IN THE MATTER OF THE ESTATE OF JAMES J. CHANEY, JR., DECEASED: LILLIAN HUNT CHANEY, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EXECUTRIX, AND ALICE ANN CHANEY A/K/A ALICE ANN CHANEY MCCLEOD APPELLANTS
JOSEPHINE CHANEY APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 06/16/2015
COUNTY CHANCERY COURT HON. MITCHELL M. LUNDY JR. JUDGE
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANTS: J. WALKER SIMS FRED M. RIDOLPHI JR.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: DANIEL OWEN LOFTON
GRIFFIS, P.J., ISHEE AND GREENLEE, JJ.
This appeal comes from the probate of the estate of James J.
Chaney Jr. During probate proceedings, a dispute arose as to
whether James's last will and testament had been revoked
by a subsequent divorce and property-settlement agreement. In
the dispute, James's ex-wife and daughter claimed rights
to real property located in Tennessee. James's widow
moved the court to transfer the real property out of the
testate estate. The chancellor determined that the will had
been revoked by implication and granted the motion for
transfer, which led to the real property's distribution
under the laws of intestacy. We find no error and affirm.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
James executed his last will and testament on June 5, 1962.
At that time, he was married to Lillian Hunt Chaney. The will
devised farmland, located in Crockett County, Tennessee, to
Lillian. James and Lillian had one child, Alice Ann Chaney.
James and Lillian were divorced on May 5, 1969. They executed
a joint property- settlement agreement, and in it, they
agreed that Lillian would "relinquish any right or claim
to the farm in Crockett [County], Tennessee."
On December 13, 1971, James married Josephine Chaney. James
and Josephine moved from Memphis, Tennessee, to Olive Branch,
Mississippi, where they lived until James's death on
September 2, 2011. No children were born of this marriage,
and James had only one child - Alice.
On June 22, 2012, Lillian filed a petition to admit
James's purported will to probate in the Chancery Court
of DeSoto County, Mississippi. Josephine contested the
validity of the will and moved to transfer the farmland out
of the testate estate. After a hearing on the motion, the
chancellor issued an opinion, where he applied the factors of
Rasco v. Estate of Rasco, 501 So.2d 421 (Miss.
1987), and found that the will was revoked by implication.
Lillian and Alice filed a posttrial motion to amend the
judgment, to amend findings of fact, and for reconsideration
or a new trial. The motion was denied. Lillian and Alice then
filed their notice of appeal, and this case was deflected to
this Court. This appeal considers two issues - whether the
Chancery Court of DeSoto County lacked subject-matter