December 28, 2012

Court determines which lender holds priority for the purposes of enforcing a lien against a defaulting developer

CHARLES BLALOCK & SONS, INC. v. FAIRTENN, LLC ET AL. (Tenn. Ct. App. December 27, 2012)

Branch Banking and Trust Company (“BB&T”) provided financing for a construction project and recorded a deed of trust. The excavation contractor, Charles Blalock & Sons, Inc., started work on the project and had done substantial work when Marshall & Ilsley Bank (“M&I Bank”) made a loan and recorded its trust deed. BB&T was paid off out of the proceeds of the loan from M&I Bank. Blalock was also paid current with the proceeds from the M&I Bank loan. BB&T released its trust deed.

The developer later defaulted, and Blalock filed this action to enforce its statutory lien. M&I Bank’s assignee, Cay Partners, LLC, filed a counterclaim asserting that it should be entitled to the priority position of BB&T. Blalock and Cay filed competing motions for summary judgment. The trial court granted Blalock’s motion. Cay appeals. We affirm.

Opinion available at: