Supreme Court Rules Investor Lawsuit Can Continue In Tennessee Courts

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Tennessee Supreme Court unanimously decided Tuesday that a lawsuit filed by an investor against a Tennessee movie start-up company could proceed in state court.

The case involves a lawsuit first filed in a California state court by Jeffrey R. Cooper against Phillip, Richard and David Glasser, claiming that they misrepresented facts to induce Mr. Cooper to invest $500,000 in their production company, Hi-Def Entertainment.

Richard Glasser moved to dismiss the suit because a portion of the contract stated that any conflicts had to be resolved in a court in Williamson or Davidson counties. Mr. Cooper voluntarily dismissed the suit and filed it in federal court in Middle Tennessee, including both federal and state claims. Then defendant Phillip Glasser moved to dismiss the suit because the deadline for filing Mr. Cooper’s federal claims had passed. Mr. Cooper again voluntarily dismissed the suit.

Mr. Cooper next filed an action in Tennessee state court on several claims that were included in both earlier suits. The defendants sought a judgment in the case based on a federal rule that precludes proceeding on a claim after two voluntary dismissals. Mr. Cooper argued that he relied on Tennessee’s rule that allows for three dismissals before barring a claim.

The Tennessee Supreme Court addressed whether state or federal law controlled in this instance. The Court determined that the voluntary federal dismissals did not decide the case on the merits and that the claims were still viable in Tennessee. Tennessee procedural rules allow for a case to be dismissed two times “without prejudice.”

“Moreover, we find no discernible reason why permitting Mr. Cooper to pursue his claims in our courts would be incompatible with federal interests,’” wrote Justice Janice M. Holder.

To read the unanimous opinion in Jeffrey R. Cooper v. Phillip Glasser et al., authored by Justice Holder, visit the Opinions section of TNCourts.gov


Attorneys Batts And Taylor Elected To Lead State Drug Court Association

The Tennessee Association of Drug Court Professionals has elected attorneys Kevin Batts and Richard Taylor to leadership positions in the statewide group. Mr. Batts will serve as president and Mr. Taylor will serve as vice president of the association in 2015. Mr. Batts is director of the Drug Court in the 23rd Judicial District, serving five counties of Middle Tennessee. He ... (click for more)

Karen Tindell And Kelly Still Join Southern Community Bank

Robert Stahl, Chattanooga city president of Southern Community Bank, announced Karen Tindell and Kelly Still have joined the Chattanooga branch. “Karen joins the staff as assistant vice president and Kelly joins the staff as a commercial lender,” said Mr. Stahl.  “Together Karen and Kelly collectively have over 50 years’ experience in the financial industry with regional ... (click for more)

2 Suspects Sought In Armed Robbery At Highway 153 Long John Silver's

Police are searching for two suspects in an armed robbery that happened Friday morning. At approximately  8:10  a.m. the Chattanooga Police Department responded to 5317 Highway 153 for a robbery at the Long John Silver's.  Officers discovered that two black men, wearing hoodies and masks, entered the Long John Silver's and forced the assistant manager ... (click for more)

Pair Charged With Beating Man With Stick, Taking His Wallet

Two men are charged with beating a man with a large stick while he slept on the steps of a downtown church, then taking his wallet. Jerry Quincy Allen, 45, and James Leo Boas, 40, both of 727 E. 11th St., are charged with aggravated robbery. In the incident on Wednesday, Bradley Casehart said he and a friend were asleep at Tompkin Chapel Church on Palmetto Street. He ... (click for more)

Please Don't Close The Piccadilly Cafeteria At Hamilton Place - And Response

Oh, no. The Piccadilly Cafeteria at Hamilton Place is closing.  Its last day is Christmas Eve.  I will miss the great food they have there but most of all I will miss their servers, cashiers and waitresses.  They are all so friendly and accommodating.  They make it like it’s a home-style restaurant. I sure wish there was some way that Hamilton Place and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘Scrooge’ Of The Year

As we move into the last weekend before Christmas, the “Scrooge of the Year” has just appeared in Aurora, Ill. Actually Connie Ley has just died. She passed away on Nov. 25, but in her wake left the worst will many around the country have ever heard – her last wishes included that her nine-year-old dog should be put to death, cremated, and buried with her. Bela, a beautiful German ... (click for more)