News

California Lawyer Wins Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction

The Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction has been awarded to California attorney Cynthia E. Tobisman, who earned the title for her second published novel, Proof. “The spirit of To Kill A Mockingbird is the spirit of one person’s ability to make the world a little more fair. That the selection committee saw that spirit in my book is something that I will treasure forever,” Tobisman said. The award is given by the ABA Journal and the University of Alabama School of Law each year to a novel-length work of fiction that best that best illuminates the role of lawyers in society and their power to effect change. Earlier this year, Nashville lawyer Chris Kelly earned the top prize in the Tennessee Bar Journal's fiction contest.

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Witnesses, Circuits and Procrastination: TBJ Has It All

In this month's Tennessee Bar Journal, Knoxville lawyer Wade Davies writes about rules for non-sequestered witnesses. "I usually try to write this column about something to which I think I know the answer. I’m not sure about this one," he writes. "Is it still the law that if the prosecuting witness is not sequestered he or she has to testify first?" Read it and see. Chattanooga lawyer Russell Fowler looks at the history of the Circuit Court, starting with judges who rode their horses to make the rounds through the circuits. And we almost didn't get to this one ... bringing back the lost art of procrastination. Memphis lawyer Bill Haltom reminds us that the best counsel is not always the fastest answer. The July TBJ is here.

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New Adoption Law Featured in July TBJ

Discover the changes to the state’s adoption law, outlined in an article by Dawn Coppock and Mike Jennings in the new Tennessee Bar Journal. Newly installed TBA President Jason Pannu writes in his first column about his goals for the year -– and introduces a new feature on wine pairings! Also, did you know that there is a procedure to change the manner of death on a death certificate from “suicide?” Read this personal account by Nashville lawyer Yarnell Beatty, and learn how to assist your clients through this process. Check out the July issue.

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Jason Pannu Sworn-in as President at TBA Convention

Nashville lawyer Jason M. Pannu was sworn in as president of the Tennessee Bar Association today during the TBA’s annual convention in Memphis, with Chief Justice Jeffrey Bivins administering the oath of office. Pannu said his top priorities this year will be Access to Justice, launching the TBA Public Service Academy, and establishing the Uniform Statewide Filing Incubator, which will work to implement electronic court filing statewide. The luncheon also featured recognition of Senior Counselors and the outstanding work of several members throughout the past year: Bob E. Lype was honored with the Justice Joe Henry Award for Outstanding Legal Writing for the best article published in the Tennessee Bar Journal in 2017. Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Cornelia A. Clark was presented with the Justice Frank F. Drowota III Outstanding Judicial Service Award. Memphis attorney Charles F. Newman was honored with this year's prestigious William M. Leech Jr. Public Service Award, presented by the TBA's Young Lawyers Division Fellows. The Leech Award is presented each year to a Tennessee lawyer who has given outstanding service to the legal profession, the legal system and the local community. The TBA’s Fourth Estate Award was given for the first time and was awarded to the News 4 I-Team of WSMV in Nashville. President’s Awards were given to Bill Haltom, Gov. Bill Haslam, Amber Shaw, Gail Vaughn Ashworth, Julie Sandine and Bill Koch. See photos from the event

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June Issue: Title VII, Ageism and the Loss of 2 Legal Icons

In case you missed it, the June Tennessee Bar Journal covers a lot of territory in its columns. Edward Phillips and Brandon Morrow explain "Title VII in Transition," and Monica Franklin and Susie Stiles write "Ageism: It's Time for an Attitude Adjustment." Bill Haltom writes about his dear friends and Tennessee legal icons Frank Drowota and John Waters, who each died in April. Waters was president of the Tennessee Bar Association in 1983-1984, and Drowota served on the Tennessee Supreme Court for 25 years. Haltom shares personal stories about them both, which you will not want to miss.

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Chattanooga Lawyer to Receive Joe Henry Award for Legal Writing

Chattanooga attorney Bob E. Lype will be honored with the Justice Joseph W. Henry Memorial Award for Outstanding Legal Writing at the Tennessee Bar Association’s Annual Convention, held at The Peabody in Memphis this week. The Joe W. Henry Award is given each year to a member of the Tennessee Bar Association who contributes the most outstanding article to the Tennessee Bar Journal. Lype was chosen this year by a panel of judges for “How to Deal with Bullying, Threats and Physical Violence in the Workplace,” which was published in the April 2017 edition. This is Lype’s second time to receive the award – a rare feat in Bar Journal history.
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June Issue Features Ramsaur, Advertising and Fiction Contest Winners

In the June issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal, tribute is paid to the long career of the Tennessee Bar Association's Executive Director Emeritus Allan F. Ramsaur. He steps down after 20 years with the TBA, leaving an impressive legacy, especially with his work in the legislature. Also, read the top two entries in our 2nd Annual Fiction Contest, and get the answers to every question advertising lawyers are asked. TBA President Lucian Pera writes the last installment of his column, reflecting on successes as well as efforts the TBA will continue. Read the Journal online.

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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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