LLCs Now Can Be Formed Online

The Secretary of State's office now offers an online limited liability company formation tool, the Nashville Business Journal reports. Users may now complete the required paperwork to file the necessary formation or registration documents and pay from their computers. Form or register a new business with the Secretary of State here

Today's Opinions

Click on the category of your choice to view summaries of today’s opinions from that court, or other body. A link at the end of each case summary will let you download the full opinion in PDF format.

01 - TN Supreme Court
00 - TN Workers Comp Appeals
00 - TN Supreme Court - Rules
04 - TN Court of Appeals
01 - TN Court of Criminal Appeals
00 - TN Attorney General Opinions
00 - Judicial Ethics Opinions
00 - Formal Ethics Opinions - BPR
00 - TN Supreme Court - Disciplinary Orders

You can obtain full-text versions of the opinions two ways. We recommend that you download the Opinions to your computer and then open them from there. 1) Click the URL at end of each Opinion paragraph below. This should give you the option to download the original document. If not, you may need to right-click on the URL to get the option to save the file to your computer.

TN Supreme Court


Court: TN Supreme Court

TN Court of Appeals


Court: TN Court of Appeals


B. Jeffery Harmon, District Public Defender; and Robert G. Morgan, Assistant Public Defender; Jasper, Tennessee, for the appellant, Allen Kelley.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence E. Lutz, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee, State of Tennessee.


This is an appeal from the dismissal of Appellant/juvenile’s appeal of the juvenile court’s determination of delinquency to the circuit court pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated Section 37-1-159. While the appeal was pending, Appellant ran away from the group home, where he had been ordered to live. Appellee Department of Children’s Services filed a motion to dismiss the appeal. The circuit court determined that the appeal should be dismissed based upon application of the fugitive disentitlement doctrine. The court further determined that Appellant had capacity, under the Rule of Sevens, to be held responsible for his actions. Discerning no error, we affirm.


Court: TN Court of Appeals


Patrick Brocklin Parks, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Leon Terry Marshall.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; William E. Young, Solicitor General; and Eugenie B. Whitesell; for the appellees, Civil Service Commission of the State of Tennessee and the Tennessee Department of Safety.


Pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 4-5-322, a former Tennessee State Trooper appeals the chancery court’s judgment affirming the Tennessee Civil Service Commission’s decision to terminate his employment. The Commission affirmed the initial order of the Administrative Law Judge, who upheld the Tennessee Department of Safety’s decision to terminate the trooper’s employment for violations of its policies and procedures and for the good of the service pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 8-30-326.1 Discerning no error, we affirm.


Court: TN Court of Appeals


Jeffrey A. Vires, Crossville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Lisa M. S.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, and, Mary Byrd Ferrara, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.


This appeal arises from a dependency and neglect proceeding. The State of Tennessee, Department of Children’s Services (“DCS”) filed a petition against Lisa M. S. (“Mother”) seeking to adjudicate her minor child Wyatt S. (“the Child”), born in March of 1998, dependent and neglected. The petition was rooted in the Child’s disclosures that Mother had sexually abused him. The juvenile court found the Child dependent and neglected. Mother appealed to the Circuit Court for Cumberland County (“the Trial Court”) for a de novo hearing. The Trial Court found the Child dependent and neglected by clear and convincing evidence. The Trial Court also specifically found severe child abuse in this case. Mother appeals to this Court. We affirm the judgment of the Trial Court in its entirety.


Court: TN Court of Appeals


Sherif Guindi, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kimberly M.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; and Joshua Davis Baker, Assistant Attorney General for the appellee, State of Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.


The State of Tennessee Department of Children’s Services (“DCS”) filed a petition in February of 2009 seeking to terminate the parental rights of Kimberly M. (“Mother”) to the minor children, Zacharias T.M., Isaiah K.M., Ashley M.M., Chelsea M.M., Sierra C.M., and Brittany N.M. (“the Children”). After a trial, the Juvenile Court terminated the parental rights of Mother to the Children after finding that grounds for termination pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. § 36-1-113(g)(1) and (g)(3) and Tenn. Code Ann. § 36-1-102(1)(A)(ii) had been proven by clear and convincing evidence, and that clear and convincing evidence had been shown that it was in the Children’s best interest for Mother’s parental rights to be terminated. Mother appeals to this Court. We affirm.

TN Court of Criminal Appeals


Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals


Robin Ruben Flores, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Theodore Locklin.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Jeffrey D. Zentner, Senior Counsel; William H. Cox, III, District Attorney General; and Cameron Williams, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant, Theodore Locklin, appeals the Hamilton County Criminal Court’s order revoking his probation for aggravated burglary, a Class C felony, and ordering his six-year sentence into execution. On appeal, the Defendant contends that the evidence is insufficient to revoke his probation. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.

A Judge's Power Can Be Used for Good or Bad

A column in the Mountain Press compares the actions of former judge Richard Baumgartner and Sevier County Circuit Judge Rex Henry Ogle. Baumgartner's poor choices are well-known and editor Stan Voit calls them disgraceful. But he also writes about a recent action by Ogle that honored the judiciary when he took a course in a case that was the right thing, but likely not the politically popular choice. "Each shows both the power of a judge and the abuse of power that can result from a bad judge, and how critically important it is to have honest and conscientious people sitting on the bench," Voit writes. "Sometimes doing what is right takes courage."

Jackson's Drug Court Praised

In an editorial, the Jackson Sun praises Jackson City Court Judge Blake Anderson and staff members of the city's Drug Treatment Court. The court, established 10 years ago, has seen 95 individuals complete the program, nine of whom graduated last week. The paper says that nationwide, 75 percent of graduates remain drug free after two years. This reduces crime, and for every $1 invested in the program, taxpayers save as much as $3.36 in avoided criminal justice costs. Jackson's intensive year-long program, the paper writes, "goes far beyond the routines of the criminal justice system by offering an alternative to jail time for those who commit non-violent criminal offenses and drug-related crimes."

Editorial: Haslam Made Right Decision on Open Records

The Leaf-Chronicle praises Gov. Bill Haslam for his recent decision not to make major changes in how open-records requests are handled, saying that "he has set the right tone for his administration to fully cooperate with open-records requests." Read the editorial

Anonymous Speech at Issue in Memphis Case

The Shelby County Commission continues to press for a court order requiring the Memphis Commercial Appeal to reveal the identity of readers who posted more than 9,000 comments on its website. The First Amendment Center weighs in on the request "that raises serious questions about First Amendment protections and the privacy rights of those who posted to the site anonymously."

FTC Names New Acting GC as Tom Resigns

Federal Trade Commission general counsel Willard Tom has stepped down to rejoin the private sector, and David Shonka, the FTC's principal deputy general counsel, will serve as acting general counsel, the agency announced today. In addition, the Blog of Legal Times reports, FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said that Peter Miller will serve as the FTC's chief privacy officer.

Voter ID Problems Few, But Critics Continue Fight

State Election Coordinator Mark Goins says the voter hotline received hundreds of calls on election day, but that only two were related to photo IDs. There are skeptics, however, who believe that the state's 2011 law requiring a photo ID to vote discouraged some people from voting. Nashville attorney Doug Johnston, whose firm is challenging the law in Tennessee's Supreme Court, says even a few is too many. In Hamilton County, 13 voters had to cast provisional ballots because they lacked photo ID, according to the county election commission. The Times Free Press reports

Campaign Spending Record High After Citizens United

Gene Policinski, vice president and executive director of the First Amendment Center, looks at spending in this first presidential election since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission. He writes that the total cost of the 2012 elections is estimated at $6 billion, which would make it the most expensive election in U.S. history. "Finding the right speech-spending balance also pits two core principles against each other: full exercise of Americans’ protected right to speak loudly on politics and public issues, vs. negating the corrupting influence in elections and government policy that may accompany the presence of “big money,” he writes in the Tennessean. "The results are still out on all of those 2012 election-night questions."

Services Set for Clarksville Lawyer Killed in Police Standoff

Lawyer Todd Hansrote was shot and killed by Clarksville Police Saturday night after he fired a weapon during a three-hour standoff during which police say he was threatening to kill himself and his wife if anyone entered his residence, the Leaf-Chronicle reports. A former gun shop owner, Hansrote practiced law with his wife, Suzette, at their downtown law firm Hansrote & Hansrote. He graduated from the University of Memphis and was admitted to the bar in 1991. Funeral service will be held on Thursday at 2 p.m. at Neal-Tarpley-Parchman Chapel. Burial will be in Greenwood Cemetery. Visitation will be on Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. and Thursday from noon to 2 p.m. Read his obituary


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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.

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