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Brown v. Swarn

Court of Appeals of North Carolina

January 16, 2018

LAUREN K. BROWN, Plaintiff,
v.
MARQUIS SWARN, Defendant.

          Heard in the Court of Appeals 28 November 2017.

         Appeal by Marquis Swarn from order entered 26 August 2016 by Judge T. Mack Brittain in Transylvania County No. 14-CVD-318 District Court.

          Emily Sutton Dezio for the Plaintiff-Appellee.

          Donald H. Barton, P.C., by Donald H. Barton, for the Defendant-Appellant.

          DILLON, Judge.

         Lauren K. Brown ("Mother") and Marquis Swarn ("Father") are the parents of a minor child, Annie[1]. Father appeals from the trial court's second custody order entered in this matter. We hold that we have jurisdiction over this appeal, notwithstanding that Father noticed his appeal seven months after the second custody order was entered. On the merits, we affirm.

         I. Background

         In June 2014, Mother commenced this action against Father, seeking custody of their child, Annie.

         In April 2015, the trial court entered a Consent Order (the "2015 Consent Order"), setting forth certain custody terms as agreed to by the parties.

         Over the course of the next year, Father allegedly violated the 2015 Consent Order by depriving Mother of some custody time. To address Father's violation, in April 2016, Mother filed a Motion to Show Cause and Modify Custody, in part, to seek additional custody time with Annie to make up for the custody time she had lost.

         In August 2016, the trial court entered a second custody order entitled the Temporary Non-Prejudicial Custody Order (the "2016 Order"). Seven months later, on 13 March 2017, Defendant filed written notice of appeal from the 2016 Order.

         II. Jurisdiction

         Mother makes essentially two arguments challenging our appellate jurisdiction in ...


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