News

New Rules Regarding Sealing Records, Fighting Fake News and More

In the May Tennessee Bar Journal Paul McAdoo writes about recent decisions by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals regarding sealing records -- and what that likely means for the future. Charles L. Baum II explains how to calculate commercial compensatory damages in Tennessee. President Lucian Pera writes about the importance of the “fourth estate,” and a new TBA award honoring courageous reporting on justice and the law. It’s a way to fight fake news, he writes. Nominate someone by May 10. Read the May issue
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This Issue: Estate Planning, Banking and Nathan Bedford Forrest

This month, the Tennessee Bar Journal welcomes the return of columnist Dan Holbrook, who wrote "Where There's a Will" from 2001 to 2012. Holbrook writes with Bradley C. Sagraves about the effects of tax reform on estate planning. Eddy Smith, who has taken a job in another industry, wrote the column for six years, keeping readers informed about updates in estate planning law. Thank you, Eddy and Dan! Also in this issue, banking columnist Kathryn Reed Edge details how to make banking accessible, and our humor columnist Bill Haltom asks: “Where in the world is Nathan Bedford Forrest?" Enjoy the April issue.

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April TBJ: Hospital Lien Law, Hope for the Practice of Law

Hospital liens have become a focus of significant litigation in recent years, with the West case muddying the waters, but Stuart Burkhalter explains in this month's Tennessee Bar Journal how Dedmon clarifies the confusion about use of medical bills and upholding the collateral source rule. President Lucian Pera is hopeful about the practice of law among all the change and uncertainty that is happening. He writes in his column that no single result is inevitable, and "that should give us hope.” Rachel Roberson writes about recent evidence regarding nonparent visitation when it comes to the child’s best interests in divorce cases. Read the April issue.

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ICYMI: Video Snapshots TBJ Issue on Evolving Legal Markets

In case you missed it, this month's Tennessee Bar Journal is all about evolving legal markets and how technology plays a role in the practice of law. University of Tennessee Law Professor Ben Barton, who served as the issue's guest editor, talks with Tennessee Bar Association President Lucian Pera in this short video about what you can expect from the issue. There is some fun involved here, so check it out.

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Last Weekend Before TBJ's Fiction Contest Deadline

The deadline for the Tennessee Bar Journal's Fiction Contest is Monday, following a weekend with one less hour in it because of Daylight Savings Time. With the loss of that probably-critical hour, the deadline is extended by one hour to 1 a.m. Central time on Tuesday. Does that help? Send it in!

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Crime, History and Humor Also in Special Issue on Evolving Legal Markets and Technology

The March Tennessee Bar Journal includes columns on criminal law, history and humor. Knoxville lawyer Wade Davies asks if a defendant should testify, looking into any research about it. Chattanooga lawyer Russell Fowler takes us back in time to the 1800s when William B. Turley, "the most brilliant judge we ever had," was on the Tennessee Supreme Court. Memphis lawyer Bill Haltom writes about an interaction that Sen. Howard Baker had with his father-in-law, Sen. Everett Dirksen. It is a lesson that is even more applicable today. This issue, the Special Issue on Evolving Legal Markets and Technology, is also packed with information examining the present and future of technology and how it affects law practice. You're going to need to know about what's happening now and what's coming.

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Deadline for TBJ's Fiction Contest March 12

There's still time to enter the Tennessee Bar Journal's Second Annual Fiction Contest. We know that in your real job you don't get to make stuff up, so now is your chance to be loose with the facts and write wildly creatively. The winning entry will be published in the June 2018 issue of the Journal, and the author will receive a $100 gift card from a favorite independent bookstore. The deadline for entries is March 12, so get to typing!

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Special Issue on Evolving Legal Markets: The Future of Law Practice

“Should we have a rule banning lawyer discrimination and harassment?” President Lucian Pera asks and answers this in his column in the March Journal, urging lawyers to study the issue and comment to the court on proposed Supreme Court Rule 8.4(g) banning discrimination and harassment. This issue, the Special Issue on Evolving Legal Markets and Technology, is packed with information examining the present and future of technology and how it affects law practice. University of Tennessee College of Law Professor Ben Barton is the guest editor who collected these tales of new models of lawyering and business incorporating technologies, Blockchain, how to get more value from the same amount of time, artificial intelligence – and more.

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Just 1 Month Left to Enter TBJ's 2nd Annual Fiction Contest

There's still time to enter the Tennessee Bar Journal'Second Annual Fiction Contest! We know that in your real job you don't get to make stuff up, so now is your chance to be loose with the facts and write wildly creatively. The winning entry will be published in the June 2018 issue of the Journal, and the author will receive a $100 gift card from a favorite independent bookstore. The deadline for entries is March 12, so get to typing!

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Whoops: Missing Pages in Limited TBJs

Because of a printing press error, a very small number of the February Tennessee Bar Journals were delivered with duplicate or missing pages. If you received an incomplete issue and would like one that is complete, please contact Publications Coordinator Landry Butler. You can also see the full issue online. The Journal regrets this inconvenience to readers.

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New TBJ: Adverse Legal Authority, #MeToo, a Lewie Donelson Tribute and More

The February Tennessee Bar Journal has a lot packed into it, including an article by Nashville lawyer David Hudson Jr. about the duty to disclose adverse legal authority. Chattanooga lawyer Russell Fowler details the life of Tennessee lawyer and American President James K. Polk and Knoxville lawyers Edward Phillips and Brandon Morrow take an employment law look at the Faragher-Ellerth framework in the #MeToo Era. Learn from Knoxville lawyer Monica Franklin what it takes to be an elder law attorney, read a book review by Jackson attorney Mary Jo Middlebrooks of The Fight to Vote, as well as a touching tribute to Lewie Donelson, by Memphis lawyer Bill Haltom.

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How Will the New Tax Law Affect Lawyers and Firms?

How will the new tax law affect lawyers and law firms? The answer is still developing and in the February issue of the Journal, Nashville lawyer Rob Breunig gives an overview of what to expect and where you can look for ongoing updates. And TBA President Lucian T. Pera writes to encourage lawyers to run for office, announcing the upcoming inaugural 2018 TBA Public Service Academy. “We’re committed to strict non-partisanship,” he writes. “Having more lawyers in public office, and in the legislature, is good for lawmaking, good for the profession, and good for the public.”

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Dog Bites, Alimony Deductions and a New Superhero

The January Tennessee Bar Journal carries a full slate of legal information from our columnists, ranging from a column covering the law regarding dog bites by John A. Day, to the elimination of alimony deductions by Marlene Eskind Moses and Manuel Benjamin Russ; and Bill Haltom's thoughts on the possibilities for a new superhero: Super Spiderman Batman Lawyer.

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What Indigent Representation Reform Is, Why it Matters

"We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put indigent representation on a path to real and lasting reform," TBA President Lucian Pera writes his January Tennessee Bar Journal column. "Reform matters especially to us as lawyers because of the special commitment we all made in the admission oath we each swore. It also matters especially to us because the system won’t work without the full participation of lawyers. [This] depends in part on the system’s fair compensation of lawyers who accept appointments to represent the indigent." Pera asks lawyers to help achieve reforms mapped out by the Supreme Court. The magazine delves into the subject in an article by Elizabeth Slagle Todaro, and focuses on other access to justice areas, too, with updates on initiatives, innovations through Equal Justice Works fellowships and features on this year's public service award honorees.

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December Issue Covers Pirates, Trusts, Banks and Shopping for Toys

Glasby's Fortune by Brentwood lawyer James H. Drescher, a novel about a pirate, is reviewed by the Tennessee Bar Journal's resident "pirate law scholar" Russell Fowler in the December issue. Columnist Eddy R. Smith asks if most trusts should last indefinitely, and Kathryn Reed Edge explains the phases of banking law: good economic times, recessionary times ... and "wedding season." Humor columnist Bill Haltom reminisces over Christmases Past. The bankruptcy of Toys 'R' Us has him feeling guilty for not shopping there anymore now that his kids are grown.

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New TBJ: How the 38-Year 'Geier' Case Changed Higher Education

Follow the 38-year legal battle to secure educational opportunity for African-Americans in Tennessee's public colleges and universities, in this issue. Written by C.A. Gonzalez, who was the mediator and court's monitor in the case, the article explains all the twists, turns and intrigue of the famous Geier case that changed everything. Also, TBA President Lucian T. Pera explains what he sees as a market failure for lawyers as well as what the solutions could be. In a feature article, Tennessee's 1865 Constitution and "the return of civil government" is examined by former TBA President Sam D. Elliott. Read the December Tennessee Bar Journal.

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Employment, Elder Law are Column Topics in Current TBJ

Columnists in this month's Tennessee Bar Journal cover a variety of topics. Edward Phillips and Brandon Morrow take on public employers and the battle over gun rights; Monica Franklin surveys services and rights for seniors; and Bill Haltom's shares his take on women in the courtroom. Read the October issue.

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Robertson Celebrates 30 Years Service as TBJ Editor

Tennessee Bar Journal editor Suzanne Craig Robertson today celebrated 30 years of service to the TBA. "For decades, the Tennessee Bar Journal has been the finest bar publication in the country," TBA President Lucian Pera said. "And, much as I love our editorial board members and authors — I've been in both camps — I bet they'd all agree with me that the most important reason is Suzanne Robertson. Even though many don't know it, the entire Tennessee legal community owes an immense debt of gratitude for her service." Robertson also received congratulations from her colleagues at the National Association of Bar Executives' Communication Section, which is meeting this week in St. Louis. The group has named the Journal best in the country several times during her tenure. 

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October TBJ: The Scandalous Start of Tennessee's Written Bar Exam

The October Tennessee Bar Journal documents a time when just about anyone could practice law with little or no formal training. Lewis Laska writes about a "fake law school" that sold degrees, one of the factors that propelled the legal community to work toward uniformity, education and a written bar exam as standards to practice law. President Lucian Pera tells about lawyers' efforts in the wake of recent hurricanes, as well as ways you can help. Scott Ross gives an update on injury damages under Tennessee law. Russell Fowler shows how Louis Brandeis promoted the idea of pro bono — which is fitting because October is "Celebrate Pro Bono Month!"

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August Columns Laser in On Technologies

Don't miss the columns this month in the August Journal, offering various takes on new technologies. Knoxville lawyer Eddy Smith explains how to plan for and administer digital assets in the estate planning process. Nashville lawyer Kathryn Reed Edge explains "fintech" companies -- firms "that use new technology and innovation with available resources in order to compete in the marketplace of traditional financial institutions and intermediaries in the delivery of financial services." If your head is not spinning after that, read Memphis lawyer Bill Haltom's take on a lawsuit where at issue is laser sensor technology used in driverless cars. The suit is between Google and Uber and it's "shaping up to be a huge legal battle. And there is no one in the driver’s seat."

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TBJ August Issue Features Fiction Contest Winners

The Journal has never published fiction before and certainly not an eerie story about an inmate who is the subject of an experimental drug program designed to keep him alive long enough to serve consecutive sentences -- 100 years for murder, in this case. But in its First Annual Fiction Competition, that's what the winning entry, "The Sentence," is about. It was written by Kristi Wilcox Arth, an attorney with Bradley in Nashville. D. Adam Moore, who is with Pinnacle Financial Partners in Knoxville, earned an Honorable Mention in the contest. Both stories are published in this issue. The submission period for next year's contest will be Jan. 12 through March 12, 2018, so start thinking about what you are going to write. Also in this issue, more fiction by lawyers and judges, as Reelfoot Killins’ by the Hon. Joe G. Riley is reviewed by Covington lawyer J. Houston Gordon.

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August Issue: Meet TBA's New Executive Director

The August TBJ features the Tennessee Bar Association’s new executive director, Joycelyn Stevenson, as she steps into the role held for nearly 20 years by Allan Ramsaur, who is now executive director emeritus. Read about what makes her perfect for the job, as well as what her plans and dreams are for the association. In his column, President Lucian T. Pera asks readers to consider the possibilities that the changing market for legal services will bring. "Today we can visualize a time in Tennessee when 'going to court' might not mean walking to the courthouse on court square," he writes. "It might mean firing up your tablet and logging in to an online session with a judge, other lawyers, and even witnesses." Pera writes about Modria and companies like it, that provide online dispute resolution services, and what that and related technologies may mean for the practice of law.

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July Columns: Bitcoin, Temporary Insanity and the President's Tweets

Bitcoin is a virtual currency that appears to be favored by cybercriminals, Knoxville lawyer Wade Davies writes in his July Tennessee Bar Journal column. There are fascinating cases involving the use of Bitcoin, but because the cases were solved, Davies points out that "Bitcoin isn’t foolproof for the criminal." Chattanooga lawyer Russell Fowler writes about the first case of temporary insanity. He writes that the insanity defense is especially unpopular when it is based on so-called “temporary insanity.” But in the first case when this plea was used, "people rejoiced in the streets when the defendant was acquitted." Nashville lawyer Jim Thomas reviews Broken Scales: Reflections on Injustice, a book by Joel Cohen. Memphis and self-professed non-Tweeting lawyer Bill Haltom asks in his column, "should lawyers vet the president’s Tweets?"

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3 Honored With Joe Henry Award for Journal Articles

Nashville lawyer Benjamin K. Raybin, Memphis Lawyer Amy J. Amundsen and former Nashville attorney Jeffrey L. Levy were honored on Friday with the Justice Joseph W. Henry Memorial Award for Outstanding Legal Writing at the Tennessee Bar Association’s annual Convention in Kingsport. The award is given each year to a member of the TBA who contributes the most outstanding article to the Tennessee Bar Journal. Raybin won for his article “Pardon Me: How Executive Clemency Works in Tennessee (and How It Doesn’t),” published in August 2016, and Amundsen and Levy were honored for their point/counterpoint articles, “Confusion / Clarity: Two Family Law Attorneys on How to Balance Best Interests of Children and Doctor-Patient Privilege,” published in May 2016.
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Defending Trade Secrets, Jason Long's Last President's Column and More in June Bar Journal

Read about the Federal Defend Trade Secrets Act from Nashville lawyer Andrew B. Campbell in the June issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal, out today. Jason R. Smith explains the dangers of plea agreements that provide for concurrent Tennessee and federal sentences. In his last column of his term, Tennessee Bar Association President Jason Long tells the secret of his presidential success as he thanks the TBA staff members who have been instrumental to his year.

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