. Craig, 208 Tenn. 212, 344 S.W.2d 761, 1961 Tenn. LEXIS 413 (1961).

Although physician had told person that she had a possible whiplash injury which might give trouble in the future, a release executed by her husband releasing defendant from “all known, unknown, foreseen, and unforeseen, bodily and personal injuries” and property damage caused by the accident, and the amount paid for such release only covered the cost of repairing the automobile and the loss of its use, plus the cost of a physical examination where the party did not realize the extent of the injuries at the time of the execution of such release, it was a question for the jury to determine whether such release was executed under a mutual mistake of material fact. Warren v. Crockett, 211 Tenn. 173, 364 S.W.2d 352, 1962 Tenn. LEXIS 353 (1962).

Independent suit seeking rescission of lease contract might be maintained in circuit court in absence of objection by demurrer, but a plea claiming recoupment was not such an action and could not be brought within the provisions of this section. Cummings & Co. v. Mascari, 55 Tenn. App. 512, 402 S.W.2d 719, 1965 Tenn. App. LEXIS 264 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1965).

3. Jurisdiction Upon Demurrer.

The circuit court possesses no equity jurisdiction, except such as is expressly conferred upon it by statute, and, to maintain its jurisdiction, where objection thereto is taken by demurrer, a state of facts must be shown to exist, falling within the provisions of the statute. Arrington v. Grissom, 41 Tenn. 522, 1860 Tenn. LEXIS 99 (1860).

Upon demurrer to its jurisdiction on ground that suit is equitable in nature, circuit court has jurisdiction to pass on such demurrer and determine the nature of the suit. Hewgley v. Trice, 207 Tenn. 466, 340 S.W.2d 918, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 482 (1960).

Suit for reformation of contract of insurance was of an equitable nature and could not be maintained as an action at law where objection was raised to jurisdiction of circuit court by demurrer. Milwaukee Ins. Co. v. Gordon, 54 Tenn. App. 279, 390 S.W.2d 680, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 153 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

4. Election as to Forum.

Where, in a proceeding by certiorari and supersedeas to quash a levy on exempt property, the defense was that the debtor had given the creditor a lien on the property by the note on which the judgment was rendered, and thereupon the debtor filed an amended petition, alleging that the provisions of the note giving a lien was inserted by the creditor, without his knowledge, the whole litigation should be tried in one forum, and the creditor was given his election to withdraw all objection to the jurisdiction of the law court over the matter of the amended petitions, or to suffer the levy to be quashed without prejudice to his remedy in equity. Mynatt v. Magill, 71 Tenn. 72, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 36 (1879).

5. Forms and Rules of Procedure.

A suit of an equitable nature is heard and determined in circuit court according to forms and rules of chancery pleading. Shelby County v. Bickford, 102 Tenn. 395, 52 S.W. 772, 1899 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1899).

Divorce cases, even though tried in the circuit court, are treated as chancery suits. Murrell v. Murrell, 45 Tenn. App. 309, 323 S.W.2d 15, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 129 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

6. —Agreement of Parties — Effect.

A suit brought in the circuit court may, by agreement of the parties, be tried as a chancery cause in that court, and orders, references, and reports made as in chancery. Husky v. Maples, 42 Tenn. 25, 1865 Tenn. LEXIS 6 (1865).

7. —Procedure after Transfer to Chancery.

The proceedings subsequent to the transfer of a case from the circuit court to the chancery court are according to the forms and rules of chancery pleading and practice; and, upon appeal, the hearing will be de novo upon the record as its component parts may appear, and there is no presumption, as in cases at law in the absence of a bill of exceptions, that the evidence below was sufficient to sustain the finding of the court. Shelby County v. Bickford, 102 Tenn. 395, 52 S.W. 772, 1899 Tenn. LEXIS 61 (1899); Leiberman, Loveman & O'Brien v. Bowden, 121 Tenn. 496, 119 S.W. 64, 1908 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1908).

8. Equitable Defenses.

This section does not mean that, in a case of legal character, the circuit court may assume the functions of a court of equity, because some equitable defense is set up, or a case is developed in the proof, of which a court of equity might have exercised a concurrent jurisdiction, if that forum had been selected in the first instance. In such case, the same general principle would apply since, as well as before, this statute, that the tribunal first taking diction should retain it. Sewanee Mining Co. v. E. L. Best Co., 40 Tenn. 701, 1859 Tenn. LEXIS 206 (1859); Saudek v. Nashville & H. Tpk. Co., 3 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 473 (1877); Morgan v. Layne, 165 Tenn. 513, 56 S.W.2d 161, 1932 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1933).

Where the creditor has, upon a sufficient consideration, extended the time of payment to the principal, or refused payment from him when tendered, or has done anything else which, in equity, releases the surety, the surety may make the defense in a court of law, especially under this section. Gillespie v. Darwin, 53 Tenn. 21, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 312 (1871); Lindsey v. Thompson, 60 Tenn. 463, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 535 (1873); Lindsey v. Thompson, 1 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 272 (1873); Renegar v. Thompson, 69 Tenn. 457, 1878 Tenn. LEXIS 117 (1878); Mumford v. Memphis & C.R.R., 70 Tenn. 393, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 186, 31 Am. Rep. 616 (1879); West v. Gordon, 71 Tenn. 370, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1879); Ewing v. Sugg, 80 Tenn. 375, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 183 (1883); Bryan v. Henderson, 88 Tenn. 23, 12 S.W. 338, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1889); Saunders v. Lanier, 128 Tenn. 693, 164 S.W. 780, 1915C Am. Ann. Cas. 370, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 83 (1913).

While the circuit court is without jurisdiction to relieve against mutual mistake, yet where a defendant pleads in an action at law a release as accord and satisfaction and plaintiff files replication averring that the release was executed under mutual mistake of fact, and issue is taken on the replication, without demurrer to jurisdiction, the circuit court may grant relief on equitable principles. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Humphrey, 167 Tenn. 421, 70 S.W.2d 361, 1933 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1934).

This section applies only to equitable causes or suits of an equitable nature which are brought in the circuit court by mistake and does not mean that in a case of legal character the circuit court may assume the functions of a court of equity because some equitable defense is set up. Hamilton Nat'l Bank v. Champion, 202 Tenn. 205, 303 S.W.2d 731, 1957 Tenn. LEXIS 381 (1957).

9. Discretionary Appeals in Equity Causes.

In determining when a discretionary appeal will lie from the circuit court in equity causes under § 27-3-105, such section must be construed with this section. Potter v. Sanderson, 199 Tenn. 337, 286 S.W.2d 873, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 330 (1956).

10. Appeal to Circuit Court.

Suit commenced in general sessions court and appealed to circuit court could not be disposed of on equitable grounds where amount of claim exceeded equitable jurisdiction of general sessions court. Mazikowski v. Central Mut. Ins. Co., 44 Tenn. App. 128, 312 S.W.2d 867, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 137 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

Where, in suit commenced in general sessions court and appealed to circuit court, plaintiffs were not seeking equitable relief, defendant was entitled to only such defenses as are permissible in courts of law and circuit court could not dispose of the suit as an equity case. Mazikowski v. Central Mut. Ins. Co., 44 Tenn. App. 128, 312 S.W.2d 867, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 137 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

11. Suits of Equitable Nature.

Claim against an estate involving complicated accounting was a suit of an equitable nature and there was nothing in § 30-517 (now § 30-2-314) requiring it to be tried in the form of an action at law. Hewgley v. Trice, 51 Tenn. App. 452, 369 S.W.2d 741, 1962 Tenn. App. LEXIS 121 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1962).

In a suit involving complicated accounting so as to be equitable in nature there is no absolute right to trial by jury. Hewgley v. Trice, 51 Tenn. App. 452, 369 S.W.2d 741, 1962 Tenn. App. LEXIS 121 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1962).

It is fundamental that a suit for accounting, involving claims and counterclaims, where the accounts are complicated is a suit of an equitable nature. Hewgley v. Trice, 51 Tenn. App. 452, 369 S.W.2d 741, 1962 Tenn. App. LEXIS 121 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1962).

The jurisdiction to abate a public nuisance is in chancery, circuit, and criminal courts. The statute giving jurisdiction over equitable matters to “circuit courts” refers to courts of law as distinguished from courts of equity and includes criminal courts; therefore, action for a permanent injunction restraining use of property for prostitution was properly brought in criminal court. State ex rel. Webster v. Daugherty, 530 S.W.2d 81, 1975 Tenn. App. LEXIS 172 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1975).

A suit on a note is not inherently of an equitable nature, but when equitable defenses are raised by the answer, the matter is transformed into an equitable action. Continental Bankers Life Ins. Co. v. Simmons, 561 S.W.2d 460, 1977 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1978).

Collateral References. 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity § 10.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 289, 290.

Equity 1-53.

16-10-112. Appellate jurisdiction.

The circuit court has an appellate jurisdiction of all suits and actions, of whatsoever nature, unless otherwise provided, instituted before any inferior jurisdiction, whether brought by appeal, certiorari, or in any other manner prescribed by law.

Code 1858, § 4234 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 19, § 3); Shan., § 6072; mod. Code 1932, § 10327; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-512.

Cross-References. Juvenile courts, appeal from judgment or order as to disposition of child, § 37-1-135.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 16.109.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 22; 21 Tenn. Juris., Recovery of Personal Property, § 15.

Law Reviews.

Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Personal Injury Forum (William P. Zdancewicz), 26 U. Mem. L. Rev. 1169 (1996).

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

The Tennessee Court System — Criminal Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 319.

Cited: Staples v. Brown, 113 Tenn. 639, 85 S.W. 254, 1904 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1904); Binford v. Carline, 9 Tenn. App. 364, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 246 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928); Riden v. Snider, 832 S.W.2d 341, 1991 Tenn. App. LEXIS 901 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1991).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Juvenile Court.

Under this section and § 16-10-101, one adjudged by the juvenile court of a county to be a delinquent child may obtain a review of his case by certiorari in the circuit court of that county. State v. Bockman, 139 Tenn. 422, 201 S.W. 741, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 118 (1917).

The means of procuring a review by the circuit court of a judgment of the juvenile court is by the statutory writ of certiorari and on review in the circuit court the parties are entitled to a trial by a jury, if desired, and may introduce competent evidence. Doster v. State, 195 Tenn. 535, 260 S.W.2d 279, 1953 Tenn. LEXIS 375 (1953).

Under this section, the circuit court has appellate jurisdiction of decisions of the juvenile courts. State v. Womack, 591 S.W.2d 437, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

Circuit court has jurisdiction in an action of common-law certiorari to correct a pretrial action of juvenile court. State v. Womack, 591 S.W.2d 437, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

2. Special Assessments.

The levy of a special assessment by mayor and aldermen not being a judicial act or proceeding, such levy could not be reviewed for a mere mistake in judgment. Carriger v. Morristown, 148 Tenn. 585, 256 S.W. 883, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1923).

3. Authority of Criminal Courts of County.

By virtue of this section and §§ 40-408 (repealed) and 40-426 (repealed), the criminal courts of the county have authority to grant extraordinary relief in appeals from courts of inferior jurisdiction. Franks v. State, 565 S.W.2d 36, 1977 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 271 (Tenn. Crim. App. 1977).

A possible transfer to criminal court is not sufficient grounds for negating the statutory general authority of the circuit court in favor of the specific, limited authority of the criminal court which does not arise until transfer. State v. Womack, 591 S.W.2d 437, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 344 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

3.5. County Probate Court.

County probate court was not inferior to the circuit court and, consequently, appellate jurisdiction granted the circuit court at T.C.A. § 16-10-112 did not apply in an appeal of a ruling of the probate court sustaining the State's claim against a decedent's estate, and the circuit court lacked subject matter jurisdiction to hear the appeal from the probate court. In re Estate of Ardell Hamilton Trigg, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 53 (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 9, 2011), aff'd, In re Estate of Trigg, 368 S.W.3d 483, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 379 (Tenn. May 30, 2012).

4. Paternity Actions.

In cases to establish paternity brought under the bastardy statute, the circuit court had no jurisdiction unless the defendant made a timely demand for a jury trial under former § 36-2-106 (repealed), and the exclusive method of appellate review was that provided by former § 36-2-114 (repealed) which was to the court of appeals. State ex rel. Winberry v. Brooks, 670 S.W.2d 631, 1984 Tenn. App. LEXIS 2752 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1984).

5. Bond on Appeal.

Patient's cash bond was sufficient to perfect an appeal from a general sessions court to a circuit court because the bond vested jurisdiction in the circuit court since T.C.A. § 27-5-103 expressed no limitation as to the type of bond required, so a surety bond in an unlimited amount did not solely provide the “good security” required by T.C.A. § 27-5-103(a). Griffin v. Campbell Clinic, P.A., 439 S.W.3d 899, 2014 Tenn. LEXIS 566 (Tenn. July 21, 2014).

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts § 456.

Courts 246.

16-10-113. Jurisdiction of contract enforcement.

Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, contracts for goods or services between individuals, partnerships, associations, corporations, governmental entities or limited liability companies are enforceable in either circuit or chancery court in the county where:

  1. The defendant may be found;
  2. The contract was executed;
  3. The goods were provided or were to be provided; or
  4. Services were rendered or were to be rendered.

Acts 2007, ch. 351, § 1.

Part 2
Operation

16-10-201. Duty of judge to attend court — Adjournment by clerk.

It is the duty of the circuit judge to attend and hold court at the time appointed by law; but if for any reason the circuit judge fails to appear, the clerk of the court may open and adjourn the court from time to time to some future day or days, or, if the clerk thinks the rights and interests of litigants or the business of the court require it, may so open and adjourn the court to some future day or days subsequent to the time allowed by law in which to hold such court. If no judge attends by four o'clock p.m. (4:00 p.m.) on the day to which the clerk last adjourned the court, then the court shall be adjourned by the clerk to the court in course.

Code 1858, § 4220 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 5); Acts 1901, ch. 16, § 1; 1907, ch. 592, § 1; Shan., § 6058; mod. Code 1932, § 10313; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-515; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 17.

Cross-References. Adjournment by clerk, § 18-4-104.

Terms of court abolished, § 16-2-510.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.17.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 6 Tenn. Juris., Clerks of Court, § 12.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Opening Term on Day after Legal Date — Effect.

A term of the circuit court opened on Tuesday, where Monday was the day fixed by law for its commencement, is a legal term and an indictment and conviction for a felony at such term is valid, especially where the objection was waived by plea of not guilty and trial. Henslie v. State, 50 Tenn. 202, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 84 (1871).

2. Opening and Adjournment by Clerk.

The clerk may open and adjourn court, but he should make an entry on the minutes of the court as to the same. Smith v. State, 28 Tenn. 9, 1848 Tenn. LEXIS 35 (1848); Henslie v. State, 50 Tenn. 202, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 84 (1871).

16-10-202. Days court not held.

If, from any cause, the court is not held on any day after it has been opened, there shall be no discontinuance; but, as soon as the cause is removed, the court may proceed to business as before.

Code 1858, § 4222 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 5); Shan., § 6060; Code 1932, § 10315; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-516; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 18.

Cross-References. Terms of court abolished, § 16-2-510.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.17.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Application.

Under this section, it is an everyday practice for a judge to adjourn his court, in his sound discretion, or to resume business after a failure to hold court for any cause, during a reasonable interval of time. Brewer v. State, 74 Tenn. 198, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 232 (1880); Ridout v. State, 161 Tenn. 248, 30 S.W.2d 255, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 55, 71 A.L.R. 830 (1930).

16-10-203. Duration of court.

Each of the circuit courts shall continue until the business of the court is dispatched, unless the judge is sooner compelled to leave, in order to arrive in time at the next succeeding court of the judicial district.

Code 1858, § 4218 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 4); Shan., § 6056; Code 1932, § 10310; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-517; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 19.

Cross-References. Terms of court abolished, § 16-2-510.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Dunn v. State, 127 Tenn. 267, 154 S.W. 969, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (1913).

Collateral References. 14 Am. Jur. 2d Courts § 27.

21 C.J.S. Courts § 151.

Courts 63.

16-10-204. Adjournment during trial.

In no case, after the trial of a cause is commenced, shall the judge adjourn the court until the cause is tried, except in cases where the jury cannot agree, or, from some other cause, a mistrial is ordered.

Code 1858, § 4219 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 4); Shan., § 6057; Code 1932, § 10311; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-518.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

Cited: Dunn v. State, 127 Tenn. 267, 154 S.W. 969, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (1913).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Failure to Enter Judgment — Effect.

Where court failed to enter judgment at trial term, the case could not be tried on same evidence at the next term without consent of parties. Kyle v. Goulette, 9 Tenn. App. 203, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 224 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts § 47.

21 C.J.S. Courts § 152.

16-10-205. Relief from firearm disabilities imposed on persons adjudicated as mental defective or judicially committed to mental institution.

  1. A person who is subject to 18 U.S.C. § 922(d)(4) and (g)(4) because the person has been adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution, as defined in § 16-10-213, may petition the circuit or criminal court that entered the judicial commitment or adjudication order for relief from the firearm disabilities imposed by the adjudication or judicial commitment; provided, that the person may not petition the court until three (3) years from the date of release from commitment or the date of the adjudication order, whichever is later.
  2. A copy of the petition for relief shall also be served on the district attorney general of the judicial district in which the original judicial commitment or adjudication occurred. The district attorney general may appear, support, object to, or present evidence relevant to the relief sought by the petitioner.
  3. The court shall receive and consider evidence in an open proceeding, including evidence offered by the petitioner, concerning:
    1. The circumstances that led to the imposition of the firearms disability under 18 U.S.C. § 922 (d)(4) and (g)(4);
    2. The petitioner's mental health records;
    3. The petitioner's criminal history;
    4. The petitioner's reputation; and
    5. Changes in the petitioner's condition or circumstances relevant to the relief sought.
  4. The court shall grant the petition for relief if it finds by a preponderance of the evidence and enters into the record the following:
    1. The petitioner is no longer likely to act in a manner that is dangerous to public safety; and
    2. Granting the relief would not be contrary to the public interest.
  5. A record of the proceedings shall be made by a certified court reporter or by court-approved electronic means. Except in matters resulting in criminal adjudication, the means of recording is to be provided by the petitioner.
  6. The petitioner may appeal a final order denying the requested relief, and the review on appeal, if granted, shall be de novo.
  7. A person may file a petition for relief under this section no more than once every two (2) years.
  8. Relief from a firearm disability granted under this section has no effect on the loss of civil rights, including firearm rights, for any reason other than the particular adjudication as a mental defective or judicial commitment to a mental institution from which relief is granted.
  9. When the court issues an order granting a petition of relief under subsection (d), the court clerk shall, as soon as practicable but no later than thirty (30) days after issuance, forward a copy of the order to the Tennessee bureau of investigation (TBI). The TBI, upon receipt of the order, shall:
    1. Immediately forward a copy of the order to the department of safety;
    2. Update the National Instant Criminal Background Check System database and transmit the corrected records to the federal bureau of investigation; and
    3. Remove and destroy all records relating to the petition for relief from any database over which the TBI exercises control.
  10. The TBI and the department of safety shall not use or permit the use of the records or information obtained or retained pursuant to this section for any purpose not specified in this section.

Acts 2015, ch. 459, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-10-205 (Acts 1899, ch. 40, § 1; Shan., § 6057a1; Code 1932, § 10312; Acts 1947, ch. 48, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-519), concerning extension of term, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 20. For section abolishing terms of court, see § 16-2-510.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 459, § 6. July 1, 2015.

16-10-206. Pleadings in absence of judge.

The nonattendance of a circuit court judge shall not prevent the parties from making up their pleadings in the appearance causes.

Code 1858, § 4224 (deriv. Acts 1809 (Sept.), ch. 49, § 3); Shan., § 6062; Code 1932, § 10317; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-520.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Entry of Motion for Judgment Unauthorized.

It is suggested that this section does not authorize the motion for judgment to be entered according to the notice, where there was no court sitting, but that a new notice must be given of a motion to be made at a subsequent term. Thomison v. Hugh Douglass & Co., 62 Tenn. 74, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 143 (1873).

16-10-207. Continuance in absence of judge.

None of the proceedings pending in the circuit or criminal courts shall be discontinued by the nonattendance of the judge, or the judge's death at any time, but, in such cases, all matters depending shall stand continued, if no designated judge appear to serve.

Code 1858, § 4223 (deriv. Acts 1794, ch. 1, § 8); Shan., § 6061; mod. Code 1932, § 10316; modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-521; Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 21.

Cross-References. Terms of court abolished, § 16-2-510.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 24.17.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Circuit Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 241.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Discontinuance.

The action of the court upon the question of discontinuance is necessary to terminate the suit. Cherry v. Mississippi Valley Ins. Co., 84 Tenn. 292, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 99 (1886).

2. —Acts of Court Not Working Discontinuance.

There is no discontinuance because of the void disposition of the case by a special judge appointed under an unconstitutional statute, nor by failure to enter a formal continuance in the particular cause. Johnston v. Ditty, 15 Tenn. 84, 15 Tenn. 85, 1834 Tenn. LEXIS 17 (1834); Sims v. State, 72 Tenn. 357, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1880).

A discontinuance is the result of some act done or omitted by the plaintiff, which legally withdraws his cause from the power and jurisdiction of the court, and cannot be worked by an order of the court over which the plaintiff has no control, as where the court, of its own motion, made an order transmitting the papers to another court for trial, where such order is simply void. McGuire v. Hay, 25 Tenn. 419, 1846 Tenn. LEXIS 7 (1846).

3. —Arbitration Agreement.

An agreement made out of court to arbitrate matters involved in a pending suit operates as a discontinuance of the suit. Eddings v. Gillespie, 59 Tenn. 548, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 109 (1873).

4. Time of Attendance of Judge.

This section evidently implies that the judge may attend and commence the term, by presiding in court at any of the times to which the court has been adjourned by the clerk under § 16-10-201 and before the clerk is compelled to adjourn the term to court in course. Henslie v. State, 50 Tenn. 202, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 84 (1871).

5. Time Pending Matters Continued.

If the circuit judge does not attend at the time to which the clerk has adjourned the court then, but not until then, the term is at an end, and, under this section, all pending matters stand continued until the next succeeding term. Henslie v. State, 50 Tenn. 202, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 84 (1871).

6. Death of Judge Pending Motion for New Trial.

Where the judge dies pending a motion for new trial, the motion may be heard and determined at the next term. Sims v. State, 72 Tenn. 357, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1880).

Collateral References.

Power of successor judge taking office during term time to vacate, set aside, or annul judgment entered by predecessor. 51 A.L.R.5th 747.

Power of successor or substituted judge, in civil case, to render decision or enter judgment on testimony heard by predecessor. 22 A.L.R.3d 922.

16-10-208 — 16-10-211. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former §§ 16-10-20816-10-211 (Code 1858, § 4221 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 5, § 5); 1905, ch. 113, § 2; Shan., §§ 5745a2, 6059; Code 1932, §§ 9938, 10314; Acts 1943, ch. 7, §§ 1, 2; C. Supp. 1950, §§ 9945.5, 9945.6 (Williams, § 9945.5); T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-522 — 16-525), concerning adjourned terms and process returnable to succeeding term, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 22. For provisions abolishing terms of court, see § 16-2-510.

16-10-212. Money paid into court — Power of disposition.

When money is paid into the circuit or law courts of this state to satisfy judgments rendered in the circuit or law court, or money is paid into the circuit or law courts by reason of other proceedings had in the courts, and the money belongs to or is the property of minors, life tenants, beneficiaries of the remainder interests or contingent beneficiaries of the remainder interests or persons adjudicated incompetent, the courts are vested with powers to dispose of or to enter such orders in regard to the money as courts of chancery now have. Nothing in this section shall be construed as to deprive the chancery courts of their jurisdiction in regard to such matters.

Acts 1955, ch. 140, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-526; Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 12.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 107 provided that nothing in the legislation shall be construed to alter or otherwise affect the eligibility for services or the rights or responsibilities of individuals covered by the provision on the day before the date of enactment of this legislation, which was July 1, 2011.

Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 108 provided that the provisions of the act are declared to be remedial in nature and all provisions of the act shall be liberally construed to effectuate its purposes.

Amendments. The 2011 amendment substituted “persons adjudicated incompetent” for “persons of unsound mind” in the middle of the first sentence.

Effective Dates. Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 110. July 1, 2011.

16-10-213. Information to be collected and reported to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS index and the department of safety by those circuit courts and criminal courts in which commitments to a mental institution are ordered.

  1. As used in this section:
    1. “Adjudication as a mental defective or adjudicated as a mental defective” means:
      1. A determination by a court in this state that a person, as a result of marked subnormal intelligence, mental illness, incompetency, condition or disease:
        1. Is a danger to such person or to others; or
        2. Lacks the ability to contract or manage such person's own affairs due to mental defect;
      2. A finding of insanity by a court in a criminal proceeding; or
      3. A finding that a person is incompetent to stand trial or is found not guilty by reason of insanity pursuant to §§ 50a and 72b of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, codified in 10 U.S.C. §§ 850a, 876b;
    2. “Judicial commitment to a mental institution” means a judicially ordered involuntary admission to a private or state hospital or treatment resource in proceedings conducted pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or 7;
    3. “Mental institution” means a mental health facility, mental hospital, sanitarium, psychiatric facility and any other facility that provides diagnoses by a licensed professional of mental retardation or mental illness, including, but not limited to, a psychiatric ward in a general hospital; and
    4. “Treatment resource” means any public or private facility, service or program providing treatment or rehabilitation services for mental illness or serious emotional disturbance, including, but not limited to, detoxification centers, hospitals, community mental health centers, clinics or programs, halfway houses and rehabilitation centers.
  2. Those circuit courts and criminal courts wherein commitments to a mental institution are ordered pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or 7 or persons are adjudicated as a mental defective shall enter a standing and continuing order instructing the clerk to collect and report as soon as practicable, but no later than the third business day following the date of such an order or adjudication, information described in subsection (c) regarding individuals who have been adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution for the purposes of complying with the NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007, P.L. 110-180.
  3. The following information shall be collected and reported to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS Index and the department of safety, pursuant to subsection (b):
    1. Complete name and all aliases of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective, including, but not limited to, any names that the individual may have had or currently has by reason of marriage or otherwise;
    2. Case or docket number of the judicial commitment or the adjudication as a mental defective;
    3. Date judicial commitment ordered or adjudication as a mental defective was made;
    4. Private or state hospital or treatment resource to which the individual was judicially committed;
    5. Date of birth of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective, if such information has been provided to the clerk;
    6. Race and sex of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective; and
    7. Social security number of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective if available.
  4. The information in subdivisions (c)(1)-(5), the confidentiality of which is protected by other statutes or regulations, shall be maintained as confidential and not subject to public inspection pursuant to applicable statutes or regulations, except for such use as may be necessary in the conduct of any proceedings pursuant to §§ 38-6-109, 39-17-1316, and 39-17-1352 — 39-17-1354.

Acts 2009, ch. 578, § 1; 2013, ch. 300, § 3; 2018, ch. 799, §§ 2, 5.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment substituted “collect and report as soon as practicable, but no later than the third business day following the date of such an order or adjudication” for “collect and report January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1 of every year beginning January 1, 2010” in (b).

The 2018 amendment added (c)(6) and (7); and substituted “applicable statutes” for “such statutes” and substituted “pursuant to §§ 38-6-109, 39-17-1316, and 39-17-135239-17-1354” for “pursuant to §§ 39-17-1316, 39-17-1353 and 39-17-1354” at the end of (d).

Effective Dates. Acts 2009, ch. 578, § 13. January 1, 2010.

Acts 2013, ch. 300, § 11. July 1, 2013.

Acts 2018, ch. 799, § 7. July 1, 2018.

Cross-References. Confidentiality of public records, § 10-7-504.

Attorney General Opinions. T.C.A. § 16-10-213 does not conflict with the patient privacy protections of either  T.C.A. title 33 or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) privacy provisions.  OAG 10-56, 2010 Tenn. AG LEXIS 56 (4/26/10).

Chapter 11
Chancery Courts

Part 1
Jurisdiction and Powers

16-11-101. General powers.

The chancery court has all the powers, privileges and jurisdiction properly and rightfully incident to a court of equity.

Code 1858, § 4279 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 4, § 1); Shan., § 6088; mod. Code 1932, § 10349; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-601.

Cross-References. Banking commissioner's orders, jurisdiction of chancery courts to enforce, § 45-1-108.

Personal injury or death cases in chancery or circuit courts, reports, § 16-21-111.

Probate jurisdiction transferred from county court, §§ 16-16-201, 16-16-202.

State system of personnel administration, title 8, ch. 30.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 1.

Pritchard on Wills and Administration of Estates (4th ed., Phillips and Robinson), § 832.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 21, 33, 55.

Law Reviews.

Abolishing Local Action Rules: A First Step toward Modernizing Jurisdiction and Venue in Tennessee, 34 U. Mem. L. Rev. 251 (2004).

Casenote: Estate, Gift and Trust Law-Joint and Mutual Wills-Proper Jurisdictional Vehicles for Contract-Based Mutual Wills Claims, 80 Tenn. L. Rev. 883 (2013). A Little Bit of Laches Goes a Long Way: Notes on Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc., 67 Vand. L. Rev. En Banc 1 (2014).

Domestic Relations — Inherent Annulment Jurisdiction of Equity Court, 22 Tenn. L. Rev. 1063.

Equity — 1961 Tennessee Survey (II) (T. A. Smedley), 15 Vand. L. Rev. 896.

Justiciability in Tennessee, Part Three: Timing (Barbara Kritchevsky), 16 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 177 (1986).

Laches at Law in Tennessee, 28 U. Mem. L. Rev. 211 (1997).

Quiet Title Actions in Tennessee, 15 Mem. St. U.S. Rev. 263 (1985).

The Chancery Court, 20 Tenn. L. Rev. 245.

The Supreme Court and the New Equity, 68 Vand. L. Rev. 997 (2015).

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Comparative Legislation. Chancery courts:

Ark.  Code § 16-13-301 et seq.

Miss.  Code Ann. § 9-5-1 et seq.

Va. Code § 8.01-607 et seq.

Cited: Carter v. Taylor, 409 F. Supp. 1162, 1975 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16018 (E.D. Tenn. 1975); Knobler v. Knobler, 697 S.W.2d 583, 1985 Tenn. App. LEXIS 2715 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1985); Brandon v. Wright, 838 S.W.2d 532, 1992 Tenn. App. LEXIS 365 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1992); City of Jackson v. State, — S.W.3d —, 2008 Tenn. App. LEXIS 318 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 27, 2008); Cheatham County v. Kong, — S.W.3d —, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 405 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 30, 2009).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Construction and Interpretation.

2. —Inherent and Statutory Jurisdiction.

The inherent jurisdiction of our chancery court is the jurisdiction of the high court of chancery of England, which was adopted by North Carolina as the jurisdiction of the chancery court of that state, and which was adopted in this state, upon its formation and organization, by its adoption of the laws of North Carolina, and in the creation of its chancery court; and the jurisdiction subsequently vested in such court by the legislature is called its statutory jurisdiction. J. W. Kelly & Co. v. Conner, 122 Tenn. 339, 123 S.W. 622, 1909 Tenn. LEXIS 26, 25 L.R.A. (n.s.) 201 (1909).

The vesting of jurisdiction in the county court by statute does not deprive the chancery court of its inherent jurisdiction of administration of estates. Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969), overruled in part, Browne v. Browne, 547 S.W.2d 239, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 553 (Tenn. 1977).

3. Construction with Other Acts.

Chancery jurisdiction reserved by this section is not taken away by § 30-1313 (now § 30-2-710). Murgitroyde v. Cleary, 84 Tenn. 539, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 142 (1886).

4. Jurisdiction — Examples.

The chancery court may enforce payment of debts charged on a married woman's separate estate. Jordan v. Everett, 93 Tenn. 390, 24 S.W. 1128, 1893 Tenn. LEXIS 66 (1894).

Inherent jurisdiction over the administration of estates is not taken away by the fact that a distributee or legatee may apply to the chancery court of the county of administration to compel the payment of his share or legacy. Goodman v. Palmer, 137 Tenn. 556, 195 S.W. 165, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 168 (1917).

The chancery court may compel distribution of a decedent's estate before the expiration of the year allowed therefor, in a proper case. Chester v. Turner, 153 Tenn. 451, 284 S.W. 365, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 41 (1925).

Chancery court has jurisdiction to enjoin the collection of collateral notes until proper credit has been entered upon the notes they secure; and, such jurisdiction not turning upon amount involved, limitation of jurisdiction of chancery to sums exceeding $50.00 does not apply. Kenyon v. Russell, 5 Tenn. App. 401, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 71 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

In an action in which a husband's children from a prior marriage contended that a wife's last will was invalid because it breached a contract in which the wife and the husband agreed to make mutual wills, the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction because T.C.A. § 16-16-201(a) provided the court with subject matter jurisdiction to probate wills, T.C.A. § 32-4-109 provided the court with jurisdiction to hear will contests, T.C.A. § 29-14-102 provided the court with jurisdiction to hear declaratory judgment actions, and T.C.A. §§ 16-11-101 and 16-11-102(a) provided the court with jurisdiction to hear actions for breach of oral or written contracts. In re Estate of Brown, 402 S.W.3d 193, 2013 Tenn. LEXIS 308 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2013).

Chancery court erred in exercising subject matter jurisdiction over a bail bond company's action for injunctive relief and declaratory judgment declaring proposed Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies unenforceable, unconstitutional, and in violation of the law because it did not have subject matter jurisdiction to entertain an action for declaratory or injunctive relief regarding the validity of local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

Because a bail bond company's underlying claim for injunctive relief regarding Local Rules of Practice and Procedure for Bail Bond Companies could not be brought in chancery court, the chancery court could not exercise subject matter jurisdiction over the declaratory judgment aspect of the case either; the courts should not assume that subject matter jurisdiction existed based on the fact that the issue was not addressed. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

To allow the chancery court to review the validity or enjoin the enforcement of the local rules of the criminal court would interfere with the inherent power of the criminal court to administer its affairs and impose reasonable regulations regarding the making of bonds; the statutes and rules do not authorize chancery court review of the local rules of the criminal court. Memphis Bonding Co. v. Crim. Court of Tenn. 30th Dist., 490 S.W.3d 458, 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 930 (Tenn. Ct. App. Nov. 25, 2015), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2016 Tenn. LEXIS 247 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2016).

5. —Possession of Automobile — Fraud.

Where a replevin action between plaintiff and defendant to determine the right to possession of an automobile given to each by a deceased person was instituted in the general sessions court and appealed to the circuit court whereon creditors of the deceased attempted to intervene to have the conveyances to plaintiff and defendant declared fraudulent and the auto declared part of the estate, this intervention could not be sustained since creditors were not judgment creditors nor had they proceeded by attachment. Therefore, the creditors were without interest in the replevin action; also the bill to have the conveyance declared fraudulent was bad since the circuit court had appellate jurisdiction only and could not grant the relief asked. Creditors remedy was in equity. Marlin v. Merrill, 25 Tenn. App. 328, 156 S.W.2d 814, 1941 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1941).

Collateral References. 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity §§ 4-6, 8-18, 21, 102, 104, 107, 120, 121, 134.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 289, 490.

Equity 1-53.

16-11-102. Jurisdiction of civil causes — Transfer to circuit court.

  1. The chancery court has concurrent jurisdiction, with the circuit court, of all civil causes of action, triable in the circuit court, except for unliquidated damages for injuries to person or character, and except for unliquidated damages for injuries to property not resulting from a breach of oral or written contract; and no demurrer for want of jurisdiction of the cause of action shall be sustained in the chancery court, except in the cases excepted.
  2. Any suit in the nature of the cases excepted in subsection (a) brought in the chancery court, where objection has not been taken by a plea to the jurisdiction, may be transferred to the circuit court of the county, or heard and determined by the chancery court upon the principles of a court of law.

Acts 1877, ch. 97, §§ 1, 2; 1915, ch. 47; Shan., § 6109; mod. Code 1932, § 10377; Acts 1977, ch. 294, § 1; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-602.

Cross-References. Probate jurisdiction transferred from county court, §§ 16-16-201, 16-16-202.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 4, 8, 14, 56, 105, 504, 576.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 1 Tenn. Juris., Actions, § 2; 1 Tenn. Juris., Agency, § 38; 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, §§ 212, 251; 3 Tenn. Juris., Attachment and Garnishment, § 136; 5 Tenn. Juris., Banks and Banking, § 70; 10 Tenn. Juris., Ejectment, § 12; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 2, 15, 21, 25-29, 32-36, 94, 100; 13 Tenn. Juris., Fraud and Deceit, § 36; 13 Tenn. Juris., Fraudulent and Voluntary Conveyances, § 41; 15 Tenn. Juris., Injunctions, §§ 4, 5; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23; 21 Tenn. Juris., Recovery of Personal Property, § 23.

Law Reviews.

Civil Procedure — Flowers v. Dyer County: The Death of the Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction, 23 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 409 (1993).

Laches at Law in Tennessee, 28 U. Mem. L. Rev. 211 (1997).

Cited: Shipp v. McLean, 54 S.W. 669, 1899 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 125 (1899); Davis v. Parks, 151 Tenn. 321, 270 S.W. 444, 1924 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1924); State ex rel. Thompson v. Dixie Finance Co., 152 Tenn. 306, 278 S.W. 59, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 74 (1925); Mack v. Hugger Bros. Constr. Co., 10 Tenn. App. 402, — S.W.2d —, 1929 Tenn. App. LEXIS 47 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1929); Campbell v. Lewisburg & N. R. Co., 160 Tenn. 477, 26 S.W.2d 141, 1929 Tenn. LEXIS 124 (1930); Morgan v. Layne, 165 Tenn. 513, 56 S.W.2d 161, 1932 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1933); Owens v. Owens, 21 Tenn. App. 104, 106 S.W.2d 227, 1937 Tenn. App. LEXIS 12 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1937); Bunch v. Allison, 596 S.W.2d 814, 1980 Tenn. LEXIS 436 (Tenn. 1980); Duke v. Daniels, 660 S.W.2d 793, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 624 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983); Bill Walker & Associates, Inc. v. Parrish, 770 S.W.2d 764, 1989 Tenn. App. LEXIS 111 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1989); Lee v. Hall, 790 S.W.2d 293, 1990 Tenn. App. LEXIS 168 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1990); Logan v. Winstead, 23 S.W.3d 297, 2000 Tenn. LEXIS 415 (Tenn. 2000); Joiner v. Carter, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 420 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 27, 2007); Cheatham County v. Kong, — S.W.3d —, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 405 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 30, 2009); Hayes v. State, 341 S.W.3d 293, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 681 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 8, 2009); Young v. Davis, — S.W.3d —, 2009 Tenn. App. LEXIS 728 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 30, 2009); Williams v. City of Milan, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. App. LEXIS 67 (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 16, 2011).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Constitutionality.

The statute is constitutional. Ramsey v. Temple, 71 Tenn. 252, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 70 (1879); Jackson, Morris & Co. v. Nimmo, 71 Tenn. 597, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 120 (1879).

2. Adherence to Equitable Principles Requisite.

In the exercise of the jurisdiction conferred, chancery will not grant relief contrary to the settled principles and maxims of equity jurisprudence, although a court of law would do so. Lenoir v. Mining Co., 88 Tenn. 168, 14 S.W. 378, 1889 Tenn. LEXIS 39 (1889).

Even though a legal remedy (replevin) be sought in chancery, the complainant must come with clean hands, as if equitable relief were sought. Sartain v. Dixie Coal & Iron Co., 150 Tenn. 633, 266 S.W. 313, 1924 Tenn. LEXIS 34 (1924).

3. Construction and Interpretation.

Statement that when a chancery court has taken jurisdiction for one purpose it will take jurisdiction for all purposes means all purposes “incidental to jurisdiction of main subject.” Tucker v. Simmons, 199 Tenn. 359, 287 S.W.2d 19, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 334 (1956).

If the main thing involved in the suit is not of such a nature that equity court has jurisdiction then the courts of equity will not take jurisdiction. Tucker v. Simmons, 199 Tenn. 359, 287 S.W.2d 19, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 334 (1956).

When a court of chancery takes jurisdiction of a case under its inherent jurisdiction, it may decide all issues involved in the matter in order to prevent a multiplicity of actions. Industrial Dev. Bd. v. Hancock, 901 S.W.2d 382, 1995 Tenn. App. LEXIS 92 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1995).

4. —“All Civil Causes” — Construed.

The words “all civil causes of action” mean only those civil actions which could have originated in the circuit court, the purpose of the statute being to give litigants the option of bringing suits either in the circuit or the chancery court. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

5. —Concurrent Nature of Jurisdiction.

This section does not give the chancery court exclusive, but merely concurrent, jurisdiction of actions specified. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

When developers sued a bank in circuit court, which then sued the developers in chancery court, the cases were consolidated, the developers did not appeal the dismissal of the developers'  chancery court counterclaim, and the circuit court case was dismissed, res judicata barred further litigation because (1) a dismissal of the developers'  chancery court counterclaim was an adjudication on the merits by a court of competent jurisdiction, due to the chancery court's concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit court, and (2) the suits involved the same parties and events. Rainbow Ridge Resort, LLC v. Branch Banking & Trust Co., 525 S.W.3d 252, 2016 Tenn. App. LEXIS 992 (Tenn. Ct. App. Dec. 28, 2016), appeal denied, Rainbow Ridge Resort, LLC v. Branch Banking & Trust Co., — S.W.3d —, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 301 (Tenn. May 28, 2017).

6. —Unliquidated Damages.

A court of equity has never had jurisdiction to assess unliquidated damages and the Act of 1887 which enlarged the jurisdiction of equity courts specifically exclude cases of unliquidated damages for injury to person or character and for injuries to property not resulting from a breach of contract. Ducktown Sulphur, Copper & Iron Co. v. Fain, 109 Tenn. 56, 70 S.W. 813, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 57 (1902).

Strictly, unliquidated damages are such as have not been ascertained or fixed by contract. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

Unliquidated damages proper. Nashville, C. & S. L. Ry. v. Reams, 157 Tenn. 343, 8 S.W.2d 498, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 196 (1928).

Suit maintainable in chancery for unliquidated damages for maliciously suing out an attachment, where it is brought on the bond. Nashville Union Stockyards, Inc. v. Grissim, 13 Tenn. App. 115, — S.W.2d —, 1930 Tenn. App. LEXIS 128 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1930).

Suit for personal injuries which also sought to have release alleged to have been fraudulently procured set aside was improperly brought in chancery as the main purpose of the suit was for unliquidated damages and the equitable right to have the release set aside was merely incidental and could be disposed of in a court of law. Tucker v. Simmons, 199 Tenn. 359, 287 S.W.2d 19, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 334 (1956).

Where the tort was not waived, a suit for unliquidated damages for injuries to property was not allowed in chancery court. United States Fidelity & Guaranty Ins. Co. v. Hartsook, 487 S.W.2d 649, 1972 Tenn. LEXIS 326 (Tenn. 1972).

Chancery court was able to fully adjudicate a matter because, to the extent that the damages sought were unliquidated damages above the exact amount of damages sought for an alleged misappropriation, the court, having taken jurisdiction over the liquidated portion of the damages, was able to fully adjudicate the matter. PNC Multifamily Capital Institutional Fund XXVI Ltd. P'ship v. Bluff City Cmty. Dev. Corp., 387 S.W.3d 525, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 288 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 4, 2012), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 680 (Tenn. Sept. 19, 2012).

7. —Statutory Limits.

While this statute has been liberally construed in favor of the extension of the chancery jurisdiction, the courts have declined to apply it to others which, while falling within the words of the statute, were so exceptional in character as to preclude the idea that they were within its intent. Shields v. Davis, 103 Tenn. 538, 53 S.W. 948, 1899 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1899); McCreary v. First Nat'l Bank, 109 Tenn. 128, 70 S.W. 821, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 63 (1902).

8. “Jurisdiction” defined.

“Jurisdiction” is the power constitutionally conferred upon a judge or magistrate to determine causes according to law and to carry his sentence into execution; and, since this section specifically excepts certain causes from the jurisdiction of the chancery court, a party cannot, even by express waiver or consent, confer upon that tribunal jurisdiction to hear the excepted causes. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913); Perry v. Young, 133 Tenn. 522, 182 S.W. 577, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 116, L.R.A. (n.s.) 1917B385 (1916).

9. —Courts First Acquiring Matter.

Where both chancery and circuit courts have jurisdiction, it is the rule that the court which first acquires the matter takes the exclusive jurisdiction to end the matter. Wilson v. Grantham, 739 S.W.2d 776, 1986 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3505 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1986).

10. Jurisdiction — Examples.

Jurisdiction of an unlawful detainer action is in a justice of the peace (now general sessions court), the circuit court or the chancery court, and the court which first takes jurisdiction thereby acquires exclusive jurisdiction. Robinson v. Easter, 208 Tenn. 147, 344 S.W.2d 365, 1961 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1961).

Where insurance company invokes chancery jurisdiction seeking injunctive and declaratory relief to prevent insured from enforcing arbitration provisions of policy, and insured counterclaims under the policy for damages caused by uninsured motorist, the chancery court has jurisdiction if insurer does not comply with arbitration provisions. Cavalier Ins. Corp. v. Osment, 538 S.W.2d 399, 1976 Tenn. LEXIS 491 (Tenn. 1976).

Decedent's real property, which vested in the heirs immediately upon her death, was not part of her estate subject to be sold for payment of her obligations in the absence of proof that her personal property was insufficient to discharge those obligations. The property, therefore, was not affected by statutory provisions relating to the administration of decedents' estates. Since the property passed to the heirs, it was not within the jurisdiction of the probate court. The chancellor properly exercised jurisdiction over it. Clay v. Hall, 597 S.W.2d 737, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 325 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980), appeal dismissed, 449 U.S. 914, 101 S. Ct. 310, 66 L. Ed. 2d 142, 1980 U.S. LEXIS 3562 (1980).

11. —Action for Solid Waste Disposal Fee.

The chancery court was the proper forum for an action against resident for delinquent solid waste disposal fee. City of Bolivar v. Goodrum, 49 S.W.3d 290, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 669 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000).

12. —Contract.

A suit for damages for breach of contract to cut sawlogs is entertained by chancery. Dorris v. King, 54 S.W. 683, 1899 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 131 (1899).

Breach of contract not to engage in business sold. Frumin v. Chazen, 153 Tenn. 1, 282 S.W. 199, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 1 (1926).

Breach of contract. State ex rel. Hooten v. Hooten, 1 Tenn. App. 154, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 23 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925).

Suits for specific performance lie within the inherent jurisdiction of the chancery court. Wright v. Universal Tire, Inc., 577 S.W.2d 194, 1978 Tenn. App. LEXIS 333 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1978).

County probate court had jurisdiction over suit for specific performance of a contract to sell land in light of ch. 366, Private Acts of 1974, which conferred all of the jurisdiction of the county chancery court on the probate court. Wright v. Universal Tire, Inc., 577 S.W.2d 194, 1978 Tenn. App. LEXIS 333 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1978).

In an action in which a husband's children from a prior marriage contended that a wife's last will was invalid because it breached a contract in which the wife and the husband agreed to make mutual wills, the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction because T.C.A. § 16-16-201(a) provided the court with subject matter jurisdiction to probate wills, T.C.A. § 32-4-109 provided the court with jurisdiction to hear will contests, T.C.A. § 29-14-102 provided the court with jurisdiction to hear declaratory judgment actions, and T.C.A. §§ 16-11-101 and 16-11-102(a) provided the court with jurisdiction to hear actions for breach of oral or written contracts. In re Estate of Brown, 402 S.W.3d 193, 2013 Tenn. LEXIS 308 (Tenn. Mar. 22, 2013).

Trial court had concurrent subject matter jurisdiction to consider the next of kin's claims against the funeral homes where all plaintiffs, i.e., those who signed contracts and those who did not, sought equitable relief regarding the location and identification of loved ones'  remains, and asserting concurrent jurisdiction prevented a multiplicity of actions. Wofford v. M.J. Edwards & Sons Funeral Home Inc., 528 S.W.3d 524, 2017 Tenn. App. LEXIS 214 (Tenn. Ct. App. Mar. 29, 2017), appeal denied, — S.W.3d —, 2017 Tenn. LEXIS 483 (Tenn. Aug. 18, 2017).

13. —Implied Contract.

Under this section the chancery court has jurisdiction of a suit by a receiver to recover compensation for his acts as receiver against the complainants and their sureties in the original suit in which a receiver was sought since there exists an implied contract on the part of the complainants in such original suit to compensate the receiver appointed at their solicitation. Taylor v. Smith, 172 Tenn. 247, 111 S.W.2d 1020, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 74 (1938).

14. —Warranty of Title.

Damages for breach of warranty of title. Williams v. Burg, 77 Tenn. 455, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 83 (1882); Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

15. —Note.

Where complainant filed a creditor's bill which he was not entitled to maintain, it was proper for the chancery court to render judgment on the note sued on. Sweetwater Bank & Trust Co. v. Howard, 13 Tenn. App. 592, — S.W.2d —, 1931 Tenn. App. LEXIS 101 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1931).

16. —Bond.

Damages on bond of clerk for taking insufficient supersedeas bond, whereby property levied on was lost. Glenn v. Moore, 79 Tenn. 256, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 51 (1883); State use of Henning's Heirs v. Keller, 79 Tenn. 399, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1883).

Under this section the chancery court may have jurisdiction of a suit on a bond. State ex rel. Hooten v. Hooten, 1 Tenn. App. 154, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 23 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925).

Damages on injunction bond. Dafoe v. Starek, 9 Tenn. App. 668, — S.W.2d —, 1929 Tenn. App. LEXIS 128 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1929).

17. —Ejectment.

Ejectment. Frazier v. Browning, 79 Tenn. 253, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 50 (1883).

Under this section the chancery court has concurrent jurisdiction with the circuit court in ejectment actions. Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

18. —Surveyor's Mistake.

Damages for mistake of public surveyor. State use of Henning's Heirs v. Keller, 79 Tenn. 399, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1883).

19. —Usury.

Suit against a national bank for usury may be in chancery. Bobo v. People's Nat'l Bank, 92 Tenn. 444, 21 S.W. 888, 1892 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1893), overruled, Meredith v. American Nat'l Bank, 127 Tenn. 90, 153 S.W. 479, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 12 (1912), overruled in part, Meredith v. American Nat'l Bank, 127 Tenn. 90, 153 S.W. 479, 1912 Tenn. LEXIS 12 (1912).

20. —Detinue.

In view of the enlarged jurisdiction of the chancery court by this section, such court may entertain an action in detinue. Patton v. Hardison, 20 Tenn. App. 585, 101 S.W.2d 698, 1936 Tenn. App. LEXIS 50 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1936).

21. —Election Contest.

Contested elections, if trial not provided for in some other tribunal. Morris v. Nashville, 74 Tenn. 337, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 257 (1880).

Contest of sheriff's election. Shields v. Davis, 103 Tenn. 538, 53 S.W. 948, 1899 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1899).

Mayor's election contest. Baker v. Mitchell, 105 Tenn. 610, 59 S.W. 137, 1900 Tenn. LEXIS 111 (1900).

22. —Quiet Possession.

Jurisdiction of bill to quiet the possession of land. Nason v. South Memphis Land Co., 138 Tenn. 21, 195 S.W. 761, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 2 (1917).

23. —Cloud from Title.

Jurisdiction to remove cloud from title. Bouldin v. Taylor, 152 Tenn. 97, 275 S.W. 340, 1924 Tenn. LEXIS 107 (1924).

24. —Title in Partition.

Determination of conflicting titles in partition suits. Walsh v. Crook, 91 Tenn. 388, 19 S.W. 19, 1892 Tenn. LEXIS 2 (1892).

25. —Damages as Incidental Relief.

While this statute does not confer on the chancery court jurisdiction of unliquidated damages growing out of injury or trespass to property, person, or character (except for damages for injuries to property resulting from a breach of contract), where the court has jurisdiction by injunction, or upon some recognized ground of equity, it may give damages as an incident to such jurisdiction. Horton v. Nashville, 72 Tenn. 39, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 4, 40 Am. Rep. 1 (1879); State use of Henning's Heirs v. Keller, 79 Tenn. 399, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1883).

The statute expressly excepts from the jurisdiction of chancery the cases of injury to property involving unliquidated damages; and chancery can only take jurisdiction of such matter as an incident to equitable relief granted, and not where all equitable relief is refused. Union Planters' Bank & Trust Co. v. Memphis Hotel Co., 124 Tenn. 649, 139 S.W. 715, 1911 Tenn. LEXIS 69, 39 L.R.A. (n.s.) 580 (1911); Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

A bill to enjoin a flume company from occupying the land of a riparian owner and for part damages therefor, having failed as to the injunctive relief, could not be retained for the purpose of awarding the damages. Tenn. Coal Iron & R.R. Co. v. Paint Rock Flume & Transp. Co., 128 Tenn. 277, 160 S.W. 522, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 48 (1913); Cash v. Russell, 4 Tenn. Civ. App. (4 Higgins) 601 (1914).

The chancery court has no jurisdiction of the cross action of defendants seeking unliquidated damages against cross defendants, in an original action for possession of realty and for an injunction against defendants restraining them from interfering with new construction. Greeneville Cabinet Co. v. Hauff, 197 Tenn. 321, 273 S.W.2d 9, 1954 Tenn. LEXIS 489 (1954).

Although chancery has no jurisdiction of a suit seeking no relief other than a money recovery for injuries to realty and personalty by reason of a tort, it does have jurisdiction to award such damages as an incident to injunctive relief where there is only one party complainant seeking an injunction and, incidentally, damages sustained by reason of the tort which he seeks to have enjoined. Griffith v. Hurt, 200 Tenn. 133, 291 S.W.2d 271, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 386 (1956).

26. —Negligence of Attorney.

A bill in chancery against an attorney for negligence or failure of duty in collecting claims placed in his hands for collection, whereby they were lost, may be maintained. A. T. Bruce & Co. v. Baxter, 75 Tenn. 477, 1881 Tenn. LEXIS 147 (1881).

27. —Conversion — Suit for Value.

Damages for conversion where the tort is waived and the value is sued for. Coal Creek Mining & Mfg. Co. v. Moses, 83 Tenn. 300, 1885 Tenn. LEXIS 52, 54 Am. Rep. 415 (1885).

28. —Fraud and Deceit.

Fraud and deceit. Shwab v. Walters, 147 Tenn. 638, 251 S.W. 42, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 71 (1923).

In an action between ex-spouses involving fraud in regard to paternity, because no objection to the chancery court's jurisdiction to award emotional distress damages was made, the chancery court properly considered the matter upon the principles of a court of law, T.C.A. § 16-11-102(b). Hodge v. Craig, — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 649 (Tenn. Ct. App. Oct. 13, 2010), appeal dismissed, — S.W.3d —, 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (Tenn. Jan. 18, 2011), aff'd in part, rev'd in part, 382 S.W.3d 325, 2012 Tenn. LEXIS 720 (Tenn. Oct. 1, 2012).

29. —Liens.

Furnisher's lien on a steamboat. Casey & Hedges Mfg. Co. v. Weatherly, 97 Tenn. 297, 37 S.W. 6, 1896 Tenn. LEXIS 143 (1896).

30. —Penalty Against Bank.

Penalty against national bank. McCreary v. First Nat'l Bank, 109 Tenn. 128, 70 S.W. 821, 1902 Tenn. LEXIS 63 (1902).

31. —Proceeds of Estate.

Recovery of proceeds of an estate converted. Carpenter v. Wright, 158 Tenn. 289, 13 S.W.2d 51, 1928 Tenn. LEXIS 152 (1929).

32. —Forfeitures.

Forfeitures under antitrust law. State ex rel. Astor v. Schlitz Brewing Co., 104 Tenn. 715, 59 S.W. 1033, 1900 Tenn. LEXIS 48, 78 Am. St. Rep. 941 (1900).

33. —Money Lost Gaming.

Money lost at gaming or on wagering contracts. McGrew v. City Produce Exchange, 85 Tenn. 572, 4 S.W. 38, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 84, 4 Am. St. Rep. 771 (1887); Dunn v. Bell, 85 Tenn. 581, 4 S.W. 41, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 85 (1887); Simmons v. Leonard, 89 Tenn. 622, 15 S.W. 444, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 86 (1891).

34. —Mandamus.

Hawkins v. Kercheval, 78 Tenn. 535, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 220 (1882); Simmons v. Leonard, 89 Tenn. 622, 15 S.W. 444, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 86 (1891).

35. —Recoupment.

Recoupment may include damages suffered from any matter arising from plaintiff's demand for which defendant would be entitled to recover in cross action and may be claimed in chancery. Mack v. Hugger Bros. Const. Co., 153 Tenn. 260, 283 S.W. 448, 1925 Tenn. LEXIS 27, 46 A.L.R. 389 (1926).

36. Lack of Jurisdiction — Examples.

Chancery court had no jurisdiction to enjoin unlawful detainer suit commenced before justice of the peace (now general sessions court) where only basis of suit in equity was complainant's claim of oral lease for one year and alleged lease, if valid, would have amounted to legal defense to the unlawful detainer action. Robinson v. Easter, 208 Tenn. 147, 344 S.W.2d 365, 1961 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1961).

37. —Tort of Fraud.

Allegations construed to make a cross bill one for misrepresentations made to one defendant by the agent of another defendant, making it one for the tort of fraud and deceit, of which the chancery court has no jurisdiction, so that the cross bill must be dismissed. Ellett v. Embury & Maury, 142 Tenn. 444, 217 S.W. 818, 1919 Tenn. LEXIS 71 (1919).

38. —Tort of Malice.

Suit for damages for maliciously inducing party to break contract. Varno v. Tindall, 164 Tenn. 642, 51 S.W.2d 502, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 63 (1932).

39. —Negligence.

Injury to ferry and land. Rhea v. Hooper, 73 Tenn. 390, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1880).

Injury to eggs by negligence of warehouseman. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

40. —Trespass to Person and Property.

Chancery has no jurisdiction of an action of damages for trespass to person or property. Horton v. Nashville, 72 Tenn. 39, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 4, 40 Am. Rep. 1 (1879); State use of Henning's Heirs v. Keller, 79 Tenn. 399, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 78 (1883).

41. —Condemnation of Land.

Condemnation of land for sale under justice's (now general sessions judge's) execution. Shields v. Davis, 103 Tenn. 538, 53 S.W. 948, 1899 Tenn. LEXIS 134 (1899).

Chancery court had no jurisdiction to enjoin taking of sewer and water lines by municipality without just compensation or to entertain suit for unjust enrichment since adequate remedy is provided at law under reverse condemnation procedure in § 29-16-123. Zirkle v. Kingston, 217 Tenn. 210, 396 S.W.2d 356, 1965 Tenn. LEXIS 535 (1965).

42. —Loss of Profits.

Loss of profits on sales. Sanford-Day Iron Works v. Enterprise Foundry & Machine Co., 138 Tenn. 437, 198 S.W. 258, 1917 Tenn. LEXIS 53 (1917).

43. —Restraining Interference.

Restraining interference with right to exercise duties as public officer. State ex rel. Brumit v. Grindstaff, 144 Tenn. 554, 234 S.W. 510, 1921 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1921).

44. —Devisavit Vel Non.

Trial of issue of devisavit vel non. Simmons v. Leonard, 89 Tenn. 622, 15 S.W. 444, 1890 Tenn. LEXIS 86 (1891).

Although this section provides that the chancery court can hear and determine certain cases in which jurisdiction lies in the circuit court where no objection to the jurisdiction has been taken by a plea, where the issue of jurisdiction was raised in the lower court it was improper for the chancellor to rule on the issue of devisavit vel non. Muse v. Sluder, 600 S.W.2d 237, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 347 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

45. —Transfer to Circuit Court.

Implicit in the provisions of T.C.A. § 16-11-102 is the positive inference that where a complaint has been filed in the chancery court that lies outside that court's subject matter jurisdiction, and objection has been made, the chancery court may not dismiss the complaint but must transfer it to the appropriate circuit court. Woods v. MTC Mgmt., 967 S.W.2d 800, 1998 Tenn. LEXIS 213 (Tenn. 1998).

T.C.A. § 16-11-102 does not authorize a chancery court to transfer an improper appeal made from a general sessions judgment to a circuit court with the proper jurisdiction. Graves v. Kraft Gen. Foods, 45 S.W.3d 584, 2000 Tenn. App. LEXIS 692 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2000).

46. Jury Trial.

The parties are entitled to demand a jury in chancery where the case is cognizable under this section. Shepard & Gluck v. Thomas, 147 Tenn. 338, 246 S.W. 836, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 46 (1922).

In nonequitable cases tried before a chancery court, a party may demand, of right, a jury to try issues of fact, and the jury's verdict has the effect of a verdict at law. Hurt v. Earnhart, 539 S.W.2d 133, 1976 Tenn. App. LEXIS 248 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1976).

47. Jurisdiction — Objections.

The filing of an answer by the defendant is not a waiver of objections to the jurisdiction of chancery, where the action is one falling within the exceptions of this section. Swift & Co. v. Memphis Cold Storage Warehouse Co., 128 Tenn. 82, 158 S.W. 480, 1913 Tenn. LEXIS 27 (1913).

Implicit in the provisions of Tenn.Code Ann. § 16-11-102 is the positive inference that, where a jurisdictional objection has been made, a transfer pursuant to subsection (b) is mandated. Flowers v. Dyer County, 830 S.W.2d 51, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 491 (Tenn. 1992), rehearing denied, — S.W.2d —, 1992 Tenn. LEXIS 368 (Tenn. May 4, 1992).

Although briefing was submitted to the appellate court regarding whether a case involved unliquidated damages and therefore should properly have been in circuit court as opposed to the chancery court, the appellate court made no further inquiry into the matter. Because there was no evidence of an objection taken by a plea to jurisdiction in the trial court, there was no basis to conclude then that the chancery court was not permitted to hear the lawsuit. Hawthorne v. Morgan & Morgan Nashville PLLC, — S.W.3d —, 2020 Tenn. App. LEXIS 576 (Tenn. Ct. App. Dec. 17, 2020).

48. Federal Courts — Jurisdiction.

This section does not efface the distinction between legal and equitable rights and remedies; and, if it did, it could not confer upon the federal courts jurisdiction in equity to try common law cases. United States v. Wilson, 118 U.S. 86, 6 S. Ct. 991, 30 L. Ed. 110, 1886 U.S. LEXIS 1906 (1886); American Asso. v. Williams, 166 F. 17, 1908 U.S. App. LEXIS 4831 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1908).

49. Parties.

50. —Joinder.

Two or more persons may unite in a bill to enjoin a nuisance although their lands are separate and distinct from each other where it appears that the lands of all are affected in substantially the same way by the nuisance complained of. Griffith v. Hurt, 200 Tenn. 133, 291 S.W.2d 271, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 386 (1956).

There could be no joinder of parties as complainants for recovery of separate injuries inflicted by the same tort upon separate lands under bill seeking such damages and mandatory injunction for abatement of the condition causing such damages. Griffith v. Hurt, 200 Tenn. 133, 291 S.W.2d 271, 1956 Tenn. LEXIS 386 (1956).

51. Estoppel of Challenge to Jurisdiction.

Having invoked the jurisdiction of the chancery court, plaintiff was estopped to seek to reverse its decision on the ground of lack of jurisdiction. Clay v. Hall, 597 S.W.2d 737, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 325 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980), appeal dismissed, 449 U.S. 914, 101 S. Ct. 310, 66 L. Ed. 2d 142, 1980 U.S. LEXIS 3562 (1980).

Collateral References. 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity §§ 10, 11.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 289, 490.

Res judicata as affected by limitation of jurisdiction of court which rendered judgment. 83 A.L.R.2d 977.

Courts 472.1, 472.3.

Equity 44.

16-11-103. Jurisdiction of equity causes.

The chancery court has exclusive original jurisdiction of all cases of an equitable nature, where the debt or demand exceeds fifty dollars ($50.00), unless otherwise provided by this code. It has no jurisdiction of any debt or demand of less value than fifty dollars ($50.00), unless otherwise specifically provided.

Code 1858, §§ 4280, 4281 (deriv. Acts 1801, ch. 6, § 1; 1835-1836, ch. 4, § 1); Shan., §§ 6089, 6090; mod. Code 1932, §§ 10350, 10351; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-603.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 5, 8.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 2, 21, 26, 33; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

The Supreme Court and the New Equity, 68 Vand. L. Rev. 997 (2015).

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Cited: Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923); L.L. Bean, Inc. v. Bracey, 817 S.W.2d 292, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 346 (Tenn. 1991).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Construction and Interpretation.

Under § 16-10-111 circuit court has jurisdiction of suits of an equitable nature in absence of demurrer to jurisdiction. Hewgley v. Trice, 207 Tenn. 466, 340 S.W.2d 918, 1960 Tenn. LEXIS 482 (1960).

2. —“Original Jurisdiction” — Meaning.

This section is construed as having reference to those equitable rights which result from fraud, accident, mistake, trusts, and the like, originally inherent in a court of equity, and not as denying such equitable remedies as are exclusively conferred upon the chancery court by the Code. Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923).

Term “original jurisdiction” refers to class of cases where the right of action itself is equitable, and not to those cases where equitable remedy is involved. Covert v. Nashville, C. & S. L. Ry., 186 Tenn. 142, 208 S.W.2d 1008, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 529, 1 A.L.R.2d 154 (1948).

3. —Ancillary Jurisdiction.

The jurisdiction of a chancery court is limited by the amount only in those cases of an equitable nature where the chancery court has exclusive original jurisdiction, and there was no intention to limit the jurisdiction of the chancery court by the amount in those cases where the court had exclusive ancillary jurisdiction in the enforcement of a claim or a demand. Covert v. Nashville, C. & S. L. Ry., 186 Tenn. 142, 208 S.W.2d 1008, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 529, 1 A.L.R.2d 154 (1948).

4. Fifty Dollar Minimum.

Where evidence was to the effect that the value of complainant's name in business was more than $50.00, complainant was not barred by this section from bringing suit to enjoin use of his name in shoe business. McDonald v. Julian, 48 Tenn. App. 427, 348 S.W.2d 749, 1961 Tenn. App. LEXIS 84 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1961).

5. —Exclusive Ancillary Jurisdiction.

The restriction and limitation of jurisdiction of chancery to sums exceeding $50.00 applies only when the jurisdiction turns wholly upon the amount involved. If the jurisdiction to grant the relief sought is exclusively conferred upon the chancery court, the limitation as to amount does not apply, there being no other remedy. Malone v. Dean, 77 Tenn. 336, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 59 (1882); Washburn v. Moore, 3 Tenn. Civ. App. (3 Higgins) 268 (1912).

Where old board reelected defendant as recorder and new board elected petitioner the chancery court could not enjoin defendant from interfering with petitioner in exercising duties connected with his office pending determination of right to office. State ex rel. Brumit v. Grindstaff, 144 Tenn. 554, 234 S.W. 510, 1921 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1921).

Plaintiff elected as superintendent was entitled to issuance of an injunction by chancery court against interference in duties of office from defendant where issue of election contest was not involved. Hart v. Pierce, 169 Tenn. 411, 88 S.W.2d 798, 1935 Tenn. LEXIS 64 (1935).

The $50.00 requirement for jurisdiction refers only to those cases in which chancery has exclusive original jurisdiction and does not apply to those cases where chancery has exclusive ancillary jurisdiction in enforcement of demand. Covert v. Nashville, C. & S. L. Ry., 186 Tenn. 142, 208 S.W.2d 1008, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 529, 1 A.L.R.2d 154 (1948).

The chancery court is limited by the amount of $50.00 only in those cases of an equitable nature where the chancery court has an exclusive original jurisdiction under this section, but is not limited to such amount in other cases of auxiliary or ancillary jurisdiction conferred by other statutes without regard to amount. Tritschler v. Cartwright, 46 Tenn. App. 662, 333 S.W.2d 6, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 120 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

6. —Amount Demanded.

The chancery court has no jurisdiction where the whole demand, without deduction by reason of setoff or payment, is under $50.00. McNew v. Toby, 25 Tenn. 27, 1845 Tenn. LEXIS 7 (1845).

The amount sued for in chancery determines the jurisdiction, and not the amount found to be due on the hearing. Spurlock v. Fulks, 31 Tenn. 289, 1851 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1851); Brimingham v. Tapscott, 51 Tenn. 382, 1871 Tenn. LEXIS 178 (1871); Wagstaff v. Braden, 60 Tenn. 304, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 495 (1872); Malone v. Dean, 77 Tenn. 336, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 59 (1882).

A bill to foreclose a mortgage which instrument recited that it secured a note for $45.00 and expense, including an attorney's fee of $10.00, involved a sum about $50.00. McAffrey v. Richards, 59 S.W. 1064, 1900 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 128 (1900).

In an action to recover for the breach of covenants in a deed, where the sum involved was less than $50.00 and it was insisted that an equity court could not take jurisdiction, held, that if the suit had been only for $50.00 the court could not take jurisdiction but since the bill also sought other relief for which complainant had no remedy at law, the equity court had jurisdiction. Kenyon v. Russell, 5 Tenn. App. 401, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 71 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

Chancery court did not have jurisdiction of suit of railroad passengers against railroad to determine legal rights of passengers who had paid railroad excess amount for their intrastate tickets as evidenced by receipts issued by railroad for excess payment where individual amount involved as to each plaintiff was less than $50.00 though total amount of excess payments collected was in excess of $250,000 since separate rights were involved. Covert v. Nashville, C. & S. L. Ry., 186 Tenn. 142, 208 S.W.2d 1008, 1948 Tenn. LEXIS 529, 1 A.L.R.2d 154 (1948).

7. —Rule Inapplicable — Examples.

The rule as to limit of amount is not applicable in an ejectment case. Frazier v. Browning, 79 Tenn. 253, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 50 (1883); Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923).

A mandamus case is not subject to the rule as to the limit of amount. State ex rel. Hurt v. Alexander, 115 Tenn. 156, 90 S.W. 20, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 52 (1905).

Chancery has jurisdiction to set aside a fraudulent conveyance where the demand is under $50.00. Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923).

8. —Rule Applicable — Examples.

Chancery is without jurisdiction to enforce an equitable vendor's lien where the demand is under the amount of $50.00. Malone v. Dean, 77 Tenn. 336, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 59 (1882).

The chancery court has no jurisdiction in ordinary cases where the amount involved is less than $50.00. Frazier v. Browning, 79 Tenn. 253, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 50 (1883).

Suit in chancery court to enjoin distress warrant for delinquent taxes and to annul the assessment as being void when such taxes plus penalty, interest and cost amounted to less than $50.00 was without the jurisdiction of the chancery court. Tritschler v. Cartwright, 46 Tenn. App. 662, 333 S.W.2d 6, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 120 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

9. Plea in Abatement.

Where the bill shows more than $50.00 to be due, and the defendant desires to raise the question that the court has no jurisdiction, because the amount in fact due is less than $50.00, he must do so by a plea in abatement, averring the amount in controversy to be less than $50.00, otherwise the question as to the jurisdiction is waived. Martin v. Carter, 9 Tenn. 489, 1831 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1831); Covington v. Neilson, 14 Tenn. 474, 14 Tenn. 475, 1834 Tenn. LEXIS 117 (1834); Frazier v. Browning, 79 Tenn. 253, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 50 (1883).

10. Waiver of Jurisdiction by Answer.

If, on the face of the bill, the debt or demand be less than $50.00, it should be dismissed; if more than $50.00, the court, prima facie, has jurisdiction; and, if the defendant submits by answering, he cannot resist a decree because the amount found to be due to complainant is less than $50.00. Spurlock v. Fulks, 31 Tenn. 289, 1851 Tenn. LEXIS 67 (1851); Wagstaff v. Braden, 60 Tenn. 304, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 495 (1872); Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923).

11. Suits of Equitable Nature.

Suit for reformation of contract of insurance was of an equitable nature and could not be maintained as an action at law where objection was raised to jurisdiction of circuit court. Milwaukee Ins. Co. v. Gordon, 54 Tenn. App. 279, 390 S.W.2d 680, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 153 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

12. Determination of Tax Liability.

With respect to judicial determinations that have the effect, directly or indirectly, of determining liability for taxes that are collected by the department of revenue, Tenn. Code Ann. § 67-1-1804 overrides the jurisdiction that a chancery court would otherwise have under this section. L.L. Bean, Inc. v. Bracey, 817 S.W.2d 292, 1991 Tenn. LEXIS 346 (Tenn. 1991).

Collateral References. 20 Am. Jur. 2d Courts §§ 88, 154-157, 159, 163-165, 167, 169, 170; 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity §§ 13, 14.

21 C.J.S. Courts § 490.

Equity 33.

16-11-104. Proceedings in aid of execution.

The chancery court has exclusive jurisdiction to aid a creditor, by judgment or decree, to subject the property of the defendant that cannot be reached by execution to the satisfaction of the judgment or decree under this code.

Code 1858, § 4282; Shan., § 6091; Code 1932, § 10352; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-604.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 7, 332, 456.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 3 Tenn. Juris., Attachment and Garnishment, §§ 25-116, 148; 8 Tenn. Juris., Covenants, § 3; 10 Tenn. Juris., Dower, § 7; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 26, 33; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 74; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

Enforcement of judgments in Tennessee, 22 Tenn. L. Rev. 873.

Cited: Tritschler v. Cartwright, 46 Tenn. App. 662, 333 S.W.2d 6, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 120 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959); United Nat'l Real Estate v. Thompson, 941 S.W.2d 58, 1996 Tenn. App. LEXIS 634 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1996).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Construction with Other Acts.

This section and §§ 26-4-101, 26-4-102 should be read in connection with § 21-105 (repealed). Edwards v. Hawks, 189 Tenn. 17, 222 S.W.2d 28, 1949 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1949).

2. —Divorce Jurisdiction — Circuit Court.

Exclusive jurisdiction of chancery court in enforcing judgments against property subject to execution did not deprive circuit court of exclusive jurisdiction of proceeding by wife to enforce award of alimony and child support provisions of decree entered by circuit court in divorce proceeding, since § 36-822 (now § 36-5-103) provides that court which grants divorce decree may employ for the enforcement of the decree “such other lawful means as are usual and according to the course and practice of the court,” as divorce suit is to all intents and purposes a chancery proceeding. Kizer v. Bellar, 192 Tenn. 540, 241 S.W.2d 561, 1951 Tenn. LEXIS 301 (1951) (decision under prior law).

3. Construction and Interpretation.

4. —“Under the Provisions of This Code” — Meaning.

Exercise of jurisdiction under this section is restricted by this concluding phrase, and is not to be exercised in every case that may arise. North v. Puckett, 164 Tenn. 100, 46 S.W.2d 73, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 18, 81 A.L.R. 1107 (1932).

5. —Property Covered.

This section is broad and comprehensive, and seems to embrace all kinds of property that is not exempt with the one exception of money in the possession of the defendant. North v. Puckett, 164 Tenn. 100, 46 S.W.2d 73, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 18, 81 A.L.R. 1107 (1932); Robertson v. Johnson, 27 Tenn. App. 59, 177 S.W.2d 860, 1943 Tenn. App. LEXIS 129 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1943).

6. Basis of Jurisdiction.

7. —Other Equitable Remedy.

That a judgment creditor might be able to obtain an equitable attachment of the debtor's property does not exclude such creditor from proceeding under this section without the necessity of attachment. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

8. —Execution Returned Nulla Bona.

Defense that no execution has been issued and returned nulla bona is to the jurisdiction, and must be made by motion to dismiss, demurrer, or by plea in abatement, but it is unnecessary that it should be made to appear that execution has been issued and returned nulla bona if it is shown by other proof that the judgment debtor is actually insolvent and has no property subject to execution. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

9. —Remedy at Law.

The jurisdiction rests upon the ground that the complainant has no remedy at law, and cannot reach his debtor's property by execution at law; and the statute aids him upon that ground alone. Putnam v. Bentley, 67 Tenn. 84, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 334 (1874); Malone v. Dean, 77 Tenn. 336, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 59 (1882); Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923); Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

Chancery cannot be resorted to when the assets sought to be reached are leviable at law, unless to remove an obstacle to legal enforcement, when there is no lien, fraud, trust, or equitable interest in the same. Bryan v. Zarecor, 112 Tenn. 503, 81 S.W. 1252, 1903 Tenn. LEXIS 118 (1904).

Where defendant in an action at law is fraudulently disposing of his property, plaintiff may maintain a creditor's bill in aid of his lawsuit. Sweetwater Bank & Trust Co. v. Howard, 13 Tenn. App. 592, — S.W.2d —, 1931 Tenn. App. LEXIS 101 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1931).

10. Jurisdiction — Examples.

11. —Debtor's Equitable Interest.

A judgment creditor, whose debtor has no property on which execution is leviable, may, by bill in chancery, subject the equitable interest of his debtor in land, by sale, to the satisfaction of his judgment. Cloud v. Hamilton & Sitler, 11 Tenn. 80, 11 Tenn. 81, 1832 Tenn. LEXIS 22 (1832); Gray v. Faris, 15 Tenn. 154, 15 Tenn. 155, 1834 Tenn. LEXIS 31 (1834); McNairy v. Eastland, 18 Tenn. 310 (1837).

Judgment creditor had a right to subject equity of debtor to the payment of her claim even though a like petition had already been filed by another creditor to reach the same equity and had been sustained by the court, the proof showing that the land was worth substantially more than all the liens against it prior to the filing of the petition by the judgment creditor. Robertson v. Johnson, 27 Tenn. App. 59, 177 S.W.2d 860, 1943 Tenn. App. LEXIS 129 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1943).

12. —Judgment under Fifty Dollars.

The chancery court may aid a judgment creditor whose judgment is less than $50.00 to reach the property of his debtor which is not subject to execution at law, where the debtor has no property subject to execution at law. Putnam v. Bentley, 67 Tenn. 84, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 334 (1874); State v. Covington, 72 Tenn. 51, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 5 (1879); Malone v. Dean, 77 Tenn. 336, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 59 (1882).

13. —Administrator's Bill.

Suit by administrator of estate which was judgment creditor to subject fund in chancery court belonging to debtor to satisfaction of judgment was authorized. Rutherford v. Parker, 29 Tenn. App. 179, 195 S.W.2d 328, 1946 Tenn. App. LEXIS 65 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1946).

14. —Creditor of Estate.

Under this section chancellor could properly decree that judgment creditor was entitled to whatever interest that would pass to a judgment debtor under the terms of a will then in the process of administration. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

Where complainant filed bill in chancery to subject property passing to a judgment debtor under the terms of a will and where chancellor decreed that complainant was entitled to the debtor's interest in the estate and enjoined the executors of the will from delivering or paying over any property or money to the creditor such decree and injunction did not invade the jurisdiction of the county court with reference to administration of the estate since all that was required of the executors was to hold the debtor's proceeds of the estate subject to the orders of the chancery court and there was nothing in the decree to prevent such executors from making settlement of the estate. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

15. —Unassigned Dower.

While not subject to execution, unassigned dower may be subjected under this statute. North v. Puckett, 164 Tenn. 100, 46 S.W.2d 73, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 18, 81 A.L.R. 1107 (1932).

16. —Funds in Custodia Legis.

Funds in the hands of the clerk and master of the court, subject to orders of distribution, are in custodia legis, and are not subject to execution or attachment at law or to garnishment in aid of a creditor of a party entitled to a portion in the fund. Scott County Nat'l Bank v. Robinson, 143 Tenn. 356, 226 S.W. 218, 1920 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1920).

Under the inherent jurisdiction of the chancery court, as well as by virtue of this statute, a creditor can bring a bill in equity to subject to the payment of his judgment his debtor's interest in a fund which has been paid into court. Scott County Nat'l Bank v. Robinson, 143 Tenn. 356, 226 S.W. 218, 1920 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1920).

17. —Fraudulent Conveyances.

A lien attaches to property fraudulently conveyed upon the filing of a bill to set it aside, but such lien does not have complete vitality and become operative as to strangers to the suit until process has been served upon a material defendant. Bank of Delrose v. Mansfield, 4 Tenn. App. 488, — S.W. —, 1926 Tenn. App. LEXIS 199 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1926).

18. —Equity in Real Estate.

Upon nulla bona return, chancery has jurisdiction to subject an equity in realty held in trust for the debtor. Fulghum v. Cotton, 74 Tenn. 590, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 300 (1880); Schoolfield v. Cogdell, 120 Tenn. 618, 113 S.W. 375, 1908 Tenn. LEXIS 48 (1908).

A judgment creditor, after a nulla bona return of an execution, may reach the equity of his debtor in real estate, by a bill in chancery against such debtor and the other persons holding a trust on such property. Harris v. Beasley, 123 Tenn. 605, 133 S.W. 1110, 1910 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1911), superseded by statute as stated in, Figlio v. Shelley Ford, Inc., — S.W.2d —, 1988 Tenn. App. LEXIS 425 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 22, 1988).

19. —Trustee of Bankrupt — Assignment of Homestead.

Trustee of bankrupt to whom homestead had never been assigned was entitled to file a bill in chancery for an assignment of homestead rather than by filing bill for discovery of assets, if a bill to compel discovery of homestead was not necessary. Edwards v. Hawks, 189 Tenn. 17, 222 S.W.2d 28, 1949 Tenn. LEXIS 396 (1949).

20. Several Creditors — Same Equity.

Under this section a creditor has the right to subject the equity of a debtor in property to the payment of the creditor's claim and this is true even where another creditor of the debtor has filed a similar petition to reach the same equity and such petition has already been sustained. Robertson v. Johnson, 27 Tenn. App. 59, 177 S.W.2d 860, 1943 Tenn. App. LEXIS 129 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1943).

21. Defense — Sworn Answer of Executor.

Bill in chancery to subject interest of judgment debtor in estate to such judgment was not in the nature of a garnishment so as to bind complainant by the sworn answers of executors that the estate was not indebted to the creditor. Hull v. Vaughn, 171 Tenn. 642, 107 S.W.2d 219, 1937 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1937).

22. Foreign Judgment Creditors.

The statute does not apply to creditors by judgment in other states with return of nulla bona there. No lien lis pendens is created by filing bill. Broughton v. Slusher, 2 Tenn. Ch. App. 305 (1902).

23. Installment Payments.

When enforcing a money judgment, trial courts have the power to issue an installment payment order only upon motion of the judgment debtor or by agreement. Kuykendall v. Wheeler, 890 S.W.2d 785, 1994 Tenn. LEXIS 353 (Tenn. 1994).

Collateral References. Equity 438.

16-11-105. Suits by state against corporations.

The court has power to hear and determine all controversies between the state and corporations, their stockholders or creditors, upon a bill filed by the attorney general and reporter on behalf of the state.

Code 1858, § 4296 (deriv. Acts 1839-1840, ch. 1, § 4); Shan., § 6105; mod. Code 1932, § 10366; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-605.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 7, 506.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 34, 35; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Cited: State ex rel. Collier v. Enloe, 121 Tenn. 347, 117 S.W. 223, 1908 Tenn. LEXIS 24 (1909).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Jurisdiction.

In suit to abate public nuisance and to revoke corporate charter, fact that criminal court had narrow statutory concurrent jurisdiction with chancery court with reference to abatement of public nuisances did not permit criminal court to retain jurisdiction of suit for purpose of revocation of corporate charter under maxim that equity having taken jurisdiction for one purpose will retain jurisdiction for all purposes. Pan-O-Ram Club, Inc. v. State, 217 Tenn. 137, 395 S.W.2d 803, 1965 Tenn. LEXIS 526 (1965).

16-11-106. Boundary disputes.

  1. The chancery court has jurisdiction to hear and determine all cases in which the boundary line or lines of adjoining or contiguous tracts of land is one, or the only, question at issue in the case.
  2. In all such cases a complete deraignment of title by the complainant from a state grant or common source of title shall not be required as in ejectment cases, but it shall be sufficient to establish title in the complainant where the complainant proves clearly that the complainant is the true owner of the lands described in the complainant's bill.

Acts 1915, ch. 122, §§ 1, 2; Shan., §§ 6106 a1, 6106 a2; mod. Code 1932, §§ 10368, 10369; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-606, 16-607.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), §§ 7, 121.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 251; 5 Tenn. Juris., Boundaries, §§ 2-22; 10 Tenn. Juris., Ejectment, § 28; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 35; 11 Tenn. Juris., Evidence, § 45; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

An Exegesis of the Ejectment Statutes of Tennessee (R.D. Cox), 18 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 581 (1988).

Cited: McGregor v. Lehman, 14 Tenn. App. 300, — S.W.2d —, 1931 Tenn. App. LEXIS 40 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1931); Ray v. Crain, 18 Tenn. App. 603, 80 S.W.2d 113, 1934 Tenn. App. LEXIS 61 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1934); Stearns Coal & Lumber Co. v. Kitchen Lumber Co., 27 Tenn. App. 468, 182 S.W.2d 4, 1944 Tenn. App. LEXIS 93 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1944); Gibson v. Shular, 29 Tenn. App. 166, 194 S.W.2d 865, 1946 Tenn. App. LEXIS 63 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1946); Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958); Arrowood v. Williams, 586 S.W.2d 131, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 331 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979); Hodges v. Huntington, 595 S.W.2d 824, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 383 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979); Bynum v. Hollowell, 656 S.W.2d 400, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 602 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Statute Inapplicable.

2. —Enjoining Trespass.

This statute is inapplicable to a suit to enjoin a defendant from cutting timber and to recover for the value of the timber already cut and removed, involving an issue as to the title to a strip of land between adjoining owners, depending on the location of the boundary line. Union Tanning Co. v. Lowe, 148 Tenn. 407, 255 S.W. 712, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1923).

3. —Determination by Pleadings.

Purpose of a suit to establish or locate boundary lines of contiguous or adjoining tracts of land can be determined only from the pleadings. Union Tanning Co. v. Lowe, 148 Tenn. 407, 255 S.W. 712, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1923).

Where a boundary line dispute was the gravamen of the complaint, an action was a boundary line dispute, not an ejectment action, since, even though defendant's answer alleged title to part of the land by adverse possession, it did not contain a counterclaim. Burks v. Boles, 934 S.W.2d 653, 1996 Tenn. App. LEXIS 371 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1996).

4. Jurisdiction.

The determinations of oil and gas unit participation and disputed property boundaries was within the jurisdiction of the chancery court under this section and the jurisdiction of the oil and gas board under § 60-1-202, and the chancellor was not required, under the doctrine of primary jurisdictions, to defer to agency expertise. Freels v. Northrup, 678 S.W.2d 55, 1984 Tenn. LEXIS 944 (Tenn. 1984) (chancellor did not defer to agency).

5. Bifurcated Cases.

It was proper for circuit court judge, acting sua sponte, to order that case be bifurcated, and that there be a trial in the chancery court as to boundary line dispute while retaining tort claims in the circuit court. Burnette v. Pickel, 858 S.W.2d 319, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 15 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993), appeal denied, 1993 Tenn. LEXIS 265 (Tenn. July 6, 1993).

6. Evidence.

Where suit was to determine boundaries, and was not in the nature of ejectment, plaintiff could establish his boundary upon the deeds of all parties to the action, and was not limited to recovery upon the strength of his own title alone. Cusick v. Cutshaw, 34 Tenn. App. 283, 237 S.W.2d 563, 1948 Tenn. App. LEXIS 134 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1948).

It was not necessary for complainants to prove ownership of land in question at time of filing suit where it was shown that they formerly owned the land and had conveyed by a warranty deed and that it was for the protection against liability under such warranty that they brought suit. Patterson v. T. J. Moss Tie Co., 46 Tenn. App. 405, 330 S.W.2d 344, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

In a boundary dispute complainant must prove that he is the true owner or that he has become entitled to possession of the disputed area of land by clear proof. Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

Mere fact that defendant specifically asserted in his answer that the cause could be maintained as a suit in ejectment only but filed no cross bill could not deprive the complainants of the right expressly granted by statute to prove their case without a complete deraignment of title. Patterson v. T. J. Moss Tie Co., 46 Tenn. App. 405, 330 S.W.2d 344, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

Complainants are entitled to establish a boundary line by reference to title papers of other parties as well as their own. Patterson v. T. J. Moss Tie Co., 46 Tenn. App. 405, 330 S.W.2d 344, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

Where a deed contains an adequate particular description of the property conveyed, it will not be controlled by a recital therein of the quantity or number of acres unless it clearly appears that it was the intention to convey only a definite quantity. Williams v. Daniel, 545 S.W.2d 120, 1976 Tenn. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1976).

Where a sale of property is in gross and not by the acre and there is opportunity to examine the land and where there is no showing of fraud, the deed will stand as written, despite a mutual mistake as to the number of acres contained in the tract conveyed. Williams v. Daniel, 545 S.W.2d 120, 1976 Tenn. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1976).

A suit concerning a boundary line dispute was not a suit for ejectment and it was not necessary that plaintiff prove a complete deraignment of title from a state grant or a common source but was only required to prove clearly that he was the true owner of the land described in the complaint. Arrowood v. Williams, 586 S.W.2d 131, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 331 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

To prove clearly that the parties in a boundary dispute are the true owners, simply means that the complainant must prove that he is the true owner or that he had become entitled to the possession of land adjacent to the boundary which he undertakes to have established. Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

In determining disputed boundaries, resort is to be had first to natural objects or landmarks, because of their very permanent character; next, to artificial monument or marks, then to the boundary lines of adjacent landowners, and then to courses and distances. This rule of construction is to aid in determining the intention of the parties to a deed which is to be determined, if possible, from the instrument in connection with the surrounding circumstances. Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

The reason why a monument or adjacent line is ordinarily given preference over courses and distances is that the parties so presumed to have examined the property have, in viewing the premises, taken note of the monument or line. Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

Where a plat showed a straight boundary line between two agreed points but an old fence line along the boundary had a slight bow in it, the artificial markers in the old fence line controlled over the straight line protracted on the subdivision plat, particularly where the evidence in the record establishes the bow in the old fence line could not be detected on a visual inspection of the premises and could only be ascertained through sophisticated surveying equipment which, was not available to surveyor at the time of preparation of the plat. Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

The complainant is not required to prove a complete deraignment of title from the state nor to prove a common source of title but is required to prove clearly that he is the true owner of the property described in the complaint. Franks v. Burks, 688 S.W.2d 435, 1984 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3365 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1984).

7. —Burden of Proof.

The burden of the plaintiff in a boundary line dispute is somewhat less than that borne by the plaintiff in an ejectment action, but, he must, nevertheless, establish title in the complainant and he must prove clearly that he is the true owner of the lands described in his bill. Nelson v. Walls Properties, Inc., 611 S.W.2d 409, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 400 (Tenn. 1981).

Subsection (b) simply means that the complainant must prove that he is the true owner or that he had become entitled to the possession of land adjacent to the boundary which he undertakes to have established, that is, the disputed area of land, by clear proof, and the chancellor would be confined to a determination by the clear proof, if he rested his decision upon title, to decree title only to the particular disputed area. Blankenship v. Blankenship, 658 S.W.2d 125, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 611 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

8. —Defective Deeds.

Plaintiff established title to property and correct boundary where defendant's deed descriptions were deemed defective and defendant did not establish adverse possession. Blankenship v. Blankenship, 658 S.W.2d 125, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 611 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

9. Damages — “Mild” Rule.

Where in a boundary dispute there was a real question as to the location of the boundary and no question of any willful trespass the damages were properly determined according to the “mild” rule. Stearns Coal & Lumber Co. v. Kitchen Lumber Co., 27 Tenn. App. 468, 182 S.W.2d 4, 1944 Tenn. App. LEXIS 93 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1944).

10. Ejectment.

Where suit was actually one in ejectment although defendant led trial court into believing that it was a boundary line dispute and trial court erroneously treated cause as boundary line dispute, cause would be remanded to be proceeded to a conclusion as an ejectment suit and to afford complainant an opportunity to deraign title from a common source or grant from the state. Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

11. —Additional Remedy.

Decree dismissing suit to enjoin defendants from cutting timber on land in which the defendant denied complainant's title to the land, on the ground that complainant did not deraign title, should not preclude complainant from suing in ejectment for the land, and the bill should be dismissed without prejudice. Union Tanning Co. v. Lowe, 148 Tenn. 407, 255 S.W. 712, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1923).

12. —Adverse Possession — Proof.

Where a boundary dispute begun under this section developed into an ejectment action and the defendant failed to establish an actual, open, notorious, exclusive and hostile possession for the required statutory time, he could not get title by adverse possession. Stearns Coal & Lumber Co. v. Kitchen Lumber Co., 27 Tenn. App. 468, 182 S.W.2d 4, 1944 Tenn. App. LEXIS 93 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1944).

Where boundary dispute begun under this section develops into an ejectment action and defendant fails to establish an actual open, notorious, exclusive and hostile possession for the required statutory time he cannot get title by adverse possession. Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

Proof of record title and that plaintiff rode his horses and gave others permission to ride their horses on disputed parcel was sufficient to establish title in plaintiff and overcome claim of adverse possession. Blankenship v. Blankenship, 658 S.W.2d 125, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 611 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

13. Oral Agreement.

Disputed boundary lines may be established by oral agreement as such agreements do not fall within the prohibition of the statute of frauds, and the parties will thereafter be estopped to question the line thus established even though it may afterwards be demonstrated that such line was erroneous. Webb v. Harris, 44 Tenn. App. 492, 315 S.W.2d 274, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 100 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

14. Decree.

In a boundary dispute the decree of the chancellor is confined to the disputed area. Carr v. Wilbanks, 45 Tenn. App. 372, 324 S.W.2d 786, 1958 Tenn. App. LEXIS 131 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1958).

15. Inaccuracies in Surveys.

Where surveys show inaccuracies in the metes and bounds in descriptions of large bodies of land, courses and distances yield to calls for natural objects and lines of adjacent owners. Patterson v. T. J. Moss Tie Co., 46 Tenn. App. 405, 330 S.W.2d 344, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

16. Limitations of Actions.

The seven-year limitation statute, § 28-2-102, applies in a boundary line dispute, even though the title was not derived from a state grant or a common source of title. Williams v. Daniel, 545 S.W.2d 120, 1976 Tenn. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1976).

17. Parties.

Where suit was brought by former owners who disposed of property by warranty deed for the purpose of avoiding possible future liability under covenant of warranty such right was independent of any rights the grantee may have had and it was not required that the grantee be made a party. Patterson v. T. J. Moss Tie Co., 46 Tenn. App. 405, 330 S.W.2d 344, 1959 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1959).

One without title to real property has no justifiable interest in its boundaries. Nelson v. Walls Properties, Inc., 611 S.W.2d 409, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 400 (Tenn. 1981).

18. Presumptions.

The object in all boundary questions is to find, as nearly as may be, certain evidences of what particular land was meant to be included for conveyance, and the natural presumption is that the conveyance is made after and with reference to an actual view of the premises by the parties to the instrument. Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980).

19. Collateral Estoppel.

When a plaintiff had previously failed to prove his title to certain lands in an ejectment proceeding, he was collaterally estopped from bringing an action on the boundary lines of that same property. Nelson v. Walls Properties, Inc., 611 S.W.2d 409, 1981 Tenn. LEXIS 400 (Tenn. 1981).

20. Joint Possession.

Title in plaintiff was established where plaintiff showed he had record title and defendant failed to prove adverse possession because earlier parol agreement could not be used to establish color of title and because joint possession by the legal title holder and another is deemed to be possession of the holder of the legal title. Blankenship v. Blankenship, 658 S.W.2d 125, 1983 Tenn. App. LEXIS 611 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1983).

Collateral References. 11 C.J.S. Boundaries, §§ 99, 103; C.J.S. Courts § 490.

16-11-107. Suits on foreign judgments.

When a judgment has been recovered in any other state against a resident of such state, and the creditor has exhausted the creditor's legal remedy, the real or personal property of the debtor in this state may be subjected to the satisfaction of such debt, by bill stating the facts under oath, and filed in the court of the county in which the property is situated.

Code 1858, § 4297 (deriv. Acts 1801, ch. 6, § 2); Shan., § 6106; Code 1932, § 10367; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-608.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 3 Tenn. Juris., Attachment and Garnishment, §§ 4, 76, 114; 14 Tenn. Juris., Guardian and Ward, § 4; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 102; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23; 18 Tenn. Juris., Liens, § 7.

Law Reviews.

Enforcement of Judgments in Tennessee, 22 Tenn. L. Rev. 873.

Cited: Thornburg v. Chase, 606 S.W.2d 672, 1980 Tenn. App. LEXIS 384 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1980); Barone v. Barone, — S.W.3d —, 2012 Tenn. App. LEXIS 218 (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 3, 2012).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Jurisdiction.

2. —Exhaustion of Legal Remedies.

The exhaustion of the legal remedy against a judgment debtor in another state is shown by the fact that the property of such debtor in the state of his residence has been placed at the suit of creditors, in the possession of a receiver under a statute forbidding interference with it. Commercial Nat'l Bank v. Matherwell Iron & Steel Co., 95 Tenn. 172, 31 S.W. 1002, 1895 Tenn. LEXIS 75, 29 L.R.A. 164 (1895).

In action to enforce foreign judgment against nonresident by bill against property in this state, and averment that complainant had attempted to collect his claim, and had not succeeded, was not a sufficient showing that complainant had exhausted his legal remedies so as to warrant attachment under the statute. Brown v. Pace, 49 S.W. 355, 1898 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 123 (1898).

3. —Exhaustion of Foreign Remedies.

If foreign debtor has no property in state of his residence but does have property in Tennessee, equity is authorized to act in rem by virtue of Acts 1801, ch. 6, § 2 whereas prior to 1801 equity could only act in personam. Davis's Ex'rs v. Fulton, 1 Tenn. 121, 1805 Tenn. LEXIS 13 (1805).

The supreme court has repeatedly applied this section in cases where suits were brought in chancery by nonresidents, who had exhausted their remedy in the foreign state, to subject specific property in this state, of a nonresident debtor, recognizing that this was the purpose of the statute. The statute confers on the chancery court jurisdiction to give relief under these conditions “and under no other.” Phillips v. Johns-Manville Sales Corp., 183 Tenn. 266, 191 S.W.2d 554, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 210 (1946).

4. —Judgment — Necessity.

Nonresident creditor without a judgment may under appropriate circumstances maintain a bill against a nonresident debtor in Tennessee under the general principles of equity jurisprudence. Hall v. Jordan, 190 Tenn. 1, 227 S.W.2d 35, 1950 Tenn. LEXIS 411 (1950), superseded by statute as stated in, Toler by Lack v. City of Cookeville, 952 S.W.2d 831, 1997 Tenn. App. LEXIS 89 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1997).

5. —Debtor Becoming Resident of State — Statute Inapplicable.

This section was intended to give a remedy only against judgment debtors who were nonresidents at the time of the filing of the bill to subject property here; and where a judgment was rendered against the defendant when a nonresident of this state, and he afterwards removed to this state, this statute was not applicable when he became a resident here. Broughton v. Slusher, 2 Tenn. Ch. App. 305 (1902).

6. Jurisdiction — Examples.

7. —Creditor and Debtor Nonresidents.

Where the debtor and creditor are nonresidents of this state and both residents of the same state, and the judgment creditor has exhausted his legal remedy in the state of their common residence, our chancery courts have jurisdiction, independent of the attachment laws, to aid such creditor to subject his debtor's “real or personal property” situate in this state to the payment of his debts. This rule is not affected by § 29-6-109. Taylor v. Badoux, 92 Tenn. 249, 21 S.W. 522, 1892 Tenn. LEXIS 69 (1893); Commercial Nat'l Bank v. Matherwell Iron & Steel Co., 95 Tenn. 172, 31 S.W. 1002, 1895 Tenn. LEXIS 75, 29 L.R.A. 164 (1895).

8. —Judgment Confessed by Foreign Corporation.

A judgment confessed by a debtor corporation of another state, in favor of its creditor of that state, after a petition has been filed for its enforced dissolution, though, in such state, there is a statute making a judgment confessed by a corporation, after such a petition has been filed, void as against its receiver and creditors, is valid, and gives the creditor in whose favor so confessed a remedy, under this section, to the same extent and in the same manner, and with the same priority, as a citizen of Tennessee, notwithstanding such statute, which is not effective to defeat an attachment of property in this state for the satisfaction of such judgment. Commercial Nat'l Bank v. Matherwell Iron & Steel Co., 95 Tenn. 172, 31 S.W. 1002, 1895 Tenn. LEXIS 75, 29 L.R.A. 164 (1895); Hardee v. Wilson, 129 Tenn. 511, 167 S.W. 475, 1914 Tenn. LEXIS 141 (1914).

9. —Equitable Appropriation of Funds in State.

Where a nonresident loaned money to another nonresident, on the borrower's promise to repay the loan out of funds then in, or to come into, the hands of persons of Tennessee, for the borrower, such promise amounted to an equitable appropriation of an appropriate portion of such funds, which equity could enforce in this state. Allison v. Pearce, 59 S.W. 192, 1900 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 77 (1900).

10. —Foreign Receivers — Right to Sue in State.

Where his suit is not inimical to the interest of local creditors, or of anyone who has acquired rights under a local statute, nor in contravention of the policy of the forum, an ordinary chancery receiver appointed by the court of another state is accorded the privilege of bringing a suit in this state, as a matter of comity. Hardee v. Wilson, 129 Tenn. 511, 167 S.W. 475, 1914 Tenn. LEXIS 141 (1914).

11. —Justice's Judgment.

Judgment of a justice of the peace in another state is effective under this section, so as to entitle the judgment creditor to take advantage of its provisions where he has exhausted his legal remedy on such judgment in such other state. J. S. Menken Co. v. Brinkley, 94 Tenn. 721, 31 S.W. 92, 1895 Tenn. LEXIS 58 (1895).

12. Personam Suits — Circuit Court.

This section does not bar suit in circuit court by foreign corporation against Florida resident on a judgment secured in Florida, since suit is in personam and not in rem. Phillips v. Johns-Manville Sales Corp., 183 Tenn. 266, 191 S.W.2d 554, 1946 Tenn. LEXIS 210 (1946).

13. Priority of Liens.

Where creditor filed suit on its foreign judgment and amount of foreign judgment was deposited with Tennessee court prior to federal government's filing of tax lien against debtor, creditor had valid lien on money deposited with priority over government's lien. S & S Gasket Co. v. United States, 635 F.2d 568, 1980 U.S. App. LEXIS 11515 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1980).

Collateral References. 50 C.J.S. Judgments § 877.

Judgment 933.

16-11-108. Persons adjudicated incompetent.

The chancery court has jurisdiction, concurrent with the county court, over persons adjudicated incompetent and their estates.

Code 1858, § 4298 (deriv. Acts 1851-1852, ch. 163, § 1); Shan., § 6107; Code 1932, § 10375; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-609; Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 13.

Compiler's Notes. Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 107 provided that nothing in the legislation shall be construed to alter or otherwise affect the eligibility for services or the rights or responsibilities of individuals covered by the provision on the day before the date of enactment of this legislation, which was July 1, 2011.

Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 108 provided that the provisions of the act are declared to be remedial in nature and all provisions of the act shall be liberally construed to effectuate its purposes.

Amendments. The 2011 amendment substituted “persons adjudicated incompetent and their estates” for “the persons and estates of idiots, lunatics, and other persons of unsound mind” at the end.

Effective Dates. Acts 2011, ch. 47, § 110. July 1, 2011.

Cross-References. Personal service on incompetents, Tenn. R. Civ. P. 4.04(2).

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 62.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 30; 14 Tenn. Juris., Guardian and Ward, § 4; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Cited: Tinsley v. Bryan, 148 Tenn. 256, 255 S.W. 49, 1922 Tenn. LEXIS 88 (1923); Brewer v. Griggs, 10 Tenn. App. 378, — S.W.2d —, 1929 Tenn. App. LEXIS 46 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1929).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Process Service.

Persons of unsound mind must be served with process and appear by guardian or guardian ad litem. Quinn v. Quinn, 169 Tenn. 173, 83 S.W.2d 269, 1935 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (1935).

2. Insurance Policies — Reformation.

Insurance policies, like other written instruments, may be reformed in equity in cases of mutual mistake. Dickens v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 170 Tenn. 403, 95 S.W.2d 910, 1935 Tenn. LEXIS 146 (1936).

3. Conservatorship Proceeding.

In a conservatorship proceeding where the brother-in-law sought to be appointed conservator over the elderly widow, the record contained clear and convincing evidence that the brother-in-law was a party, along with the deceased, to a conveyance to the brother-in-law undertaken for the sole purpose of enabling the deceased and the widow to qualify for governmental assistance under TennCare to which they would not otherwise have been entitled; therefore, because of the fraudulent character of the conveyance and the brother-in-laws' role in it, the brother-in-law was not entitled to gain personally from the transfer of funds by being permitted to retain the money, and the trial court did not err by setting aside the transaction and ordering the brother-in-law to return the unspent remainder of the certificate of deposit. In re Conservatorship Groves, 109 S.W.3d 317, 2003 Tenn. App. LEXIS 112 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2003).

Collateral References. 56 C.J.S. Mental Health §§ 55 et seq., 165 et seq.

16-11-109. Infants and guardians.

The chancery court has jurisdiction, concurrent with the county court, of the persons and estates of infants, and of the appointment and removal of guardians.

Code 1858, § 4299; Shan., § 6108; Code 1932, § 10376; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-610.

Cross-References. Concurrent jurisdiction with county and juvenile courts, §§ 34-2-101, 37-1-104.

Guardianship, title 34.

Personal service on infants, Tenn. R. Civ. P. 4.04(2).

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 30; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23; 18 Tenn. Juris., Minors, § 23.

Law Reviews.

A Study of Domestic Relations, Juvenile and Family Courts in Tennessee, 10 Vand. L. Rev. 592.

Cited: Kansas City, Ft. S. & M. R. Co. v. Morgan, 76 F. 429, 1896 U.S. App. LEXIS 2142 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1896); Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969); Cockrell v. Woods, 528 S.W.2d 206, 1975 Tenn. LEXIS 624 (Tenn. 1975); Wilson v. Grantham, 739 S.W.2d 776, 1986 Tenn. App. LEXIS 3505 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1986).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Venue.

It was proper to challenge, by plea in abatement, venue of action to remove testamentary guardian, which was brought in chancery court of county where testator died, in which his will was probated and letters of guardianship taken out, where the appointment was made while guardian and ward lived in another county, in which they continued to live at time of the suit. State ex rel. Logan v. Graper, 155 Tenn. 565, 4 S.W.2d 955, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 80 (1927).

2. Consent Decree.

A consent decree affecting the rights of an infant entered by his solicitor or by a duly authorized agent is voidable, and subject to be set aside if found to be prejudicial to his rights. Ledford v. Johnson City Foundry & Machine Co., 169 Tenn. 430, 88 S.W.2d 804, 1935 Tenn. LEXIS 66 (1935).

3. Construction with Other Sections.

This section, to the extent that it is in conflict with any of the provisions of Acts 1951, ch. 202 (§§ 36-101 — 36-137) see now title 36, chapter 1, part 1 or Acts 1955, ch. 177 (§§ 37-242 — 37-259) (now §§ 37-1-101, 37-1-14337-1-159) has been repealed. St. Peter's Orphan Asylum Asso. v. Riley, 43 Tenn. App. 683, 311 S.W.2d 336, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 144 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957).

4. Abandoned Children.

The chancery or circuit court has no jurisdiction to declare a child an “abandoned child” except in connection with a petition for adoption under the provisions of §§ 36-110 (now § 36-1-110), 37-243 (now § 37-1-144). St. Peter's Orphan Asylum Asso. v. Riley, 43 Tenn. App. 683, 311 S.W.2d 336, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 144 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957).

5. Custody of Minors.

Although the chancery court has inherent jurisdiction of the persons and estates of minors, the state has conferred upon juvenile courts the special exclusive jurisdiction to determine custody of a dependent or delinquent minor. State ex rel. Baker v. Turner, 562 S.W.2d 435, 1977 Tenn. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1977).

Collateral References. 30 C.J.S. Equity § 51; 39 C.J.S. Guardian and Ward §§ 11, 45-47; 43 C.J.S. Infants §§ 6, 124.

Infants 33.

16-11-110. Divorce proceedings — Adoptions.

The chancery court has jurisdiction, concurrent with the circuit court, of all proceedings for divorce and for the adoption of children.

Code 1858, § 4301 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 20, § 1); Shan., § 6111; Code 1932, § 10379; Acts 1951, ch. 202, § 2 (Williams, § 9572.16); modified; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-612.

Cross-References. Adoption, title 36, ch. 1.

Custody, title 36, ch. 6.

Divorce and annulment, title 36, ch. 4.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 8.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 9 Tenn. Juris., Divorce and Alimony, §§ 2, 18; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

A Study of Domestic Relations, Juvenile and Family Courts in Tennessee, 10 Vand. L. Rev. 592.

Courts, Legislatures, and Second-Parent Adoptions: On Judicial Deference, Specious Reasoning, and the Best Interests of the Child, 66 Tenn. L. Rev. 019 (1999).

Cited: Rains v. Rains, 58 Tenn. App. 214, 428 S.W.2d 650, 1968 Tenn. App. LEXIS 295 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1968); Sizemore v. Sizemore, — S.W.3d —, 2007 Tenn. App. LEXIS 486 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 30, 2007); In re Angela E., 303 S.W.3d 240, 2010 Tenn. LEXIS 87 (Tenn. Feb. 16, 2010).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Custody of Minors.

Although the chancery court has inherent jurisdiction of the persons and estates of minors, the state has conferred upon juvenile courts the special exclusive jurisdiction to determine custody of a dependent or delinquent minor. State ex rel. Baker v. Turner, 562 S.W.2d 435, 1977 Tenn. App. LEXIS 258 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1977).

3. Jurisdiction.

Trial court had subject matter jurisdiction over a wife's contempt petition where the petition sought to secure the husband's compliance with the marriage dissolution agreement that had been made an order of the court, and Tennessee courts were empowered to inflict punishments for contempt of court. Foster v. Foster, — S.W.3d —, 2019 Tenn. App. LEXIS 214 (Tenn. Ct. App. May 2, 2019).

Collateral References. 30A C.J.S. Equity §§ 5, 74.

Validity and construction of statutory provision relating to jurisdiction of court for purpose of divorce for servicemen. 73 A.L.R.3d 431.

16-11-111. Partition or sale of property.

The chancery court has jurisdiction, concurrent with the circuit and county courts, of proceedings for the partition or sale of estates by personal representatives, guardians, heirs, or tenants in common, and for the sale of land at the instance of creditors of the decedent, if the personal property is insufficient to satisfy the debts of the estate.

Code 1858, § 4302 (deriv. Acts 1787, ch. 17; 1835-1836, ch. 20, § 1); Shan., § 6112; mod. Code 1932, § 10380; Acts 1976, ch. 529, § 4; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-613.

Cross-References.  Distribution, partition, and sale of realty, § 16-16-108.

Partition and sale of property, § 16-10-109.

Partition, remedies and special proceedings, title 29, ch. 27.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 2 Tenn. Juris., Appeal and Error, § 124; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 28, 30; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23; 20 Tenn. Juris., Partition, § 8.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Cited: Bashaw v. Temple, 115 Tenn. 596, 91 S.W. 202, 1905 Tenn. LEXIS 93 (1906); Puckett v. Wynns, 132 Tenn. 513, 178 S.W. 1184, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 41 (1915); Summers v. Conger, 43 Tenn. App. 286, 307 S.W.2d 936, 1957 Tenn. App. LEXIS 116 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1957); Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Construction with Other Acts.

A court of equity under this section has jurisdiction to set aside homestead and dower although this section and §§ 16-10-109, 16-16-107 and 30-902 (now § 30-2-202) do not, in express terms, include jurisdiction to set aside homestead. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

2. Sale of Decedent's Lands in Another State.

A court of equity has no jurisdiction to compel a decedent's heirs to convey his lands in another state to a special commissioner for the sale thereof in order to pay decedent's debts, although the estate be insolvent. Creditors must seek relief in the courts of the state where such lands are located. Robinson v. Johnson, 52 S.W. 704, 1899 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 28 (1899).

The Tennessee chancery court did not have jurisdiction to divest the title out of the third party and vest it in another since the real estate was located in another state and the court has no power to act upon foreign land. Estate of Trivette v. Trivette, 564 S.W.2d 672, 1977 Tenn. App. LEXIS 271 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1977).

Decisions Under Prior Law

1. Dower.

Chancery has jurisdiction to allot dower, and, as incident thereto, to compel the production of title papers, and the discovery of any matters necessary to a proper ascertainment of the condition of the landed estate of the deceased husband in the possession of the heirs. Clift v. Clift, 87 Tenn. 17, 9 S.W. 198, 1888 Tenn. LEXIS 29 (1888).

The primary duty of determining whether dower may be set aside and, if so, fixing the boundaries thereof, rests with the commissioners and secondarily, with the court in event exceptions are filed by any interested party. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

The court should not attempt to determine questions relating to the allotment of homestead and dower until commissioners have been appointed and have reported their findings. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

2. Homestead.

Statutes giving chancery court jurisdiction concurrent with county court do not in express terms include jurisdiction to set aside homestead, but same may be said for section defining jurisdiction of county courts however, both courts have jurisdiction from ancient times and practice has been both in county and chancery court to appoint commissioners to set aside homestead. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

3. Commissioner's Findings.

Court should not as a matter of practice attempt to determine questions relating to the allotment of homestead and dower until commissioners have been appointed and have reported their findings. Wyrick v. Hale, 30 Tenn. App. 597, 209 S.W.2d 50, 1947 Tenn. App. LEXIS 113 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1947).

Collateral References. 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity § 63.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 490, 492.

Contractual provisions as affecting right to judicial partition. 37 A.L.R.3d 962.

Partition 39.

16-11-112. Arbitration and agreed cases.

The chancery court has jurisdiction, concurrent with all other judicial tribunals, of arbitration and agreed cases under this code.

Code 1858, § 4303 (deriv. Acts 1851-1852, ch. 173, § 1); Shan., § 6113; Code 1932, § 10381; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-614.

Cross-References. Arbitration, remedies and special proceedings, title 29, ch. 5.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 28; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction, § 23.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Collateral References. 6 C.J.S. Arbitration §§ 11, 145-148, 159-160; 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 11, 490.

16-11-113. Appointment of administrator.

The chancery court may appoint an administrator of a decedent's estate six (6) months after the decedent's death, where no person can be procured to administer in the usual way, as provided in title 30, chapter 3.

Code 1858, § 4304 (deriv. Acts 1841-1842, ch. 177, § 1); Shan., § 6114; Code 1932, § 10382; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-615.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 30, 35; 12 Tenn. Juris., Executors and Administrators, § 6; 17 Tenn. Juris., Jurisdiction § 23.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — Chancery Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 281.

Cited: Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Allegations in Bill — Sufficiency.

Bill for appointment of administrator in chancery was sufficient though not specifically alleging the residence of deceased and her debtors, where it could be inferred from the charges in the bill that such residences were in the county in which the bill was filed. Hall v. Calvert, 46 S.W. 1120 (Tenn. Ch. App. 1897).

2. Concurrent Jurisdiction.

Generally both the county and chancery courts are vested with jurisdiction in the appointment and removal of personal representatives and administration of decedents' estates. Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969), overruled in part, Browne v. Browne, 547 S.W.2d 239, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 553 (Tenn. 1977).

3. Serious Disputes or Complications.

Although as a general rule both the county court and chancery court are vested with jurisdiction in the administration of decedents' estates, in instances of serious dispute or complication the chancery courts may assume jurisdiction of the administration of an estate although the county court has previously undertaken such administration. Dick v. Dick, 223 Tenn. 228, 443 S.W.2d 472, 1969 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1969), overruled in part, Browne v. Browne, 547 S.W.2d 239, 1977 Tenn. LEXIS 553 (Tenn. 1977).

Collateral References. 27 Am. Jur. 2d Equity §§ 5, 63.

21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 289, 490; 33, 34 C.J.S. Executors and Administrators §§ 72, 76, 725.

Ex and Ad 13.

16-11-114. Venue of suits.

The local jurisdiction of the chancery court is subject to the following rules:

  1. All bills filed in any court seeking to divest or clear the title to land, or to enforce the specific execution of contracts relating to realty, or to foreclose a mortgage or deed of trust by a sale of personal property or realty, shall be filed in the county in which the land, or a material part of it, lies, or in which the deed or mortgage is registered;
  2. Bills seeking to enjoin proceedings at law may be filed in the county in which the suit is pending, or to which execution has issued;
  3. Bills against nonresidents, or persons whose names or residences are unknown, may be filed in the county in which the cause of action arose, or the act on which the suit is predicated was to be performed, or in which is the subject of the suit, or any material part thereof; and
  4. When attachment of property is allowed in lieu of personal service of process, the bill may be filed in the county in which the property, or any material part of the property sought to be attached, is found at the commencement of the suit.

Code 1858, § 4311 (deriv. Acts 1787, ch. 22, § 1; 1801, ch. 6, § 2; 1825, ch. 22, §§ 1, 2; 1827, ch. 42, § 1; 1833, ch. 52); Acts 1877, ch. 107, § 1; Shan., § 6121; Code 1932, § 10388; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-617; Acts 1994, ch. 560, § 1.

Textbooks. Gibson's Suits in Chancery (7th ed., Inman), § 121.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 3 Tenn. Juris., Attachment and Garnishment, §§ 76, 86; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 27, 47; 15 Tenn. Juris., Injunctions, § 25; 16 Tenn. Juris., Judgments and Decrees, § 11; 24 Tenn. Juris., Vendor and Purchaser, § 66; 24 Tenn. Juris., Venue, § 4.

Law Reviews.

Real Property (Herman L. Trautman), 6 Vand. L. Rev. 1080.

Cited: Gregory v. Merchants State Bank, 23 Tenn. App. 567, 135 S.W.2d 465, 1939 Tenn. App. LEXIS 63 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1939); Terrell v. Terrell, 192 Tenn. 317, 241 S.W.2d 411, 1951 Tenn. LEXIS 407 (1951); Martin v. Martin, 755 S.W.2d 793, 1988 Tenn. App. LEXIS 18 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988); Phillips v. State Bd. of Regents, 771 S.W.2d 410, 1989 Tenn. LEXIS 191 (Tenn. 1989); Woods v. Fields, 798 S.W.2d 239, 1990 Tenn. App. LEXIS 216 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1990); Hawkins v. Tenn. Dep't of Corr., 127 S.W.3d 749, 2002 Tenn. App. LEXIS 536 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2002); Haggard v. Aguilar, — S.W.3d —, 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 760 (Tenn. Ct. App. Dec. 7, 2010).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. County Where Property Found.

2. —Assets of Estate.

Administrator appointed by county court was not entitled to file a proceeding in chancery court located in same county to recover assets of estate from defendant living in another county where it was not alleged that chattels or goods were located in county of suit. Harris v. Harris, 190 Tenn. 506, 230 S.W.2d 982, 1950 Tenn. LEXIS 513 (1950).

3. —Winding Up Foreign Corporations.

Chancery jurisdiction over property of a foreign corporation for winding up the same and distributing its assets here. Hadley v. Freedman's Sav. & Trust Co., 2 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 122 (1874); Smith v. St. Louis Mut. Life Ins. Co., 3 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 502 (1877).

4. County Where Defendant Resides.

5. —Distributee Suing Administrator Wherever Found.

Any chancery court, within territorial limits of which the defendant is served with process, has jurisdiction of a bill filed by distributee of an estate against the administrator thereof, for a settlement of the administration and the recovery of the complainant's distributive share, although the bill shows that the estate, the administration, and the administrator are in another county, and no final settlement had been made, but all the other distributees had been settled with and paid. Parkes v. Parkes, 3 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 647 (1878).

6. —Deed Reformation.

Where in a suit to reform a deed the court had jurisdiction of the subject matter and three of the defendants named in such suit resided in the county where the suit was brought and the other nonresident defendants were served by publication the decree of the court allowing such reformation was immune from collateral attack. Globe & Republic Ins. Co. v. Shields, 170 Tenn. 485, 96 S.W.2d 947, 1936 Tenn. LEXIS 20 (1936).

7. —Winding up Trusteeship under Deed of Trust.

The chancery court of this state has jurisdiction, at the suit of the maker of a deed of trust, who is a resident of another state, where the land conveyed was situated and the beneficiaries and trustees resided, to have a judgment, recovered in this state on a note embraced in the deed of trust, collected and appropriated to the payment of claims of the beneficiaries, and the surplus thereof paid to the complainant, and to have a settlement of accounts with the trustees, all other matters in the trust having been disposed of, and the bill being filed in the county in which the judgment debtor resided, or was when the bill was filed and he was served with process. Wilcox v. Morrison, 77 Tenn. 699, 1882 Tenn. LEXIS 126 (1882).

8. County Where Land Located.

9. —Land Partly in More than One County.

The statutes contemplate a single tract of land lying partly in two or more counties, in which case jurisdiction of a court in either county is undoubted. French v. Buffatt, 161 Tenn. 500, 33 S.W.2d 92, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 35 (1930).

Where plaintiff owned a tract of land located in both Hamilton and Marion Counties, and defendant owned a smaller tract located in Marion County but whose description was contained in metes and bounds set forth in plaintiff's tract, a suit filed by plaintiff in Hamilton County chancery court for the purpose of preventing cutting of timber and a decree declaring deed to defendants to be champertous was properly dismissed for lack of jurisdiction though court had personal jurisdiction of defendants, since legislature in enacting § 20-4-103 and this section localized proceedings involving real estate. Carter v. Brown, 196 Tenn. 35, 263 S.W.2d 757, 1953 Tenn. LEXIS 403 (1953).

Where a tract of land lies partly in two counties, jurisdiction of a court in either county is undoubted. Medlock v. Ferrari, 602 S.W.2d 241, 1979 Tenn. App. LEXIS 397 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1979).

10. —Decedent's Estates — Lands in Another County.

In suits to administer estates of decedents, the court may decree the sale of lands in any county, under § 30-606 (now § 30-2-403). The question was reserved as to whether this rule applies to general creditors' bills in chancery to wind up insolvent corporations. French v. Buffatt, 161 Tenn. 500, 33 S.W.2d 92, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 35 (1930).

Jurisdiction of a suit to foreclose a vendor's lien would be in the county where the land lay even though the court of another county had jurisdiction of the estate of the deceased owner of the land. Patrick v. Hardin, 215 Tenn. 348, 385 S.W.2d 905, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 526 (1964).

Where holder of notes secured by vendor's lien on land failed to file claim with administratrix of insolvent estate in accordance with § 30-704 (now § 30-5-104), action for money judgment was barred but suit to enforce vendor's lien could be brought in county where land lay. Patrick v. Hardin, 215 Tenn. 348, 385 S.W.2d 905, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 526 (1964).

11. —Quiet Title.

Under a bill to quiet title and to have rights declared in the land, nonresident defendants may be brought in by publication, for personal service of process is dispensed with in such cases. Attachment of the land is unnecessary. The filing of the bill in such case creates a lis pendens, and the issuance of an injunction is sufficient. Ray v. Haag, 1 Tenn. Ch. App. 249 (1901).

Where a nonresident defendant was before the court by publication, and the cause was at issue by pro confesso, and evidence taken before the pro confesso was read on the trial without objection, though the nonresident defendant never in fact appeared, objection to such evidence because taken before the pro confesso cannot be made for the first time in the appellate court, especially when there upon writ of error, because such writ waives all such objections. Ray v. Haag, 1 Tenn. Ch. App. 249 (1901).

Proceeding seeking to enjoin foreclosure of trust deed on land, to enjoin transfer of note secured by such trust deed, to cancel trust deed and note and to recover for breach of contract for alleged failure to fulfill contract to construct dwelling on such land was a suit to clear title and venue was in county where land lay. Stinnett v. Tom-Ken Builders, Inc., 214 Tenn. 262, 379 S.W.2d 766, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 473 (1964).

12. —Bill to Confirm Exchange of Minor's Realty.

Bill to confirm exchange of realty belonging to minor must be brought in county where minor resides, or in county where land lies. Smartt v. Smartt, 1 Tenn. App. 68, — S.W. —, 1925 Tenn. App. LEXIS 12 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1925).

13. —Resulting Trust in Land.

A bill against nonresidents to divest title to land and to enforce resulting trust relating to land is within the jurisdiction of the chancery court of the county in which the land lies. Robert v. Frogge, 149 Tenn. 181, 258 S.W. 782, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1924).

Since a bill to divest title to land and to enforce a resulting trust relating to land brings the property within the grasp of the court as effectively as if attachment had issued, a decree rendered thereon was binding on defendants proceeded against as nonresidents, in so far as the land was concerned. Robert v. Frogge, 149 Tenn. 181, 258 S.W. 782, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1924).

14. —Suit to Remove Clouds.

A suit to recover possession of land and to remove clouds upon complainant's title is a local action and is properly brought in the county where the land, or part of it, lies; and the recovery sought for the value of the timber cut and removed is merely incidental. Frankfort Land Co. v. Hughett, 137 Tenn. 32, 191 S.W. 530, 1916 Tenn. LEXIS 50 (1916).

15. —Realty Converted Into Personalty.

Statute requiring that actions relating to real estate be filed in county where real estate is situated did not apply to house and lot treated as personal property under doctrine of equitable conversion, and fact that such house and lot were situated in county did not give county court jurisdiction over action against nonresident executor by virtue of service of process on clerk of county court. Pinkerton v. Fox, 23 Tenn. App. 159, 129 S.W.2d 514, 1939 Tenn. App. LEXIS 22 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1939).

16. —Supplemental Bill by Purchaser at Judicial Sale.

Where the chancery court acquires jurisdiction properly, and decrees lands to be sold in its county and lands in another county, the purchaser of the lands in the other county may file a supplemental bill in the case, if done before the payment of the purchase price or termination of the suit, making new parties who are nonresidents, and have the legal title divested out of them, or have his purchase rescinded for failure of title, though such new parties did not appear or make defense. Robertson v. Winchester, 85 Tenn. 171, 1 S.W. 781, 1886 Tenn. LEXIS 28 (1886).

17. —Partition.

If any portion of the land sought to be sold for partition lies in the county of the chancery court, it has jurisdiction to sell the lands in any other county or counties within the state. Todd v. Cannon, 27 Tenn. 512, 1847 Tenn. LEXIS 119 (1847); Winchester v. Winchester, 38 Tenn. 460, 1858 Tenn. LEXIS 213 (1858).

18. —Action Sounding in Tort.

Because third-party plaintiffs' claim against third-party defendant was one in tort, based on the tortious interference with a business relationship involving a land sale contract, and the alleged tortious conduct took place in Sullivan County, and at all times relevant to the claim, third-party defendant was a resident of Sullivan County, the proper venue for the claim was Sullivan County. Valley Fidelity Bank & Trust Co. v. Ayers, 861 S.W.2d 366, 1993 Tenn. App. LEXIS 361 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1993).

19. Enjoining Proceedings at Law.

20. —Court's Own Execution.

A court of chancery will entertain an original bill, in a proper case, to enjoin its own execution. Anderson v. Mullenix, 73 Tenn. 287, 1880 Tenn. LEXIS 126 (1880).

21. —County to Which Execution Issued.

A bill to enjoin an execution may be filed in the county to which it has been issued and the officer is sufficient as a material defendant. Douglass v. Joyner, 60 Tenn. 32, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 471 (1872).

22. —County of Prosecution.

Where bills in two suits consolidated and tried by chancery court in Rutherford County alleged that certain notes had been procured by fraud, and prayed that injunction issue restraining defendants from further prosecution of notes in circuit court of Rutherford County and that an accounting by trustee of defendant bank be required and judgments rendered against trustee and bank, chancery court had jurisdiction of suits to enjoin even though defendants were residents of, and served in, Gibson County; but upon these facts it had no jurisdiction to entertain suits for accounting and judgment thereon, if objection was properly and seasonably made. Gregory v. Merchants State Bank, 23 Tenn. App. 567, 135 S.W.2d 465, 1939 Tenn. App. LEXIS 63 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1939).

In suit brought in chancery court of Rutherford County to enjoin defendant from further prosecution of note in circuit court of that county, and in which complainants demanded an accounting and judgment thereon, the statutory jurisdiction of the chancery court to issue such an injunction failed for defect of proof, and with this failure all of its power likewise failed except its power to give judgment for costs. Gregory v. Merchants State Bank, 23 Tenn. App. 567, 135 S.W.2d 465, 1939 Tenn. App. LEXIS 63 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1939).

23. Nonresidents and Unknowns.

Where insurance company, deposited sum in court with interpleader bill, claiming that the same might be claimed by a Tennessee resident or certain Texas residents, the money in question was never the property of the Texas residents but the property of the insurance company and therefore not an in rem proceeding such as would authorize jurisdiction over the Texas residents to be extent of the res. American Nat'l Ins. Co. v. Newland, 202 Tenn. 134, 303 S.W.2d 332, 1957 Tenn. LEXIS 371 (1957).

24 —Unknown Parties Defendant.

A bill will not lie against unknown parties at all, unless there is tangible property upon which to base jurisdiction, or unless the unknown party is identified by description, so that the publication may be directed to a sufficiently identified individual; but where the court has no control of property, and no means of identifying the unknown party, publication would rest on nothing, and would be simply nugatory. Creswell v. Smith, 2 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 416 (1875).

25. —Partnership Settlement.

The chancery court of a county in which a partnership was formed and conducted has jurisdiction, under this statute, of a suit by resident partner against the other partner who is a nonresident, for a partnership settlement, or to ascertain a debt growing out of the partnership transactions; and to issue to other counties attachments, injunctions, or other necessary process. Wells v. Collins, 79 Tenn. 213, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1883).

If, in addition, the object of a bill for debt, growing out of partnership in county where formed and conducted, be to attach a judgment recovered by the nonresident defendant partner against a third person, and to have the benefit of any recovery in a suit commenced by him in the chancery court of another county for the collection of the judgment, the object may be attained by impounding the existing judgment and the expected recovery for its collection, without interfering with the prosecution of the suit; but if the injunction sued out be broader than it ought to be, it would not affect the jurisdiction of the court granting it, because it is subject to be modified on motion. Wells v. Collins, 79 Tenn. 213, 1883 Tenn. LEXIS 45 (1883).

A bill to wind up an association, filed in Bedford County, and thereunder to sell its lands in Davidson County, was sustained where personal appearance was entered and the local jurisdiction of the court not challenged as set forth in § 16-616 (repealed). Johnson v. Evans, 1 Tenn. Ch. App. 603 (1903).

26. —Reformation of Assignment of Life Policy.

Where the insured, in a life policy assigned it to his mother who thereafter died before his death, sued to reform the assignment to make it conform to an alleged actual agreement between them, to which suit the nonresident insurance company and the distributees of the mother, both residents and nonresidents, were made parties, such suit was to settle the interests of only those made parties, and was quasi in rem, and the court having jurisdiction of the res or policy, though it was in the actual possession of complainant, but in the power of the court at any moment to order its actual filing, had jurisdiction of the whole cause and could by its judgment bind the nonresident defendant distributees. Perry v. Young, 133 Tenn. 522, 182 S.W. 577, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 116, L.R.A. (n.s.) 1917B385 (1916).

27. —Suit Quasi in Rem.

A suit against a nonresident, without the service of process, upon seizure of property and publication, is necessarily a local action, and a suit quasi in rem; and it must be brought in the court that has jurisdiction of the property. Robert v. Frogge, 149 Tenn. 181, 258 S.W. 782, 1923 Tenn. LEXIS 91 (1924).

28. Attachment.

29. —Purpose.

An attachment is levied against property of defendant. Terril v. Rogers, 4 Tenn. 203, 1817 Tenn. LEXIS 8 (1817).

The object of the provision as to publication or judicial attachment was to give the court jurisdiction when the defendant could not, for any reason, be personally served with process. It was neither intended to, nor does it, deprive any other chancery court of the jurisdiction it may be able to acquire over the person by actual service of process on a defendant found within its county or jurisdictional district, as provided in § 16-11-203 (repealed). Parkes v. Parkes, 3 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 647 (1878).

30. —Realty — When Attachment Unnecessary.

An attachment of real property is not required, when the filing of a proper bill creates a lien lis pendens. Ray v. Haag, 1 Tenn. Ch. App. 249 (1901).

31. —Impossibility of Personal Service.

The attachment, under this statute, can only be issued in lieu of personal service of process; and the provision does not apply if process can be personally served. Simonton v. Porter, 60 Tenn. 213, 1872 Tenn. LEXIS 475 (1873).

32. —Claim by Nonresident Debtor.

Where a fund is already in court, brought there under an attachment against a nonresident debtor of the complainant, and the debtor put in a plea disclaiming the property or fund, but stating that it was the property of a nonresident firm of which he was a member, the complainant may file an amended and supplemental bill against the other members of the firm to ascertain the interest of his debtor in the fund, and a prayer that the fund already in court be held subject to the order of the court probably dispenses with a formal attachment thereof, and the court has jurisdiction. Morrow v. Fossick, 71 Tenn. 129, 1879 Tenn. LEXIS 47 (1879).

33. —Foreign Corporation's Property Attached.

A foreign corporation, though doing business in this state, is a nonresident within the meaning of our attachment laws, and may be proceeded against by attachment of its property. Hadley v. Freedman's Sav. & Trust Co., 2 Cooper's Tenn. Ch. 122 (1874).

34. Lands Situated in Another State.

Although a partition of lands lying without the state cannot be made, nor can they be sold under the decrees of the courts of this state, and, consequently, a partition of land lying in this state cannot be made by the courts of another state; a suit for specific performance may be maintained when the land lies out of the state, if the court has jurisdiction of the person of the defendant. Johnson v. Kimbro, 40 Tenn. 557, 1859 Tenn. LEXIS 164 (1859); Topp v. White, 59 Tenn. 165, 1873 Tenn. LEXIS 43 (1873); Miller v. Birdsong, 66 Tenn. 531, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 176 (1874).

Chancery has no jurisdiction to entertain a suit to try title to or to recover possession of land, or to enjoin a threatened trespass, where the land is situated in another state, so that, to enforce its decree, the process of the court would have to act upon the property, since such actions are local, and not transitory, while chancery acts in personam, and not in rem. Anderson-Tully Co. v. Thompson, 132 Tenn. 80, 177 S.W. 66, 1915 Tenn. LEXIS 3 (1915).

35. —Land Lying Partly in Another State.

Where the tract of land lies both in this state and in an adjoining state, the chancery court here cannot decree a sale of that part lying in the adjoining state, but if the holder of the legal title is before the court, he may, in a proper case, be compelled to convey the same to a resident administrator, and then the administrator may be directed to sell the same for the benefit of creditors, under the direction of the court. Miller v. Birdsong, 66 Tenn. 531, 1874 Tenn. LEXIS 176 (1874).

36. Suit in Wrong County — Fee for Receiver Appointed.

Where suit to wind up an insolvent corporation was brought in wrong county, and receiver was appointed, the court had jurisdiction to allow such receiver a fee for the work done by him. Crosby Milling Co. v. Grant, 7 Tenn. App. 162, — S.W. —, 1927 Tenn. App. LEXIS 19 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1927).

37. Abatement Plea.

The usual rule is that jurisdiction of the court over the subject matter need not be pleaded in abatement, but where, under this section, the court has general original jurisdiction and the limitation on its power is only on its power to decree as to realty in another county, no question as to local jurisdiction of the court can be raised except by plea in abatement, demurrer or motion to dismiss. Section 16-11-114 is read into this section or along with it. Johnson v. Evans, 1 Tenn. Ch. App. 603 (1903); Crosby Milling Co. v. Grant, 154 Tenn. 375, 289 S.W. 511, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1926).

Chancellor's jurisdiction where bill in nature of general creditor's bill, involving sale of land, none of which was located in county, was properly raised by plea in abatement, which plea was not waived by answer after plea overruled. Crosby Milling Co. v. Grant, 154 Tenn. 375, 289 S.W. 511, 1926 Tenn. LEXIS 136 (1926).

Where a judgment creditor with nulla bona return filed a bill in Washington County to reach defendant's interest in realty lying in Knox County along with interest in realty in Washington County, a plea in abatement deprived the court of jurisdiction to sell the interest in the separate tract in Knox County. French v. Buffatt, 161 Tenn. 500, 33 S.W.2d 92, 1930 Tenn. LEXIS 35 (1930).

Collateral References. 77 Am. Jur. 2d Venue §§ 1-39.

21 C.J.S. Courts § 15.

Venue 2.

16-11-115. Jurisdiction of contract enforcement.

Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, contracts for goods or services between individuals, partnerships, associations, corporations, governmental entities or limited liability companies are enforceable in either chancery or circuit court in the county where:

  1. The defendant may be found;
  2. The contract was executed;
  3. The goods were provided or were to be provided; or
  4. Services were rendered or were to be rendered.

Acts 2007, ch. 351, § 2.

Part 2
Operation

16-11-201. Transfers between courts.

Any cause pending in the chancery court may be transferred, by consent of parties, to the chancery court of another county.

Code 1858, § 4308 (deriv. Acts 1835-1836, ch. 4, § 10); Shan., § 6118; mod. Code 1932, § 10386; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-618.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, § 47.

Collateral References. 21 C.J.S. Courts §§ 502, 507.

72 C.J.S. Process § 32.

16-11-202. Relief from firearm disabilities imposed on persons adjudicated as mental defective or judicially committed to mental institution.

  1. A person who is subject to 18 U.S.C. § 922(d)(4) and (g)(4) because the person has been adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution, as defined in § 16-11-206, may petition the chancery court that entered the judicial commitment or adjudication order or the chancery court where the petitioner resides for relief from the firearm disabilities imposed by the adjudication or judicial commitment; provided, that the person may not petition the court until three (3) years from the date of release from commitment or the date of the adjudication order, whichever is later.
  2. A copy of the petition for relief shall also be served on the district attorney general of the judicial district in which the original judicial commitment or adjudication occurred. The district attorney general may appear, support, object to, or present evidence relevant to the relief sought by the petitioner.
  3. The court shall receive and consider evidence in an open proceeding, including evidence offered by the petitioner, concerning:
    1. The circumstances that led to the imposition of the firearms disability under 18 U.S.C. § 922(d)(4) and (g)(4);
    2. The petitioner's mental health records;
    3. The petitioner's criminal history;
    4. The petitioner's reputation; and
    5. Changes in the petitioner's condition or circumstances relevant to the relief sought.
  4. The court shall grant the petition for relief if it finds by a preponderance of the evidence and enters into the record the following:
    1. The petitioner is no longer likely to act in a manner that is dangerous to public safety; and
    2. Granting the relief would not be contrary to the public interest.
  5. A record of the proceedings, to be provided by the petitioner, shall be made by a certified court reporter or by court-approved electronic means.
  6. The petitioner may appeal a final order denying the requested relief, and the review on appeal, if granted, shall be de novo.
  7. A person may file a petition for relief under this section no more than once every two (2) years.
  8. Relief from a firearm disability granted under this section has no effect on the loss of civil rights, including firearm rights, for any reason other than the particular adjudication as a mental defective or judicial commitment to a mental institution from which relief is granted.
  9. When the court issues an order granting a petition of relief under subsection (d), the court clerk shall, as soon as practicable but no later than thirty (30) days after issuance, forward a copy of the order to the Tennessee bureau of investigation (TBI). The TBI, upon receipt of the order, shall:
    1. Immediately forward a copy of the order to the department of safety;
    2. Update the National Instant Criminal Background Check System database and transmit the corrected records to the federal bureau of investigation; and
    3. Remove and destroy all records relating to the petition for relief from any database over which the TBI exercises control.
  10. The TBI and the department of safety shall not use or permit the use of the records or information obtained or retained pursuant to this section for any purpose not specified in this section.

Acts 2015, ch. 459, § 2.

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-11-202 (Acts 1909, ch. 551, § 2; Shan., § 5745a5; Code 1932, § 9941; Acts 1941, ch. 47, §§ 1-4; C. Supp. 1950, §§ 9945.1-9945.4; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 16-619 — 16-623), concerning adjourned terms, was repealed by Acts 1984, ch. 931, § 22. For provisions abolishing terms of court, see § 16-2-510.

Effective Dates. Acts 2015, ch. 459, § 6. July 1, 2015.

16-11-203. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-11-203 (Code 1858, § 4305; Shan., § 6115; Code 1932, § 10383; T.C.A., (orig. ed.), § 16-624), concerning action in personam, was repealed by Acts 1992, ch. 753, § 1.

16-11-204. Counterpart summons.

Counterpart summons, accompanied by copies of the bill, may be issued to any other counties of the state for defendants not to be found in the county in which the suit is properly brought.

Code 1858, § 4306 (deriv. Acts 1789, ch. 57, § 1); Shan., § 6116; Code 1932, § 10384; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-625.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 11 Tenn. Juris., Banks and Banking, § 54; 11 Tenn. Juris., Equity, §§ 13, 27.

Cited: Wilkins v. Jetton, 8 Tenn. App. 641, — S.W.2d —, 1928 Tenn. App. LEXIS 187 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1928); Minor v. E. I. Du Pont De Nemours & Co., 164 Tenn. 226, 47 S.W.2d 748, 1931 Tenn. LEXIS 26 (1932).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Stockholders — Service On.

Where bill to wind up corporation as insolvent is filed in county of its home office, process may issue to other counties to bring in stockholders as defendants. Sugg v. Farmers' Mut. Ins. Ass'n, 63 S.W. 226, 1901 Tenn. Ch. App. LEXIS 66 (1901).

2. Foreign Corporation Sued.

Where a corporation of another state appeared and defended the bill, this was equivalent to service of process within the jurisdiction, and authorized the issuance of counterpart process for all other material defendants in any county within the state. University v. Cambreling, 14 Tenn. 78, 14 Tenn. 79, 1834 Tenn. LEXIS 56 (1834).

Suit against a foreign insurance company by service on the insurance commissioner may be brought in any county, with counterpart to another county for a material defendant, after the insurance company has ceased to do business in the state. Southern Paving Const. Co. v. Knoxville, 245 F. 421, 1917 U.S. App. LEXIS 1503 (6th Cir. Tenn. 1917).

3. Actions on Bonds.

After surety on performance bond had been made party to action for declaration of rights of subcontractors on general contractor's performance bond by service in the county, surety was entitled to file cross bill against principal on bond and indemnitor of surety who had been served by counterpart summons as residents of another county. Engert v. Peerless Ins. Co., 53 Tenn. App. 310, 382 S.W.2d 541, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 105 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

In declaratory judgment proceeding brought by subcontractors for declaration of their rights to payment by the surety on a general contractors' performance bond, where insurance company which was surety on the bond was found in county where suit was brought, service on principal on the bond and indemnitor of surety could be had by counterpart summons where they were residents of another county. Engert v. Peerless Ins. Co., 53 Tenn. App. 310, 382 S.W.2d 541, 1964 Tenn. App. LEXIS 105 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1964).

16-11-205. Process to other counties in general.

If the suit is properly instituted, attachments, injunctions, and all other process known to the court, and necessary to attain the ends of justice, may be issued to any other county.

Code 1858, § 4307; Shan., § 6117; Code 1932, § 10385; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 16-626.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Jurisdiction.

When chancery court takes jurisdiction for one purpose, it will take jurisdiction for all purposes incidental to the jurisdiction of the main subject. Martin v. Martin, 755 S.W.2d 793, 1988 Tenn. App. LEXIS 18 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988).

16-11-206. Information to be collected and reported to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS index and the department of safety by those chancery courts in which commitments to a mental institution are ordered.

  1. As used in this section:
    1. “Adjudication as a mental defective or adjudicated as a mental defective” means:
      1. A determination by a court in this state that a person, as a result of marked subnormal intelligence, mental illness, incompetency, condition or disease:
        1. Is a danger to such person or to others; or
        2. Lacks the ability to contract or manage such person's own affairs due to mental defect;
      2. A finding of insanity by a court in a criminal proceeding; or
      3. A finding that a person is incompetent to stand trial or is found not guilty by reason of insanity pursuant to §§ 50a and 72b of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, codified in 10 U.S.C. §§ 850a, 876b;
    2. “Judicial commitment to a mental institution” means a judicially ordered involuntary admission to a private or state hospital or treatment resource in proceedings conducted pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or 7;
    3. “Mental institution” means a mental health facility, mental hospital, sanitarium, psychiatric facility and any other facility that provides diagnoses by a licensed professional of mental retardation or mental illness, including, but not limited to, a psychiatric ward in a general hospital; and
    4. “Treatment resource” means any public or private facility, service or program providing treatment or rehabilitation services for mental illness or serious emotional disturbance, including, but not limited to, detoxification centers, hospitals, community mental health centers, clinics or programs, halfway houses and rehabilitation centers.
  2. Those chancery courts wherein commitments to a mental institution are ordered pursuant to title 33, chapter 6 or chapter 7 or persons are adjudicated as a mental defective shall enter a standing and continuing order instructing the clerk to collect and report as soon as practicable, but no later than the third business day following the date of such an order or adjudication, information described in subsection (c) regarding individuals who have been adjudicated as a mental defective or judicially committed to a mental institution for the purposes of complying with the NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007, P.L. 110-180.
  3. The following information shall be collected and reported to the federal bureau of investigation-NICS index and the department of safety, pursuant to subsection (b):
    1. Complete name and all aliases of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective, including, but not limited to, any names that the individual may have had or currently has by reason of marriage or otherwise;
    2. Case or docket number of the judicial commitment or the adjudication as a mental defective;
    3. Date judicial commitment ordered or adjudication as a mental defective was made;
    4. Private or state hospital or treatment resource to which the individual was judicially committed;
    5. Date of birth of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective, if such information has been provided to the clerk;
    6. Race and sex of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective; and
    7. Social security number of the individual judicially committed or adjudicated as a mental defective if available.
  4. The information in subdivisions (c)(1)–(7), the confidentiality of which is protected by other statutes or regulations, shall be maintained as confidential and not subject to public inspection pursuant to such statutes or regulations, except for such use as may be necessary in the conduct of any proceeding pursuant to §§ 38-6-109, 39-17-1316, and 39-17-1352 — 39-17-1354.

Acts 2009, ch. 578, § 2; 2013, ch. 300, § 4; 2019, ch. 262, §§ 5, 6.

Amendments. The 2013 amendment substituted “collect and report as soon as practicable, but no later than the third business day following the date of such an order or adjudication” for “collect and report January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1 of every year beginning January 1, 2010” in (b).

The 2019 amendment added (c)(6) and (c)(7); and, in (d), substituted “subdivisions (c)(1)-(7)” for “subdivisions (c)(1)-(5)”, and substituted “proceeding pursuant to §§ 38-6-109, 39-17-1316, and 39-17-1352 - 39-17-1354” for “proceedings pursuant to §§ 39-17-1316, 39-17-1353 and 39-17-1354”.

Effective Dates. Acts 2009, ch. 578, § 13. January 1, 2010.

Acts 2013, ch. 300, § 11. July 1, 2013.

Acts 2019, ch. 262, § 7. July 1, 2019.

Cross-References. Confidentiality of public records, § 10-7-504.

Part 1
Establishment

16-15-101. Establishment — Certain counties excepted.

  1. There is created and established a court in and for each county of the state, except in counties having a population of not less than nine thousand one hundred seventy-five (9,175) nor more than nine thousand two hundred (9,200), according to the last federal census or any subsequent federal census, which shall be designated as the court of general sessions.
  2. It is the intent of this section to create a general sessions court in every county not expressly excepted in this section. In any county where a general sessions court has been created pursuant to the general provisions of this chapter, it is intended that the county shall always have a general sessions court unless abolished by another general statute. In counties in which there is no court of general sessions as provided in this section, references in this code to the court of general sessions are deemed to include the court having the jurisdiction of the court of general sessions in such counties.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, §§ 1, 22; 1959, ch. 255, § 1; 1959, ch. 265, § 1; 1961, ch. 30, § 1; 1961, ch. 51, § 1; 1961, ch. 188, § 1; 1963, ch. 307, §§ 1, 2; 1965, ch. 116, § 1; 1974, ch. 507, § 1; 1976, ch. 738, § 1; 1979, ch. 68, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-1101; Acts 1998, ch. 573, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. For table of U.S. decennial populations of Tennessee counties, see Volume 13 and its supplement.

Cross-References. Power of general assembly to create courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 1.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), § 7.1.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, §§ 2, 4.

Law Reviews.

Don't miss a move. Making rules 5 and 5.1 work for your clients in General Sessions Court (Robert Little), 37 No. 3 Tenn. B.J. 12 (2001).

Effective Minor Courts — Key to Court Modernization, (James G. France), 40 Tenn. L. Rev. 29.

The Impossible Balance: A Tennessee judge makes the case for abolishing state's part-time judgeships (Judge James L. Cotton Jr.), 37 No. 5 Tenn. B.J. 12 (2001).

Cited: Crawford v. Gilpatrick, 646 S.W.2d 433, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 608 (Tenn. 1983); Sexton v. Sevier County, 948 S.W.2d 747, 1997 Tenn. App. LEXIS 71 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1997).

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Purpose of Statute.

It was the purpose of Acts 1959, ch. 109 to create a statewide system of courts of general sessions except in those counties expressly excepted from the application of the statute. Biggs v. Memphis Loan & Thrift Co., 215 Tenn. 294, 385 S.W.2d 118, 1964 Tenn. LEXIS 566 (1964); Lawler v. McCanless, 220 Tenn. 342, 417 S.W.2d 548, 1967 Tenn. LEXIS 418, 1967 Tenn. LEXIS 419 (1967).

Collateral References. Counties 24.

16-15-102. Courtroom — Supplies and equipment — Expenses.

  1. Each county shall provide a courtroom for the general sessions court in the county seat and all necessary supplies and equipment for the maintenance of the court and shall defray the expenses thereof from the general fund of the county.
  2. In counties having a population of not less than thirteen thousand two hundred seventy-five (13,275) nor more than thirteen thousand two hundred ninety-five (13,295) and not less than fourteen thousand six hundred fifty (14,650) nor more than fourteen thousand six hundred seventy (14,670), according to the federal census of 1960 and every subsequent federal census, the general sessions judges shall be entitled to secretarial and office expenses in the amount of six hundred dollars ($600) per annum, payable monthly from the general funds of such counties.
  3. In counties having a population of not less than twenty-four thousand two hundred twenty (24,220) nor more than twenty-four thousand two hundred thirty-five (24,235) or not less than twelve thousand five hundred (12,500) nor more than twelve thousand six hundred (12,600), according to the 1960 federal census or any subsequent federal census, the general sessions judge shall be entitled to an allowance of one thousand dollars ($1,000) per annum, for secretarial and office expenses and the same shall be paid in equal monthly installments from the general fund of the counties.
  4. In counties of this state having a population of not less than twenty-four thousand five hundred seventy (24,570) nor more than twenty-four thousand five hundred eighty (24,580), according to the 1960 federal census or any subsequent federal census, the general sessions judge shall be entitled to an allowance of one thousand eight hundred dollars ($1,800) per annum for secretarial and office expenses, to be paid in equal monthly installments from the general fund of the county.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 1; 1961, ch. 146, § 1; 1961, ch. 279, § 1; 1965, ch. 366, § 1; 1968, ch. 430, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-1102.

Compiler's Notes. For table of U.S. decennial populations of Tennessee counties, see Volume 13 and its supplement.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Compensation for Special General Sessions Judges.

No statute explicitly requires counties to compensate special general sessions court judges appointed in accordance with Tenn. Code Ann. § 17-2-116(a)(1); this obligation, however, must necessarily be implied from the statutes creating the general sessions courts, providing for their funding, and governing the selection not only of regular general sessions judges but also of their temporary replacements. State ex rel. Witcher v. Bilbrey, 878 S.W.2d 567, 1994 Tenn. App. LEXIS 103 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1994).

16-15-103. Holding court at places other than county seat.

The county legislative body of each county shall be authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to require the court of general sessions to meet at not more than three (3) places in the county in addition to the county seat, to prescribe the place or places of meeting of the court, and to provide a courtroom, equipment and furnishings at such other places in the county in addition to the county seat for the sessions of the court.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 1; impl. am. Acts 1978, ch. 934, §§ 7, 36; T.C.A., § 16-1103.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, § 2.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

Collateral References.

Place of holding sessions of trial court as affecting validity of its proceedings. 18 A.L.R.3d 572.

Part 2
Judge

16-15-201. Judge of court — Qualifications — Number.

  1. There shall be one (1) judge for each court with the same qualifications and term of office as provided by the constitution of Tennessee for inferior courts.
  2. In addition to the qualifications prescribed in subsection (a), the judges of courts of general sessions of counties of the eighth class having a population of not less than nine thousand two hundred thirty (9,230) nor more than nine thousand two hundred fifty (9,250), according to the 1960 federal census or any subsequent federal census, shall have the qualifications required for the courts of record provided for in § 17-1-106.
  3. In addition to the qualifications prescribed in subsection (a), the judges of courts of general sessions of counties of the seventh class having a population of not less than fourteen thousand six hundred fifty (14,650) nor more than fourteen thousand six hundred seventy (14,670), according to the 1960 federal census or any subsequent federal census, shall have the qualifications required for the courts of record provided for in § 17-1-106.
  4. In addition to the qualifications prescribed in subsection (a), the judges of courts of general sessions of counties of the fifth class having a population of not less than twenty-eight thousand six hundred sixty (28,660) nor more than twenty-eight thousand six hundred ninety (28,690), according to the 1980 federal census or any subsequent federal census, shall have the qualifications required for the courts of record provided for in § 17-1-106.
  5. This section shall not be construed to affect or change the number of judges prescribed for any court of general sessions in any county by private act in effect as of March 11, 1959, or any private act that may be thereafter enacted prescribing more than one (1) judge for a court of general sessions in a particular county. In event of any conflict between this section and a private act as to the number of judges presiding over the court of general sessions in any particular county, the private act shall control.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 9; 1965, ch. 114, § 2; 1967, ch. 276, § 2; 1968, ch. 635, § 2; 1969, ch. 44, § 2; modified; T.C.A., § 16-1105; Acts 1982, ch. 564, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Section 1 of Acts 1968, ch. 635 amended Acts 1965, ch. 114 by providing for local approval, and § 2 of Acts 1968, ch. 635 validated Acts 1965, ch. 114. Acts 1968, ch. 635 has been approved by the local governing body.

Section 1 of Acts 1969, ch. 44 amended Acts 1967, ch. 276 by providing for local approval and § 2 of Acts 1969, ch. 44 validated Acts 1967, ch. 276. Acts 1969, ch. 44 has been approved by the local governing body.

For table of U.S. decennial populations of Tennessee counties, see Volume 13 and its supplement.

Cross-References. Compensation and qualifications of judges, jurisdiction, title 50, ch. 15, part 50.

Qualifications of judges of inferior courts, Tenn. Const., art. VI, § 4.

Textbooks. Tennessee Criminal Practice and Procedure (Raybin), §§ 6.1, 7.1.

Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, § 4.

Law Reviews.

The Impossible Balance: A Tennessee judge makes the case for abolishing state's part-time judgeships (Judge James L. Cotton Jr.), 37 No. 5 Tenn. B.J. 12 (2001).

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

NOTES TO DECISIONS

1. Qualifications.

There is no mandatory general law prescribing requisite qualifications of judges of general sessions courts. Crawford v. Gilpatrick, 646 S.W.2d 433, 1983 Tenn. LEXIS 608 (Tenn. 1983).

16-15-202. Election — Term.

  1. The judges of the court of general sessions shall be elected at the general August election each eight (8) years. They shall hold office for the term for which they are elected or until their successors are elected and qualified. Notwithstanding any other provision of private act or general law to the contrary, the term of office of any general sessions judge whose base salary is set by § 16-15-205 [repealed] or whose salary is adjusted during such term of office by the method provided by § 16-15-205 [repealed] or by the method established by § 8-23-103, shall be eight (8) years.
  2. Notwithstanding § 2-13-203, or any other provisions of a private act or general law to the contrary, in any county with more than one (1) judge of the court of general sessions, and where the most recent of private acts creating the judgeships provide for the nonpartisan election of the additional judges, then at subsequent regular August elections all judges of such court shall be elected on a nonpartisan basis.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 13; modified; T.C.A., § 16-1106; Acts 1982, ch. 945, § 4; 1997, ch. 357, § 1.

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-205, referred to in this section, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 3.

Cross-References. General sessions judges, compensation, duties, qualifications, jurisdiction, part 50 of this chapter.

Textbooks. Tennessee Jurisprudence, 17 Tenn. Juris., Justices of Peace and General Sessions Courts, § 3.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

16-15-203. Oath.

The oath of office shall be the same as that prescribed for circuit court judges and chancellors and shall be taken and filed in the same manner and with the same officers as prescribed for circuit court judges and chancellors.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 13; T.C.A., § 16-1107.

Cross-References. Oaths of judges and chancellors, § 17-1-104.

Law Reviews.

The Tennessee Court System — General Sessions Court (Frederic S. Le Clercq), 8 Mem. St. U.L. Rev. 375.

16-15-204. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-204 (Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 11; modified; T.C.A. § 16-1108), concerning the classification of counties for determining compensation of judges, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 2.

16-15-205. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-205 (Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 11; 1961, ch. 30, § 2; 1963, ch. 346, § 1; 1965, ch. 97, § 1; 1965, ch. 113, § 1; 1965, ch. 245, § 1; 1965, ch. 341, § 1; 1965, ch. 365, § 1; 1965, ch. 366, § 2; 1967, ch. 13, § 1; 1967, ch. 234, § 1; 1968, ch. 444, § 1; 1968, ch. 454, § 1; 1968, ch. 490, § 1; 1968, ch. 499, § 1; 1968, ch. 504, § 1; 1969, ch. 72, § 1; 1969, ch. 94, § 1; 1969, ch. 100, § 1; 1969, ch. 122, § 1; 1971, ch. 95, § 1; 1972, ch. 790, § 1; 1974, ch. 432, § 1; 1974, ch. 607, § 1; 1974, ch. 808, § 1; 1975, ch. 348, § 1; 1977, ch. 44, § 6; 1978, ch. 564, § 1; 1979, ch. 400, § 1; 1980, ch. 832, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-1109; Acts 1981, ch. 456, § 1; 1982, ch. 564, § 2; 1982, ch. 761, § 1; 1982, ch. 920, § 1; 1982, ch. 945, § 1; 1987, ch. 307, § 1), concerning salaries of general sessions court judges, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 3.

16-15-206. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-206 (Acts 1959, Ch. 109, § 11; modified; T.C.A. § 16-1110), concerning the salaries of general sessions court judges presiding over courts that had been created by a special act, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 4.

16-15-207. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-207 (Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 11; T.C.A., § 11-1112), concerning the payment of general sessions court judges' salaries, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 5.

16-15-208. [Repealed.]

Compiler's Notes. Former § 16-15-208 (Acts 1959, ch. 109, §§ 11, 12; 1965, ch. 101, § 1; 1974, ch. 808, § 2; 1978, ch. 518, §§ 1, 2; 1979, ch. 400, § 2; 1980, ch. 832, § 2; modified; T.C.A., § 16-1113; 1982, ch. 945, § 5; 1987, ch. 11, § 1; 1987, ch. 453, § 1; 1988, ch. 541, § 1; 1993, ch. 66, § 23), concerning the required hours for general sessions court judges, and limitations on the practice of law by the judges, was repealed by Acts 1993, ch. 241, § 6.

16-15-209. Failure of judge to attend — Selection of special judge.

  1. If the judge of a court of general sessions or juvenile court finds it necessary to be absent from holding court, the judge may seek a special judge in accordance with the requirements of and in the numerical sequence designated by this section.
    1. If a special judge is necessary, the judge shall attempt to identify another judge who may serve by interchange, pursuant to § 17-2-208. If another judge cannot serve by interchange, a judge may seek to find any former or retired judge, who will, by mutual agreement, sit as special judge. The special judge shall serve by designation of the chief justice of the supreme court.
    2. If the judge is unable to secure a judge under subdivision (a)(1), the judge may apply to the administrative office of the courts for assistance in finding a judge to sit by designation of the chief justice as a special judge.
    3. Only after exhausting the procedures set out in subdivisions (a)(1) and (2), a judge may appoint a lawyer from a list, on a rotating basis, of lawyers that have been previously approved by the judge or judges of the district or county who are constitutionally qualified, in good standing, and possess sufficient experience and expertise. A lawyer appointed is subject to the following limitations, which shall be made known to persons attending any court proceeding presided over by a lawyer, as evidenced by an entry in the minutes or other permanent record of the court:
      1. The lawyer may preside only if the parties and counsel are notified that the duly elected or appointed judge will be absent and that a practicing lawyer will serve as a special judge;
      2. The parties choose to proceed and not to continue the case pending return of the duly elected or appointed judge;
      3. The lawyer shall not approve the payment of attorney's fees involving an indigent defense claim or any discretionary fees. A special judge shall approve fees only when the exact amount is set by statute; and
      4. At the opening of any court session presided over by a lawyer appointed pursuant to this section, an announcement shall be made to persons in attendance conveying the information contained in subdivisions (a)(3)(A) and (B). The making of such an announcement constitutes compliance with the notice requirements of this section.
  2. A general sessions or juvenile judge assigned to a court outside the judge's county of residence shall receive reimbursement for travel expenses from the county to which the judge is assigned. Reimbursement shall be in an amount in accordance with the comprehensive travel regulations promulgated by the supreme court.
  3. The county legislative body, by resolution adopted by a two-thirds (2/3) vote, may authorize the payment of compensation to a special judge selected pursuant to subdivision (a)(2). The amount of compensation shall not exceed the rate of compensation for other judges of the general sessions court or juvenile court for the county.
  4. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivisions (a)(1) and (2), a general sessions or juvenile judge who encounters a sudden and unexpected emergency which causes the judge to be absent from court may forego the requirements of those subdivisions and appoint a lawyer in accordance with subdivision (a)(3). The circumstances requiring the appointment of a lawyer pursuant to this subsection (d) shall be entered upon the minutes or other permanent record of the court in addition to the information required in subdivision (a)(3).
    1. Upon approval of this subsection (e) and subsections (f)-(h) by resolution adopted by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the county legislative body of any county having a population in excess of eight hundred thousand (800,000), according to the 1990 federal census or any subsequent federal census, and notwithstanding any other provision of this subsection (e) and subsections (f)-(h) to the contrary, if a judge of a court of general sessions or juvenile court in the county finds it necessary to be absent from holding court, another judge may sit by interchange for the absent judge upon entering an order finding it in the best interest of judicial efficiency. The order shall identify the absent judge and the interchanging judge, and shall be kept on file in the office of the clerk of the court. Upon a finding that interchange is not in the best interest of judicial efficiency, the judge so finding may appoint an attorney as a special judge. The appointments shall be on a rotating basis, from a list of attorneys previously approved by all of the duly elected or appointed general sessions or juvenile court judges, as being constitutionally qualified, in good standing, and possessing sufficient experience and skill. The appointment of a special judge shall be by written order, identifying the absent judge and the special judge, and shall be kept on file in the office of the clerk of the court.
    2. During the month of September each year, the clerk of the court shall prepare, for each division of court governed by subdivision (e)(1), an annual report for the preceding twelve (12) months, setting out the total number of sessions of court presided over by a special judge, or by a judge sitting by interchange. The clerk shall also report the total number of sessions of court that are scheduled in each division of court for that period. The orders and reports required by this subdivision (e)(2) shall be filed, and kept open for public inspection, by the clerk of the court. The clerk of the court shall promptly file a copy of the annual report with the administrative office of the courts, created by § 16-3-801.
  5. All special judges appointed under subsection (e) shall be subject to the following limitations:
    1. All parties and counsel appearing before the special judge shall be notified that the duly elected or appointed judge is absent, and that a practicing attorney is serving as special judge;
    2. If there is no duly elected or appointed judge available to preside over the trial of a contested case, either side shall be entitled to continue the case pending the return of a duly elected or appointed judge;
    3. A special judge shall not preside over a contested cause without a consent form signed by all litigants who are present at the beginning of the proceeding. The consent form shall be kept on file with the clerk of the court as part of the legal record of that cause; and
    4. A special judge shall not approve the payment of attorney fees, involving an indigent defense claim or any discretionary fees; provided, that a special judge may enter a judgment for attorney fees when:
      1. The exact amount is set by statute; or
      2. The party to be charged has executed a written agreement calling for the payment of attorney fees, and the fees shall be the amount specified in the agreement, but in no case more than one third (1/3) of the principal amount of the debt upon which the suit is brought.
    1. Subsections (e) and (f) shall not apply where a judge finds it necessary to be absent from holding court and appoints as a special judge:
      1. A duly elected or appointed judge of any other juvenile or general sessions court, a trial court judge; or
      2. A full-time officer of the judicial system under the judge's supervision whose duty it is to perform judicial functions, such as a juvenile magistrate, a child support magistrate or clerk and master, who is a licensed attorney in good standing with the Tennessee supreme court. The judicial officer shall only serve as special judge in matters related to that officer's duties as a judicial officer.
    2. Notwithstanding subsections (e) and (f), a general sessions or juvenile court judge shall have the authority to appoint a special judge as provided in subdivision (g)(1).
    1. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, in any county having a population of more than eight hundred thousand (800,000), according to the 1990 federal census or any subsequent federal census, the county governing body of that county may appoint a special substitute judge or judges to serve as a judge in the court of general sessions or juvenile court in the county in the absence of any one (1) of such elected judge or judges.
    2. A special substitute judge appointed shall be an attorney licensed to practice law by this state and in good standing with the board of professional responsibility.
    3. The compensation for a special substitute judge pursuant to subsections (e)-(f) and this subsection (h) shall be fixed by the county governing body and shall be paid from any fund appropriated for such purpose by the county governing body.

Acts 1959, ch. 109, § 14; 1968, ch. 533, § 1; T.C.A., § 16-1114; Acts 1994, ch. 751, § 1; 1997, ch. 473, § 3; 1998, ch. 943, § 1; 2009, ch. 235, § 1; 2010, ch. 757, §§ 1, 2.

Compiler's Notes. For table of U.S. decennial populations of Tennessee counties, see Volume 13 and its supplement.

Acts 2009, ch. 235, § 1 directed the code commission to change all references from “child support referee” to “child support magistrate” and all references from “juvenile referee” to “juvenile magistrate” and to include all such changes in supplements and replacement volumes for the Tennessee Code Annotated.

Amendments. The 2009 amendment substituted “child support magistrate” for “child support referee” and “juvenile magistrate” for “juvenile referee” in (g)(1)(B).

The 2010 amendment, in (a), combined former (1) and (2) as present (1) and rewrote former (1) and (2) which read: “(1)  If a special judge is necessary in a county or district with more than one (1) general sessions or juvenile judge, the judge shall interchange within such judge's county, pursuant to § 17-2-208. If a judge cannot serve by interchange, a judge may seek to find any current, former, or retired judge, who will, by mutual agreement, sit as special judge. The designation shall be made by the chief justice of the supreme court.“(2)  In a county with only one (1) general sessions judge or juvenile court judge, the judge shall seek to find any current, former or retired judge, who will, by mutual agreement, sit as special judge. The special judge shall serve by designation of the chief justice of the supreme court.”, redesignated former (3) and (4) as present (2) and (3), in present (2), substituted “subdivision (a)(1