July 2017 - Vol. 53, No. 7

The First Case of Temporary Insanity

To be responsible for a crime, the defendant must traditionally have criminal intent, mens rea, a guilty mind. Hence, the accused cannot be punished for an act perpetrated while insane. Sir Edward Coke observed in 1628: “A madman is only punished by his madness.”[1] And as an 1828 British decision declared, “Insanity vitiates all acts.”[2]

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Spousal Annuities

An Old and New Planning Option

Annuities are one of the oldest and most widely used tools for retirement, long-term care, and Medicaid planning Annuities can be thought of as reverse life insurance policies. Where life insurance protects against the risk of death, traditionally annuities were designed to protect against the risk of outliving an individual’s funds.

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The Importance of Being Mentored

Each Generation Has a Lot to Teach … and Learn

I sat surrounded by paperwork, almost, it seemed, up to my ears. My desk was covered. The table behind my desk was covered. Part of the floor was covered. It was my second week working as a trial lawyer in a rural West Tennessee firm, and I was now responsible for answering 20 or so motions in limine filed by Ford Motor Company weeks before the trial of a complex products liability case pending in Memphis.

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Book Review: Broken Scales: Reflections on Injustice

By Joel Cohen | ABA Book Publishing | $29.95 | 288 pages | 2017

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Licensure & Discipline

Administrative Suspensions Online Notice of attorneys suspended for, and reinstated from, administrative violations — including failure to pay the Board of Professional Responsibility fee, file the IOLTA report, comply with continuing legal education requirements and pay the Tennessee professional privilege tax — is now available exclusively on the TBA website.

Visit http://www.tba.org/directory-listing/administrative-suspension-lists to see administrative suspensions imposed since 2006.

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Passages

CLIFFORD JOY HARRISON of Nashville died on May 8. He was 92. Before earning his law degree from Nashville School of Law, Harrison served in World War II, where he flew 35 missions in Europe as a part of the Army Air Corps. Harrison continued his military service in the Air Force reserve and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel, and was later a member of the Middle Tennessee WWII Fighter Pilots Association. He began his professional career at Third National Bank in 1950 and retired as Vice Chairman of the Board.

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Success!

The Tennessee Bar Association has named Nashville lawyer Joycelyn Stevenson as its new executive director. Stevenson fills the position held by Allan F. Ramsaur for 19 years. He continues as the TBA’s executive director emeritus. (Look for a more in-depth story about each of them in an upcoming issue of the Journal.)

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News

NEW LAWS

Tennessee Civil Rights Cold Case Act Signed by Governor 
A bill that would create a legislative committee to study unsolved civil rights cold cases was signed into law by Gov. Bill Haslam on June 6.

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President's Perspective: The Challenges of Change

It’s a time of real change here at the Tennessee Bar Association.

By now, you probably know that our long-time executive director has taken emeritus status, and his successor will be joining us in a matter of days. The lawyer who guided us, seemingly effortlessly, through this change was my predecessor, Jason Long. Of course, he did this on top of the “usual” duties.

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