Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Blackaby v. Barnes

Court of Appeals of Kentucky

December 6, 2019

SHAYNE BLACKABY APPELLANT
v.
NANCY BARNES APPELLEE

          APPEAL FROM SHELBY CIRCUIT COURT HONORABLE S. MARIE HELLARD, JUDGE ACTION NO. 18-CI-00486

          BRIEF FOR APPELLANT: Wesley E. Bright Campbellsville, Kentucky

          BRIEF FOR APPELLEE: No brief filed.

          BEFORE: GOODWINE, LAMBERT, AND K. THOMPSON, JUDGES.

          OPINION

          GOODWINE, JUDGE.

         Shayne Blackaby ("Blackaby") appeals from a Shelby Circuit Court order denying his petition for grandparent visitation. Blackaby argues the family court erred in ruling he did not have standing to pursue visitation after Nancy Barnes ("Barnes") adopted K.N.B. After careful review, we affirm.

         BACKGROUND

         K.N.B. was born in 2012 to Timothy Blackaby ("T.B.") and Barnes' unnamed daughter. On February 5, 2016, Barnes petitioned the family court to adopt K.N.B. During the adoption proceedings, Barnes' daughter consented to the adoption, relinquishing her parental rights. However, T.B. contested the adoption and participated in the proceedings through a court-appointed guardian ad litem due to his incarceration.

         On September 22, 2016, T.B. died, but K.N.B.'s adoption proceedings were still ongoing. The family court finalized Barnes' adoption of K.N.B., entering its Amended Judgment of Adoption on October 23, 2017. Nearly one year later, Blackaby, K.N.B.'s paternal grandfather, petitioned the family court for grandparent visitation under KRS[1] 405.021.

         During the adoption proceedings, the family court did not hold a hearing on Blackaby's petition for grandparent visitation. Instead, it ordered the parties to provide memoranda regarding the legal issues by November 19, 2018. Both parties complied with this order. Two months later, the family court entered its findings of fact, conclusions of law, and order denying Blackaby's petition for visitation. Blackaby did not file a motion to alter, amend, or vacate the ruling with the family court. Rather, this appeal followed.

         Before we begin our analysis, we must again address the rules of appellate procedure. Under Kentucky law, CR[2] 73 through CR 76 are the principal rules governing appellate practice in the Kentucky Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. CR 76.12 lays out the briefing criteria to which attorneys must adhere to successfully prepare an appellate brief for our review. A plain reading of the rule indicates strict compliance with its mandates are essential for a litigant's vitality. It warns litigants that "[a] brief may be stricken for failure to comply with any substantial requirement of th[e] [r]ule[.]" CR 76.12(8)(a).

         Moreover, our case law dictates that "[c]ompliance with CR 76.12 is mandatory." Smothers v. Baptist Hosp. E., 468 S.W.3d 878, 881-82 (Ky. App. 2015) (citing Hallis v. Hallis, 328 S.W.3d 694, 696 (Ky. App. 2010)). It explains that we bear no responsibility "to consider portions of the Appellants' brief not in conformity with CR 76.12, and may summarily affirm the trial court on the issues contained therein." Leamon v. Phillips, 423 S.W.3d 759, 762 (Ky. App. 2014) (citing Skaggs v. Assad, By and Through Assad, 712 S.W.2d 947 (Ky. 1986); Pierson v. Coffey, 706 S.W.2d 409 (Ky. App. 1985)).

         But in 1986, our Supreme Court acknowledged the doctrine of substantial compliance, which recognized, reconciled, and furthered "three significant objectives of appellate practice: achieving an orderly appellate process, deciding cases on the merits, and seeing to it that litigants do not needlessly suffer the loss of their constitutional right to appeal." Ready v. Jamison, 705 S.W.2d 479, 482 (Ky. 1986). This doctrine provided our Court with discretion to address and point out latent defects in briefs and allow appeals to proceed based on the merits of the argument, if warranted, or review for palpable error.

         Thus, we address the procedural issue before us in this case. Under CR 76.12(4)(c)(v), an appellant's brief "shall contain at the beginning of the argument a statement with reference to the record showing whether the issue was properly preserved for review and, if so, in what manner." (Emphasis added). Here, Blackaby omits this integral section in his brief. He neither cites to the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.