August 3, 2001
Volume 7 — Number 142

What follows is the case style or name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion released eletronically today to TBALink.

This Issue (IN THIS ORDER):
 
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
01 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court Workers' Compensation Panel
00 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
03 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Attorney General (PDF format)
00 New Judicial Ethics Opinion(s)
00 New Formal Ethics Opinion(s) from the Board of Professional Responsibility
 

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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink

DENNY CAIN v. WHIRLPOOL CORPORATION, et al.

Court:TSC - Workers Comp Panel

Attorneys:

David T. Hooper, Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellant, Whirlpool
Corporation.

B. Keith Williams, Lebanon, Tennessee, for the appellee, Denny Cain.

Judge: LOSER

First Paragraph:

This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special
Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance
with Tenn. Code Ann. S 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the
Supreme Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law. In this
appeal, the employer insists (1) the trial court erred in admitting
into evidence the testimony of a chiropractor in an action involving a
shoulder injury, (2) the award of permanent partial disability
benefits is excessive and (3) the trial court erred in awarding as
discretionary costs expenses for the taking of the chiropractor's
deposition.  As discussed below, the judgment is modified by reducing
the award of permanent partial disability benefits to one equal to two
and one-half times the clinical impairment rating, but otherwise
affirmed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/caindenny.wpd


WILLIAM CANTRELL v. DeKALB COUNTY, TENNESSEE, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: Michael E. Evans, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, DeKalb County, Tennessee, Brent Russell, Trevor Young, and Kenneth Pack. Richard M. Brooks, Carthage, Tennessee, for the appellee, William Cantrell. Judge: KOCH First Paragraph: This appeal involves two deputy sheriffs' response to a church's complaint that one of its members was disrupting a church assembly. After the deputy sheriffs suggested that he leave the premises, the church member filed a civil rights action in the Circuit Court for DeKalb County alleging that the two deputies had unlawfully detained him and had interfered with his right to practice his religion. The law enforcement officers, asserting qualified immunity, moved for a summary judgment. The trial court denied their motion. We have determined that the trial court erred because the undisputed facts demonstrate that the officers are entitled to qualified immunity because they acted reasonably and did not violate any of the church members' clearly established statutory or constitutional rights. Accordingly, we vacate the order denying the summary judgment and remand the case with directions that it be dismissed. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/cantrellw.wpd
BILLY CONATSER, et al. v. L.D. (JOE) BALL Court:TCA Attorneys: Phillips M. Smalling, Byrdstown, Tennessee, for the appellant, L.D. (Joe) Ball. James P. Romer, Jamestown, Tennessee, for the appellees, Billy Conatser and Pat Conatser. Judge: COTTRELL First Paragraph: This case involves a dispute over the scope of the right of the defendant to use the plaintiffs' property as a means of ingress and egress to various sections of the defendant's property. The deed to defendant's 1,600 acre tract, which surrounds plaintiffs' 151 acre tract on 3 sides, included a 26 foot wide north-south easement over plaintiffs' property. Plaintiffs alleged that defendant refused to confine his activities within the easement, thereby trespassing and committing waste upon their land. The trial court determined that defendant was entitled to use the 26 foot wide easement running in a north and south direction on the Conatsers' property and a second 20 foot wide route of ingress and egress branching off of the 26 foot easement in a northwesterly direction. The court rejected defendant's claim that he was entitled to a third easement along another east and west direction route and awarded plaintiffs $2,500 in damages for trespass. We affirm the trial court's rulings on the scope of defendant's easement and modify the damages to the $5000 originally awarded by the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/conatserb.wpd
JAMES A. HODGE v. JONES HOLDING COMPANY, INC. Court:TCA Attorneys: August C. Winter, Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellant, James A. Hodge. William B. Jakes, III, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Jones Holding Company, Inc. Judge: KOCH First Paragraph: This appeal involves a motorcycle rider who was seriously injured when his motorcycle crossed metal plates covering a portion of the highway surface that was under construction. After voluntarily dismissing his first suit, the rider filed a second suit in the Circuit Court for Lincoln County against the corporation he believed to be responsible for placing the metal plates across the highway. The rider insisted on proceeding against this corporation even after he was informed that he had sued the wrong party. The corporation moved for a directed verdict at the close of the motorcycle rider's case-in-chief, asserting that he had failed to prove that it was responsible for the road construction. The trial court granted the motion and dismissed the rider's complaint. The rider now challenges the directed verdict on two grounds. First, he asserts that he presented enough evidence of the contractor's responsibility for the construction to take the case to the jury. Second, he asserts that the corporation should not be permitted to argue that he sued the wrong party because it had not specifically identified or described this party in its answer as required by Tenn. R. Civ. P. 8.03. We have determined that the corporation's denial of involvement with the construction project at issue was was not asserting an affirmative defense governed by Tenn. R. Civ. P. 8.03 and that the trial court properly granted the directed verdict. Therefore, we affirm the judgment dismissing the motorcycle rider's complaint. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/hodgeja.wpd

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