CHINA LASHAE SWINT, a minor child, by and through her Guardian ad Litem, SUSANNAH L. BROWN, Plaintiffs,
JOHN DOE, ADMINISTRATOR OF THE ESTATE OF ARON JOHNSON, JR.; LYDIA WILLIAMS, TERRIE COVINGTON; VERDIE MAE DEGREE; SARAH JASCSON; SELMA PHILLIPS; KATIE SARRATT; and DEEGEE HERNDON, Defendants.
in the Court of Appeals 27 February 2019.
by Defendants from order entered 8 June 2018 by Judge
Nathaniel J. Poovey in Catawba County Superior Court No. 16
Law, PLLC, by William E. Morgan, for Plaintiffs.
Law Firm of John C. Hensley, Jr. P.C., by Michael J. Greer,
Lydia Williams, Verdie Mae Degree, Sarah Jackson, Selma
Phillips, and Katie Sarratt (the "Defendants")
appeal from an order granting Plaintiffs' motion for
China Swint, a minor child, commenced this action to
establish that Aron Johnson, Jr., now deceased, was her
father. Ms. Swint seeks to establish the paternity of Mr.
Johnson in this action so that she can assert a right of
inheritance in a pending special proceeding, docket number
15-E-734, regarding the administration of Mr. Johnson's
December 2014, Mr. Johnson passed away, leaving no will. In
2015, within a year of Mr. Johnson's death, the special
proceeding for the administration of his estate referenced
above was commenced. Over the course of the next year,
relatives of Mr. Johnson litigated issues concerning the
proper administration of his estate.
time of Mr. Johnson's death, Ms. Swint was an adolescent
minor. In June 2016, Ms. Swint, through her guardian ad
litem, commenced this present action seeking a judgment
establishing Mr. Johnson's paternity and a declaration
that she is, therefore, entitled to rights of inheritance
under our Intestate Succession Act.
all relatives of Mr. Johnson, answered, denying Ms.
Swint's paternity claim.
Swint and one of the Defendants filed cross-motions for
summary judgment. After a hearing on the matter, Ms.
Swint's motion for summary judgment was granted and the
Defendant's motion for summary judgment was denied.
Defendants timely appealed.
argue that the trial court erred in granting Ms. Swint's