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Questions Answered by Leonard Robert Grefseng
1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts and Legal Malpractice for Tennessee on
Q: negligence, malpractice, breach of contract. unresponsive causing life issues

what do I do if an firm is holding money owed to me in a IOLTA and refuses to give info or release funds. The attorney who represented me now has his own firm and they have shut him out and will not provide him info after promising to release monies owed to me. I have been in this battle for over 1... Read more »

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Dec 5, 2019

Contact the Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility ( this is the board that governs lawyers). This office can assist you with complaint or disputes with your attorney.

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Tennessee on
Q: My stepmother moved out the house where she had a life estate. If we now sell property, does she get any of the money.
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Dec 4, 2019

Most likely - yes, and perhaps more importantly, it's unclear whether you can sell the property without her signature/consent.This is hard to answer without actually seeing the document that created the life estate. I do not think simply "moving out" of the premises is enough to terminate the life... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Civil Litigation for Tennessee on
Q: My wife had an incident regarding her child. The people, who never spoke to her, told the police and court she was drunk

She was not intoxicated. This could severely affect her and her son. Is this slander or defamation of character?

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Dec 2, 2019

No, statements made in court are generally not actionable as defamation.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Tennessee on
Q: How do i get my daughters Name changed in tn.the mother passed away and she was married.im the childs biological father.

Her husband has been out of the picture for 17 yrs.He said he will sign whatever i need signed.I have the Power of Attorney for care of a minor child form.But i am having a hard time with getting an audience with a judge.How do we go about being seen by a judge?So that he can officially sign off on... Read more »

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 27, 2019

A request to change a surname is a court proceeding: you have to file a written petition ( also called a "complaint" under the rules of procedure) and give notice of that filing to any persons or entities that my be affected by your petition ( and in your case, there may not be anyone else). Giving... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Tennessee on
Q: If my ex (which is the primary parent) has additional children, would that affect my cuild support payments?

If my ex ( who is the custodial parent) has additional children in a new relationship, would that affect my child support obligation?

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 26, 2019

Yes- under the guidelines, if either parent has additional children in their home ( or other children outside their home for which they are paying support) this is a factor in the calculation of support.

2 Answers | Asked in Business Law for Tennessee on
Q: I am 49% owner can a 51% partner force me to disolve our LLC and keep using our business name for themselves?
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 19, 2019

Probably yes, but this will depend on the wording of your operating agreement. He will also be required to pay for the use of the business name, but putting a value on this and other aspects of the "good will" of the business can be difficult.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Tennessee on
Q: I live with my partner (not married) I have lived here for 3 yrs. He owns the house, I have no lease can he kick me out?

We own a business together

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 19, 2019

yes- but that does not affect your ownership or the management of the business.

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: Not by my choice, My 2 stepdaughters and i now own 1/3 each of the house that i have lived in for 30 thirty yrs...

I am wanting to downsize and sale. Are they legally bound to accept 1/3 of the agreed on selling price less their contribution expenses for the last 12 years since their father..my husband passed?

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 18, 2019

Yes and No- your question is complicated. As to the sale of the property, yes, you can force them to sell and they will be entitled to one third of the net sale proceeds if your husband/their father died without a will. the more difficult part of the question is the part about deducting their... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Tennessee on
Q: My granddaughter is living in filth and is being made to share her room with my daughter’s boyfriend’s son

The boyfriend has been charged several times with abusing women including my daughter and doesn’t work. What can I do????

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 12, 2019

If you have evidence ( proof for court, not just suspicions) that a child is being abused, you can file a petition ( a written request explaining your reasons and your proof) in Juvenile Court and a hearing will be scheduled where you can present the proof to the Judge. If you convinced the Judge... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Tennessee on
Q: I want to get an annulment

I got married 1 Nov 19 and now I want an annulment

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 11, 2019

Contrary to popular belief, under Tennessee law, the short duration of a marriage is not grounds ( a legal reason) for an annulment. An annulment is the procedure for having a marriage declared void/invalid because of some DEFECT in the marriage itself ( for example, underage parties, fraud or... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Divorce for Tennessee on
Q: I have been estranged from my wife for 17 years and need a divorce.

She took off 17 years ago and I haven't really seen her since. She has a minor child from another man long after she left. I have a child she is not the mother of. Can I file a simple/uncontested in TN

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Nov 7, 2019

Probably not- you surely need a divorce, the problem is that in order for it to be "simple and uncontested" your wife must AGREE and sign paperwork. Your question says your haven't seen her in some time, so to get her to sign, you will have to find her and communicate. It's likely she will also... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Tennessee on
Q: What is the percentage of child support in Tennessee on 2 kids?
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 31, 2019

Child support is no longer figured by a strict percentage of your income. Child support is now based on the monthly gross income of BOTH parents AND the number of days set forth in the parenting plan. There are other factors but the number of days and the parties' income are the most significant.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Tennessee on
Q: Can I apply for an agreed divorce if I have 160$ on my personal 401 k
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 29, 2019

yes, I assume you a re talking about the forms put out by the Supreme court that say they ( the forms) can't be used if you have retirement benefits. The retirement benefits are not the problem, the problem is that dividing the benefits usually requires complicated court orders called QDROs (... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Landlord - Tenant for Tennessee on
Q: I let my ex wife move in to my spare room in hard times. How can I evict her?

My ex wife was going through a rough time and I let her move in to help. Since she moved in I have holes in the walls my personal property has been getting damaged and of course we have been arguing to the point of having the law called on more than one occasion. She has been threatening me with... Read more »

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 28, 2019

In Tennessee, the procedure is to give her written notice to get out. If she was supposed to pay rent, she has 15 days to catch up the rent. Then you file in general session court a "detainer warrant" ( the court clerk will have a form for you to fill out). Actually, it sounds like she is not... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: If two people formed an LLC, to own a rental property, can one of them choose to sell if the other is unresponsive?

My wife and her friend, who lives in Kenya, created an LLC to purchase a rental property in Memphis. The LLC is listed as the owner on the title document. The friend paid the initial deposit and has been collecting all of the revenue from payments made by tenants. My wife agreed to partner with... Read more »

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 24, 2019

If the property is owned by the LLC, the "operating agreement" of the LLC controls resolution of any dispute among the owners/members of the LLC. If there is no "operating agreement," there are state statutes which control the dissolution of the LLC. It is unclear what you mean when you say the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property and Real Estate Law for Tennessee on
Q: Hello I recieved an evition notice for possession only. I have alreaded moved out of the property. Do i have to go to

The court date on the notice?

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 18, 2019

Strictly speaking, you should not have to go- they are seeking "possession only" ( that language is VERY important, so double check) and if you agree or have already surrendered possession, then there is no dispute and no need for you to appear. HOWEVER, as the saying goes - "better safe than... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Tennessee on
Q: My wife and I are filing an uncontested divorce. My question is, can we decide the child support payment?

Say the calculator says the payment would be 1200 a month and she only wants 500, will the court honor the 500 or will they make me pay the full amount

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 17, 2019

In my experience, the judges follow the guidelines ( appellate court decisions says the guidelines have the same effect as laws passed by the legislature). The Judges are under a statutory directive to insure the child support law is obeyed. The guidelines do permit deviations, but only for a very... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Tennessee on
Q: my childs father and I are not married. So paternity form will be filled out. Will he have to go get rights and pay

He thinks he gets out free and visits whenever. Is this true or does he have to go get rights and will they put him on child support.

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 16, 2019

A child born to unmarried parents is, by statute, in the custody of the mother. To assert any parental rights, the father must file a paternity ( now called parentage) action, get DNA testing done to confirm paternity and have the Court/Judge establish the legal relationship. This means the father... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections and Contracts for Tennessee on
Q: Customer won't pay for work/parts he authorized abandoned car won't take our call authorized work/parts = 1600 Car = 300

We have an electronic record showing he authorized the work, parts and the costs. He only paid $500 for it and appears to have been trying to "flip" it for profit. It seems he's trying to cut his losses leaving us with labor and parts already paid out on his authorization.

I know how to... Read more »

Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 8, 2019

Under Tennessee law, a repair service has a possessory lien on the vehicle for the cost of repairs- you can retain the vehicle until he pays for the work. At some point, you will need to file suit to collect the debt, and once you have a judgment, you can have the sheriff's office sell the vehicle... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Tennessee on
Q: Would I have to pay for an almost 10 year old water bill, that isn't even on my credit report?
Leonard Robert Grefseng
Leonard Robert Grefseng answered on Oct 4, 2019

The failure to list or report the debt to a credit reporting agency is irrelevant, the real issue is the statute of limitations: the legal deadline for filing suit. Beware; Local utility services are often non-profit agencies, and some have policies against allowing new services to individuals who... Read more »

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