Agricultural Manufacturer Announces Dismissal of Lawsuit

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Tarter Companies, a fourth generation farm and agricultural manufacturing company located in Dunnville, KY, recently made headlines when a lawsuit pitting family member against family member was filed in the United States District Court.

Anna Lou Tarter-Smith and her children, Lou Ann (Tarter) Coffey and Douglas Tarter, filed a suit in the United States District Court against Tarter-Smith’s nephew Joshua D. Tarter in August 2017. The suit alleged that Joshua Tarter, Thomas Gregory, and QMC conspired to use sensitive company information to divert cost savings from the Tarter Companies for their own benefit along with several other vague accusations.

Defendants Joshua Tarter and Thomas Gregory moved to dismiss the case, asserting the plaintiffs lacked standing to bring the claims. On January 22, 2018, U.S. District Judge, Danny C. Reeves agreed with the defendants and dismissed the case and all claims against them. Then again on June 4, 2018, the case was dismissed a 2nd time.

Tarter-Smith and her two children own 50% of Tarter Companies. The remaining 50% is owned by her nephew and Defendant Joshua Tarter, along with his brother and sister.

Recent release of court documents, which can be viewed in Case: 5:18-cv-00379-KKC, seems to confirm that controlling interest of the company was indeed the desired outcome of the plaintiffs. Court documents show that if Joshua Tarter was found liable, he may have been forced to tender his stock to Tarter Companies as restitution. The result being that he and his siblings would no longer have equal control as shareholders. This would leave Tarter-Smith and her children with controlling interest of Tarter Companies. The case has now been dismissed twice by Federal Judge Reeves.

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