(a) At any time before defense made, the defendant may apply to the court to substitute in the defendant’s place any person not already a party, who claims the money or property in suit, by filing an affidavit, stating the facts on which the person founds the application, showing that the right in the subject matter in controversy is in the third person; that the affiant has no interest in the suit, and may be exposed to the claim of two (2) or more adverse parties, denying all collusion with the party sought to be substituted, and proffering to pay the money or deliver the property into the custody of the court.
(b) If, on notice to the plaintiff and the person sought to be substituted as defendant, sufficient cause is shown, the court may order the substitution and discharge the original defendant from liability to either party, and make such disposition, pending the suit, of the fund or property in controversy, as to secure the money, property or its value to the party who shall prove to be entitled.
[Code 1858, § 2800 (deriv. Acts 1857-1858, ch. 56, § 1); Shan., § 4497; Code 1932, § 8624; impl. am. Acts 1979, ch. 68, § 3; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), § 20-117.]