Yesterday the Tennessee Supreme Court remanded a Davidson County Chancery Court case to the trial court to determine the amount of fees that should be awarded after a successful motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. The statute at issue is Tenn. Code Ann. § 20-12-119(c)
In Donovan v. Hastings, Plaintiff persuaded the trial court to dismiss the defendant’s counterclaim on a Rule 12.02(6) motion, but the trial judge awarded fees incurred only for time spent after the defendant filed an amended counterclaim, and not considering time invested in researching the issues after the original counterclaim was filed. The Court of Appeals affirmed the trial judge in a 2-1 decision. The Supreme Court reversed, interpreting the statute in such a way that fees incurred in gaining the dismissal (up to the statutory cap) were recoverable. The amount of the fees to be awarded on remand will be based on the factors set forth in Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 8, RPC 1.5(a).
There are fourteen civil and and eleven cases currently pending before the Tennessee Supreme Court. You can find the current status of each of those cases by consulting this free resource, Cases Pending Before the Tennessee Supreme Court, on BirdDog Law.