Hand down list

Mississippi Sand Solutions, LLC v. Bessie Otis, et al. – trespass – Mississippi Sand Solutions (M had been hauling gravel and sand off its
property via a private road on property belonging to the Fisher heirs. At some point, any agreement between the parties ended, and MSS sued in chancery court, asking the chancery court to find that it had an easement over the Fisher heirs’ property. The chancery court ruled
that MSS did not have an easement over the Fisher heirs’ property. MSS appealed that decision, and this Court unanimously affirmed the chancery court’s ruling. Miss. Sand Sols. v. Otis, 248 So. 3d 813 (Miss. 2018). Settlement negotiations between the parties broke down, and the
Fisher heirs demanded that MSS cease and desist traversing their property. The Fisher heirs placed “no trespassing” signs on their property and put up a gate. MSS ignored the signs and tore down the gate. The Fisher heirs reported that MSS was damaging their property by dumping trash and gravel on the property and in waterways on the property. The Fisher heirs sued MSS in the chancery court on August 1, 2017, alleging trespass and asked for a TRO. On August 9, 2017, the Fisher heirs filed a Notice of Hearing, indicating that the hearing on their Emergency Motion for Temporary Restraining Order would be held on August 22. The hearing was continued until October 16, 2017. At the beginning of the October hearing, the trial court specifically stated that “[t]his is a continuation of the first hearing that we had on Wednesday, August the 23rd . . . .” At the end of the continued hearing, the Fisher heirs’ counsel requested damages for trespass and attorneys’ fees. Counsel for MSS responded that they were under the impression they were there only on the TRO. On December 4, 2017, the chancery court found that the requirements for a preliminary injunction were not met, and then it ruled on the merits of the trespass complaint
in favor of the Fisher heirs. It awarded them damages and attorneys’ fees.
MSS appeals, arguing that it was deprived of due process, given that the court issued a final ruling on the merits after a hearing on the emergency preliminary injunction without allowing MSS to defend those claims after having an opportunity to engage in discovery. The MSSC agrees. “Because
Mississippi Sand Solutions did not receive notice that the case was being tried or heard on the merits, this Court reverses the chancery court’s decree on the merits and remands for further proceedings.”