Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Court examines whether purchasers of property were on inquiry notice of lien against seller

NINA SUH v. RAYMOND GIBBS, ET AL. (Tenn. Ct. App. August 27, 2009)

In this litigation, Nina Suh (the "plaintiff") sued the purchaser of property once owned by Jung Lim Lee to enforce a judgment lien the plaintiff recorded against Jung L. Fowler. Lee and Fowler are the same person. The complaint asks that property identified as lot 6 of Hampton Hall Subdivision, Knoxville, be sold to satisfy the lien. The original defendants were Robert L. Davis, who purchased the property directly from Lee, and Davis' mortgagee, New Century Mortgage. Davis later sold to Raymond Gibbs and Edith Gibbs, who were substituted as defendants in place of Davis. The defendants moved for summary judgment on the ground that the lien recorded against Fowler was ineffective against them since they purchased from a title holder named Lee and the recording did not give them notice of a lien against Lee. The trial court granted summary judgment on the basis of this court's opinions in Young v. RAC Express, Inc., No. E2005-01165-COA-R3-CV, 2006 WL 1699001 (Tenn. Ct. App., filed June 21, 2006) and Gibson v. Flynn, No. 88-120-II, 1988 WL 119257 (Tenn. Ct. App., filed November 10, 1988). The plaintiff appeals. We affirm pursuant to the provisions of Court of Appeals Rule 10.1.

Opinion may be found at the TBA website: