News

Put TBJ-Reviewed Books on Your Gift List

If you are still looking for a gift for the readers on your list, check out the reviews of two books in the December Journal. Gary Shockley reviews John Dean's book, The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It. The book is based on "transcripts of more than one thousand White House conversations taped by the infamous Nixon taping system — less than half of which had ever been transcribed before," Shockley writes. "Even today, four decades later, the story both fascinates and repels." 

David Wade reviews The Widow Wave: A True Courtroom Drama of Tragedy at Sea. "If you try lawsuits, you will run into yourself on virtually every page of this book," Wade writes. "This book is a great excursion into a real trial wrapped into all the trappings of real trial lawyers who, even though they are at the height of their professional acumen, still agonize over decisions they must make during trial and the impact they will have on the sacred trust to protect the client’s interests. No work of fiction can ever beat that."

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Humor: Haltom Warns About Christmas Tree Discord

If you are going to get your Christmas tree this weekend, read Bill Haltom's column in the December Tennessee Bar Journal first. In it he reveals why divorce lawyers love Christmas trees. "Remember folks, it took a crew of 17 big men at the Christmas tree lot to hoist the tree on top of the van. But once I get home, it’s Daddy’s job to personally lift this giant Sequoia off the minivan and carry it (the tree, not the minivan) into the house," Haltom writes. "My wife and I snipe at each other for hours while I clutch the Christmas tree and experience Yuletide acupuncture, as thousands of pine needles pierce my aching body. After several crash landings, we somehow manage to balance the tree. Of course, by this time, my wife and I are in no mood whatsoever to trim the tree, since we’ve stopped speaking to each other. Talk about Silent Night." Consider yourself warned, everyone, and happy tree decorating.

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Vested Property Rights Act Leads December TBJ

In the December issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal, lawyers Jennifer Lacey and John Williams detail the Vested Property Rights Act of 2014 and how it has given more stability to developers. Bill Rutchow looks at employer protection of confidential business information through the Tennessee Uniform Trade Secrets Act. And in perhaps the best news of all, columnist Eddy Smith reports the demise of Circular 230 Disclosures in "How the IRS Saved the Planet and Returned 30 Minutes of Your Day."

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Convicted 'Stringbean' Killer Paroled Today

John Brown, 64, who admitted to killing Grand Ole Opry and "Hee Haw" comic David "Stringbean" Akeman and his wife Estelle, was released from prison today. Brown, originally sentenced to 198 years, had been denied parole at least a half dozen times. He spent 40 years in prison. On Nov. 11, 1973, Brown and his cousin, Doug Marvin Brown, ransacked the Akemans' cabin on their farm in Ridgetop, but were apparently surprised by the Akemans as they returned home from the Opry. Brown shot Akeman as he walked into the cabin, then ran after his wife and shot her. Newschannel5 has more. In this 2004 Tennessee Bar Journal column, Don Paine wrote about the murders, the investigation and the trial.

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Haltom Looks at the Aging Lawyer in This Month's Column

In 1980, 36 percent of the nation’s licensed lawyers were under age 35, compared to just 13 percent in this age group in 2005, the ABA Journal reports. The figures come from The Lawyer Statistical Report, which is based on data from Martindale-Hubbell and compiled by the American Bar Foundation. Meanwhile, the median lawyer age also increased from 39 in 1980 to 49 in 2005. Tennessee Bar Journal humor columnist Bill Haltom has embraced these statistics, declaring himself and some of his colleagues "Legally Gray." Read his column in this month's issue.

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Blumstein Named Solicitor General

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery today named Andrée Sophia Blumstein as the state’s new solicitor general. She succeeds Acting Solicitor General Joe Whalen, who will return to his previous position in the office. In the new role, Blumstein will oversee appellate litigation in state and federal courts, review written opinions and advise the attorney general. “I could not be more pleased that Andrée has accepted this important appointment,” Slatery said. “Her extensive trial and appellate experience and her academic credentials are surpassed only by the type of person she is and the respect she already enjoys in the legal community.” For the past 21 years, Blumstein has been a partner at the Nashville firm of Sherrard & Roe where she focused on appellate litigation, health law, taxation and antitrust matters.

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Article Details Alexander Hamilton and Pro Bono

To commemorate "Celebrate Pro Bono Month" in the October Tennessee Bar Journal, Russell Fowler details Alexander Hamilton's upbringing and career. Hamilton is the first known American lawyer who performed pro bono on a wide and systematic scale -- he was a pro bono rock star! Also in this issue, Nashville lawyer James G. Thomas reviews Joel Cohen's book Blindfolds Off: Judges on How They Decide.

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Journal Article Explains New Ruling on Summary Judgment Orders

A recent Tennessee Supreme Court opinion holds that an order granting or denying a motion for summary judgment must contain a statement of the legal grounds on which the decision is based and that the statement contained in the order must be the product of the trial court’s own, independent analysis and judgment. The case, Mary C. Smith v. UHS of Lakeside Inc., also provides some significant standards for compliance with this Rule 56.04 “statement-of-legal-grounds” requirement. In the new October Tennessee Bar Journal, Andrée Sophia Blumstein explains.

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Signing Sunday for Book on Howard Baker, Civility

Memphis lawyer Bill Haltom will sign his book, The Other Fellow May Be Right: The Civility of Howard Baker, on Oct. 5 at 2 p.m. at Booksellers of Laurelwood in Memphis. Haltom was the featured speaker today at the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy.

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September Issue Includes Snowden, Funny Downside of Social Media

“The Snowden Files: The Inside Story of the World's Most Wanted Man” is reviewed by Gary Shockley in this month's Tennessee Bar Journal. Humor columnist Bill Haltom, in discussing the downside of all social media, writes (although not Tweeting or posting on Facebook) that he "would like to invent my own form of social media called 'Who Cares Book.'" Read this and more in the September issue.

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Howard Baker Remembered for Civility in Column, Book

Bill Haltom remembers in his monthly Journal column, how the late Sen. Howard Baker advanced the conversation on civility in the law. The column is an excerpt from Haltom's newly released book, The Other Fellow May Be Right: The Civility of Howard Baker.

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Money, Money, Money in August TBJ

In the August Journal, get some pointers on how to "take charge of your own economy" that will help you and your law practice. Also, our columnists cover banking and estate planning: Kathryn Reed Edge gives you the history of money and Eddy Smith explains some new trust options for married clients.

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Mergers, 'Kaley' Ruling, Seersucker and More Covered in July TBJ

Kathryn Reed Edge gives the details of what a merger entails in the July issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal. Enjoy TBA Convention photos and stories in the printed version -- and read new TBA President Jonathan Steen's column, "If Not Us, Then Who?" Wade Davies explains the recent Kaley ruling about criminal defendants using their earnings to retain counsel (spoiler: they can't). And if you are wavering about buying a Seersucker suit this summer, read Bill Haltom's column for a nudge in favor of the cool, cotton ensemble.

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TBA Recognizes 2 Nashville Lawyers for Outstanding Legal Writing

Kimberly Stagg, John E. Anderson Sr. awarded annual honor

NASHVILLE, June 23, 2014 – Nashville lawyers Kimberly Stagg and John E. Anderson Sr. of Dickinson Wright were awarded the Tennessee Bar Association's Justice Joe Henry Award for Outstanding Legal Writing at the association's annual meeting in Gatlinburg.

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Former TBA President, Member of Bar Journal Editorial Board Presented with Lifetime Achievement Award

Honor given posthumously to Knoxville lawyer Don Paine at TBA Convention

NASHVILLE, June 23, 2014 – The Tennessee Bar Association presented The Joe Henry Award for Outstanding Legal Writing Lifetime Achievement Award posthumously to Donald F. Paine at its annual convention in Gatlinburg. Paine is the first recipient of the award, which recognizes the profound contributions he made to the Tennessee Bar Journal and to legal writing in Tennessee.

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Steen New TBA President, Lawyers Recognized

Jackson lawyer Jonathan Steen was installed today as president of the Tennessee Bar Association at the Lawyers Luncheon, part of the group's annual convention in Gatlinburg. "Our founders knew that a strong judicial branch is critical for the health of a democracy," Steen said, and "blatant partisan attacks of late undermine the public's confidence in the judiciary. Lawyers need to be informed and educate their family and friends about these important issues." Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Gary Wade administered the oath of office to Steen, as well as the new members of the TBA Board of Governors. Nashville lawyer Bill Harbison is now president-elect and Knoxville lawyer Jason Long is vice president.

Also at the luncheon, Senior Counselors and these award winners were recognized: The TBA Young Lawyers Division Fellows William M. Leech Public Service Award was given to Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Janice M. Holder by Memphis lawyer Charlotte Knight Griffin. Two awards were given for the Justice Joseph Henry Award for Outstanding Legal Writing. First to Nashville lawyers Kimberly Stagg and John E. Anderson Sr. for their article published in the Tennessee Bar Journal. Second, a Lifetime Acheivement Award was given posthumously to Donald F. Paine for his continuous and important contributions to and shaping of the Journal. The Frank F. Drowota III Outstanding Judicial Service Award was given to Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Gary Wade. Former Chief Justice Drowota was on hand to help present the award. You Tube Video Awards were presented and the winning videos shown. Three President's Awards were given: to Angelia Nystrom, Richard Johnson and Jeff Levy. TBA Sections and Committees Coordinator Lynn Pointer was honored on her retirement from the TBA. Read more and see pictures from the event.

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Steen Takes Office as President, Awards Given at Lawyers Lunch

Lawyers Luncheon 2014

Jackson lawyer Jonathan Steen takes the oath of office from Chief Justice Gary Wade, while a group of former TBA presidents look on.

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Columns Cover Labor Law, Hospice ... and Golf

In his "The Law at Work" column in the June Tennessee Bar Journal, Ward Phillips writes with co-author Brandon Morrow "that courts have not been shy to award substantial fees and costs to employers who have been required to combat frivolous claims." They look at how courts have been increasingly critical of agencies’ “sue first, ask questions later” strategy. In Monica Franklin's "Senior Moments" column, she helps you and your clients know when to choose Hospice and who pays for it, and she explains the new "Medicare Choices Model." Humor columnist Bill Haltom explores the game of golf -- and why he ended up selling his golf clubs at a yard sale.

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June Issue Includes Don Paine's Final Column

The late Don Paine's final column, "The Tennessee Consumer Protection Act," is published in the June Tennessee Bar Journal. Also in the issue, Russell Fowler looks at how Memphis trial courts struggled to stay in business during the Civil War and how they fared during Reconstruction. And the members of the Law Launch Project have graduated and are studying for the bar. Look in on where they are, their job prospects, and their take on how law school went.

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TBJ Columns Cover Electronic Surveillance, 'McCutcheon' and More

Columns in the May Tennessee Bar Journal include electronic surveillance in family law by Marlene Moses and Benjamin Russ; Tenn. Code Ann. §20-1-119 and its relationship with the federal courts by John Day; and the late Don Paine wrote about convicted murderer Paul Dennis Reid Jr. Bill Haltom explains how the "McCutcheon" case makes the phrase "free speech" into an oxymoron.

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May TBJ Looks Into Alternative Careers for Lawyers

A recent study indicates that fewer lawyers are practicing traditional law than ever before. In the May issue, the Tennessee Bar Journal takes a look at some Tennessee lawyers who have chosen career paths that use their law degrees in alternative ways. Also headlining this issue, George Orwell's classic essay on writing and how it can help lawyers and judges communicate more effectively. Read these and more in the May TBJ.

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April Issue Covers UPL, Postjudgment Interest and Sex Week

"Protecting the legal profession is only our secondary goal," Tennessee Bar Association President Cindy Wyrick writes in her Journal column this month where she takes on the war against unauthorized practice of law. "We are fighting this battle primarily to protect the public."  Also in this issue, the second-to-last column written by the late Don Paine is about postjudgment interest, and Bill Haltom writes what's on many Volunteers' minds about the legislature, Sex Week and free speech at UT.

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Divorce, End-of-Life Care and Cybercriminals

In this issue, Helen Rogers and George Spanos outline strategies for the timing of filing for divorce in Tennessee and Eddy R. Smith discusses the painful topic of pregnancy and end-of-life care. If you weren't scared of people stealing your money electronically before, Kathryn Reed Edge's column on cybercriminals will send you running to change all your passwords and tighten your firm security.

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No April Fools: This Issue Really Is Full of Snakes

The Journal covers a slithery subject in the April issue: Knoxville lawyer Joe Jarret writes about poisonous serpents and religious expression in Tennessee. See what else is in the new issue.

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Lawyer Suicide Addressed, 'Paine on Procedure' Continues

In her latest Journal column, Tennessee Bar Association President Cindy Wyrick addresses the subject of lawyer suicide and offers tips about what to say to a colleague who you suspect is suicidal, and what you can do if you find yourself feeling that way. And "Paine on Procedure" continues with another column Don Paine wrote before his death, this one about aggravated rape of a dead victim.

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