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VOL. 125 | NO. 75 | Monday, April 19, 2010

Court Cases Stay Steady in Q1

By Bill Dries

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The caseload for three of the four sets of civil courts in Shelby County remained about the same for the first three months of 2010.

Hospital liens remained a major category in Shelby County Circuit Court filings after emerging as a trend in 2009 caseload numbers, according to The Daily News Online, www.memphisdailynews.com.

Divorces, with and without children, remained the major category of cases in the nine divisions of Circuit Court and the three parts of Chancery Court.

Hospital liens filed by hospitals against patients who have filed health insurance claims was the second highest category of cases in Circuit Court.

Auto accident claims followed in third.

In the fourth quarter of 2009, auto accident claims were second, followed by hospital liens.

In the Chancery filings, workers compensation claims were the second highest category, followed by adoptions.

Breach of contract claims were the second highest category in the fourth quarter of 2009, followed by adoptions.

The business of the two divisions of Probate Court remained consistent from the fourth quarter of last year.

Wills was the largest category, followed by the appointment of administrators, then the appointment of conservators and the appointment of guardians.

Near the end of the quarter, attorney Rhynette Northcross Hurd was appointed by Gov. Phil Bredesen to fill the vacancy in Division 8 of Circuit Court.

The vacancy was created by the retirement of Judge D’Army Bailey in September.

And with the April 1 filing deadline for the Aug. 5 election ballot, Hurd confirmed she will seek election to the full four years left in Bailey’s term of office.

The other two appointees, Circuit Court Judge Lorrie K. Ridder and General Sessions Criminal Court Judge Lee Wilson, also filed to run on the August ballot.

All the candidates face challengers in the nonpartisan countywide elections in August.

Other early second quarter 2010 changes included last week’s White House nomination of attorney Ed Stanton as U.S. attorney for the Western District of Tennessee.

President Barack Obama’s choice of Stanton to be West Tennessee’s chief federal prosecutor goes to the U.S. Senate for confirmation.

Veteran federal prosecutor Larry Laurenzi has been serving as U.S. attorney since David Kustoff resigned from the post in May 2008.

Stanton will oversee all federal government civil and criminal cases in West Tennessee with offices in Memphis and Jackson.

Speculation that Stanton had been chosen began several weeks ago when FBI agents began doing a final round of background checks.

RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 64 87 1,429
MORTGAGES 39 60 1,107
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 6 196
BUILDING PERMITS 0 117 3,173
BANKRUPTCIES 42 84 837
BUSINESS LICENSES 0 2 331
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 0
MARRIAGE LICENSES 0 0 0