Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Former Public Guardian, Metro in Court Faceoff

By Walter F. Roche Jr

Davidson's former Public Guardian, Jeanan Stuart, and lawyers for Metro are battling each other in a suit brought by a woman who was placed in a conservatorship without her knowledge while recovering from serious head injuries.

In the suit now pending in Davidson Circuit Court Ginger Franklin of Hendersonville has charged that Stuart violated her fiduciary duties by placing her in a group home that didn't suit her needs and then ignoring her pleas to end the conservatorship.

Stuart's lawyers contend their client was acting as a Metro employee and should be protected from any liability under a state law, the Tennessee Governmental Tort Liability Act, limiting the claims that can be filed against a government agency or individual employees.

"She was elected by Metro Council," a recent filing states, adding that she also was issued a Metro employee ID badge and Metro provided her with bond coverage.

Stuart resigned from her post last year simultaneous with an announcement by Probate Judge David "Randy" Kennedy that he would no longer appoint her in any conservatorship cases.

In the Franklin case, Stuart's lawyers filed papers naming Metro government as a  third party defendant. Metro countered charging that the statute of limitations had run out by the time the claim was made and that Stuart's alleged actions fell outside of those that can be protected under governmental immunity.

"Contrary to Metro's assertions the complaint alleges breaches of fiduciary duty for which Metro would be liable," a recent filing by Robyn E. Smith, Stuart's lawyer, states, adding that Stuart should be immune.

"Metro government also gratuitously asserts that the complaint alleges only intentional torts for which it would not be liable," the filing adds.

In its latest filing Metro lawyers state that while they still want the case dismissed, if it does continue that "discovery be limited to ascertaining the employment status of Ms. Stuart."

Citing a prior ruling in the case by Judge Hamilton Gayden, Metro lawyer Jeff Campbell stated in a filing that the court's original decision to deny proceeding under Governmental Tort Liability Act was "correct."

In another filing seeking dismissal of the claims against Metro, government lawyers argued that "absent an allegation of direct negligence on the part of a supervisor of Ms. Stuart, the government maintains its immunity for intentional torts."

Franklin's lawyer, Michael G. Hoskins, in response to Stuart's move to invoke the governmental immunity statute wrote, "The Metro government did not have any authority to direct or supervise defendants actions as conservator."
Full Article & Source:
Former Public Guardian, Metro in Court Faceoff


Finny said...

Looks like Jeanan Mills Stuart is scraping the bottom of the barrel for excuses.

Mary said...

Praying for you, Ginger. God is on your side.

Steve said...

The public guardian sounds desperate!

Anonymous said...

Ginger Franklin: I hope as a result of your suit, Jeanan Mills Stuart is left with nothing - no home, no personal belongings - let her see how it feels.

Barbara said...

I should be more forgiving but I keep thinking of that phrase, "There's a special place in hell for...." I find it very appropriate to what the Public Guardian did just because she could.

Morgan said...

You will prevail, Ginger. Right always does.

B Inberg said...

A prime example by design walls of MUCK to protect themselves from responsibility and accountability while Jeanan Stuart was unjustly enriching herself in the courtroom of the infamous JUDGE RANDY KENNEDY the only probate judge in Davidson County TN.

He will get you while you are alive or dead dolling out the cases to his pals A list gets the big bucks now how does one get on the A list?

Hmmmmmm not hard to figure that one out....connect the dots....$$$....$$$$