Stressful legal profession can lead to alcoholism and substance abuse, TLAP offers help

The American Bar Association estimates that 15 percent to 20 percent of lawyers suffer from alcoholism or substance abuse. To deal with this, the Tennessee Supreme Court established the Tennessese Lawyers Assistance Program in 1999 to help members of the legal profession who suffer from any mental or physical disability that might affect their ability to practice or serve. In today's Memphis Daily News, Andrew Ashby writes about TLAP executive director Robert Albury Jr., the program itself and how it's never too late for recovery.

http://www.memphisdailynews.com/Editorial/StoryFocus.aspx?&id=91981

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. To search all opinions in the TBALink database, go to our OpinionSearch page. If you have forgotten your password or need to obtain a password, you can look it up on TBALink at http://www.tba.org/getpassword.mgi.

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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink

SHEPARD BARBASH v. MONTY R. BRUELL AND ANTHONY SMITH

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

James H. Harris, Nashville, Tennessee, for appellant, Anthony Smith.

James B.M. Hooper, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for appellee.

Judge: HERSCHEL PICKENS FRANKS

Defendant’s Tenn. R. Civ. P. 60 Motion to be relieved of the Trial Court’s Judgment was denied. On appeal, we affirm on the ground that the Motion was untimely filed.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/barbashs030906.pdf

Concurring opinion
http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/barbashsCON030906.pdf


BENEFICIAL TENNESSEE, INC. v. THE METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT, ET AL.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

J. Douglas Sloan, III, John Kennedy, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee.

Richard J. Myers, Forest J. Dorkowski, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Beneficial Tennessee, Inc.

Judge: PATRICIA J. COTTRELL

The trial court held that the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment was violated by sending notice to a mortgagee of an impending tax sale of the mortgaged property by regular mail. We reverse.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/beneficial030906.pdf


TAVARES FORD, On behalf of herself and all other similarly situated

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

D. Frank Davis, John E. Norris, Birmingham, AL; Sheila B. Renfroe, Memphis, TN, for Appellant

Sam B. Blair, Jr., Clinton J. Simpson, Memphis, TN, for Appellee

Judge: ALAN E. HIGHERS

In this appeal, we are asked to determine whether the circuit court erred when it dismissed the appellant’s class action suit based on lack of standing and primary jurisdiction. On appeal, the appellant asserts that she had standing to bring her suit and that the circuit court should not have declined to exercise jurisdiction based on the doctrine of primary jurisdiction. We affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/fordt030906.pdf


JIMMY D. JONES, JR. v. PATRICIA ANN (ELIAS) JONES

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Gregory D. Smith, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Jimmy D. Jones, Jr.

Ted A. Crozier, Jr. and Julia P. North, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Patricia Ann (Elias) Jones.

Judge: SHARON G. LEE

In this divorce case, the issue presented is whether the trial court erred in awarding the wife periodic alimony in the amount of $2,000 per month for three years and “arrearages of temporary back support” in the amount of $9,318. We affirm the judgment of the trial court as to the amount of monthly alimony awarded; however, we modify the award to designate it as rehabilitative alimony rather than periodic alimony. We further hold that there can be no arrearage of temporary spousal support when there was no order prior to the final divorce hearing awarding the wife temporary support. However, we hold that the award to wife of $9,318 in alimony is appropriate, but should be modified to properly classify it as alimony in solido.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/jonesj030906.pdf


ESTATE OF AUDREY MOORE v. NATIONAL HEALTH REALTY, INC. ET AL.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

John B. Curtis, Jr. and Cherie D. Jewell, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellants, National Health Realty, Inc., National Health Corporation; National Healthcare Corporation of Delaware; NHC/Delaware, Inc.; NHC, Inc.’ NHC/OP, L.P.; and NHC Healthcare / Smithville, LLC.

Richard C. May and James R. Embrey, Jr., Knoxville, Tennessee; M. Chad Trammell and Matthew E. Wright, Nashville, Tennessee; and John A. Day and Brandon E. Bass, Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellee, The Estate of Audrey Moore, by Marie Moore Cantrell.

Judge: WILLIAM C. KOCH, JR

We granted this Tenn. R. App. P. 10 application for an extraordinary appeal for the sole purpose of considering whether the trial court erred in permitting the plaintiff to amend its complaint to add six additional defendants after the applicable statute of limitations had expired. The plaintiff relies on the relation-back provisions of Tenn. R. Civ. P. 15.03 to save its claims against the new defendants. We conclude that there was no mistake concerning the identity of the proper parties and that the new defendants had no notice that they would have been named in the suit but for such a mistake as required by Tenn. R. Civ. P. 15.03. Accordingly, we vacate the trial court’s November 15, 2005 order allowing the amendment.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/moorea030906.pdf


IN THE MATTER OF: N.T.B.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

K.D. Johnson, Mountain City, Tennessee for the Appellant, Reba Johnson.

Janie Lindamood, Johnson City, Tennessee for the Appellant, Michael Blevins.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter and Lauren S. Lamberth, Assistant Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.

Judge: D. MICHAEL SWINEY

The State of Tennessee Department of Children’s Services (“the State”) filed a Petition for Temporary Custody of N.T.B. (“the Child”) in July of 2002, alleging, among other things, that the Child was abused and/or dependent and neglected. The Juvenile Court held that the Child was a dependent and neglected child within the meaning of the law and awarded temporary custody of the Child to the State. Reba Johnson (“Mother”) and Michael Blevins (“Father”) appealed the Juvenile Court order to the Circuit Court (“Trial Court”), and the case was tried. After trial, the Trial Court found and held, inter alia, that the Child was a dependent and neglected child within the meaning of the law and that the Child had suffered severe abuse pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. § 37-1-102(b)(21)(A) while in the care of his parents. Mother and Father appeal. We affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/ntb030906.pdf


JIM SOWELL v. LINDA CHRISTY

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Jim Sowell, Dickson, Tennessee, for the appellant, Jim Sowell.

Timothy V. Potter, Dickson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Linda Christy.

Judge: PATRICIA J. COTTRELL

A client lost confidence in the attorney she hired to represent her in a workers’ compensation action after he had put about five hours of effort into her case and before he filed a complaint. She discharged him and subsequently retained another attorney, who filed a complaint on her behalf. The first attorney filed an intervening complaint to protect his right to payment. The second attorney helped the woman settle her claim for about $46,000. After a hearing on the intervening complaint, the trial court granted the first attorney a quantum meruit award of $742.90. The attorney argues on appeal that he is entitled to 20% of his former client’s recovery, pursuant to his contingency contract. Because the court had the authority under the workers’ compensation statute not to approve an unreasonable fee, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/sowellj030906.pdf


RONALD PAUL ALLEN, SR. v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Ronald Paul Allen, Sr., pro se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, the State of Tennessee.

Judge: ALAN E. GLENN

The Petitioner, Ronald Paul Allen, Sr., appeals the lower court’s denial of his petition for post-conviction relief. The State has filed a motion requesting that this Court affirm the trial court pursuant to Rule 20, Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. The petition for post-conviction relief is time-barred. Accordingly, we affirm the trial court’s dismissal.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/allenr030906.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ALBERT FREEMAN COX

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

A. Philip Lomonaco, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Albert Freeman Cox.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; David E. Coenen, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; and John Halstead and Andrea A. Kline, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: JAMES CURWOOD WITT, JR

The defendant, Albert Freeman Cox, appeals from the Knox County Criminal Court’s order affirming the Knox County General Sessions Court’s revocation of his 2004 conviction of driving under the influence (DUI). The record supports the order of revocation, and we affirm the criminal court’s order.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/coxa030906.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. CHARLES HUMPHRIES

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Robert Wilson Jones, District Public Defender; and Tony Brayton, Mary Kathryn Kent, and William Robilio, Assistant Public Defenders, for the appellant, Charles Humphries.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Seth P. Kestner, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Amy Weirich and Jerry Harris, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: JOHN EVERETT WILLIAMS

The defendant, Charles Humphries, was convicted of first degree premeditated murder and aggravated assault (a Class C felony) and received Range II consecutive sentences of life imprisonment and ten years. On appeal, he challenges the sufficiency of the evidence to establish the element of premeditation and the imposition of consecutive sentences. Upon thorough review, we affirm the convictions and sentences of the Shelby County Criminal Court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/humphriesc030906.pdf


CORVACK SHAW v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Gregory Thomas Carman, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Petitioner, Corvack Shaw.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; J. Ross Dyer, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, the State of Tennessee.

Judge: JOHN EVERETT WILLIAMS

The Petitioner, Corvack Shaw, appeals the lower court’s denial of his motion requesting relief from an invalid sentence. The State has filed a motion requesting that this Court affirm the trial court pursuant to Rule 20, Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. The Petitioner has failed to establish his entitlement to relief from an unconstitutional or invalid sentence. Accordingly, we affirm the trial court’s dismissal.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/shawc030906.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JERMEIL RALPH TARTER

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Larry R. Dillow, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellant, Jermeil Tarter.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; and Joseph E. Perrin, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: GARY R. WADE

The defendant, Jermeil Tarter, was convicted of one count of sale of more than .5 grams of cocaine within one thousand feet of a school, one count of delivery of more than .5 grams of cocaine within one thousand feet of a school, and one count of possession of more than .5 grams of cocaine within one thousand feet of a school. The trial court initially merged the convictions for delivery and possession of cocaine into the conviction for the sale of cocaine and then later dismissed the convictions for delivery of cocaine and possession of cocaine. The trial court imposed a Range I sentence of twenty years in the Department of Correction. In this appeal, the defendant asserts that the evidence was insufficient to support the convictions, that the trial court erred by permitting the surveillance tape to be admitted into evidence, and that the trial court erred by permitting the prosecutor to vouch for the truthfulness of the state's witnesses. The state challenges on appeal the trial court's ruling dismissing the conviction for possession of cocaine. The convictions and sentence are affirmed. The judgment of the trial court dismissing the convictions for delivery and possession of cocaine is reversed. The judgment of conviction for sale of more than .5 grams of cocaine is modified to show that the convictions for delivery of more than .5 grams of cocaine and possession of more than .5 grams of cocaine have been merged into one judgment.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/tarterj030906.pdf


MACK TRANSOU v. STATE OF TENNESSEE (CHERRY LINDAMOOD)

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Mack Transou, pro se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Brian C. Johnson, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, the State of Tennessee.

Judge: ALAN E. GLENN

The Petitioner Mack Transou appeals the trial court's denial of his petition for habeas corpus relief. The State has filed a motion requesting that this Court affirm the trial court's denial of relief pursuant to Rule 20, Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. The Petitioner has failed to comply with the procedural requirements for filing a petition for habeas corpus relief and has failed to allege any ground that would render the judgment of conviction void. Accordingly, we grant the State's motion and affirm the judgment of the lower court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2006/transoum030906.pdf


TODAY'S NEWS

Legislative News
Legal News
TBA Member Services

Legislative News
Bill would allow 10 Commandment display
Public buildings could display the 10 Commandments and other historical documents under a proposal in the General Assembly. The measure sponsored by Rep. Matthew Hill, R-Jonesborough, and Sen. Rusty Crowe, R-Johnson City, would allow replicas of "historically significant" documents -- including religious ones -- to be displayed. Both versions of the bills have been assigned to committees. The Commercial-Appeal has the
AP story.
Track legislation of interest to Tennessee attorneys
The TBA Action List tracks bills in the General Assembly that the TBA has a direct interest in. This means it has either initiated the legislation, taken a postiion on the bill or has a policy on the issue. The TBA Watch List is a broader list of bills of interest to the Tennessee legal community.
TBA Bill Tracking Service
Legal News
ABA wants your input on standards for providing civil legal services to poor
The American Bar Association's (ABA) Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants (SCLAID) is requesting public comment on the Proposed Revisions to the ABA Standards for Providers of Civil Legal Services to the Poor. Comments are due March 24. The proposed standards can be found at
abanet.org
L.A.W. celebrates 25 years
The Marion Griffin Chapter of the Lawyers Association for Women will celebrate its 25th anniversary April 20 at Boult, Cummings, Conners & Berry, 100 Division Street, Suite 100, in Nashville. Cocktails will be at 5:30 p.m., and the program will start at 6 p.m. Keynote speaker will be 6th Circuit Judge Martha Craig Daughtrey.  Tickets are $15. RSVP tby April 7 to Melanie Gober Grand at (615) 646-9353 or LAWorg@aol.com

Polygraph's role in confession may come up in trial
Test results from a polygraph cannot be used as evidence in a criminal trial -- on that the law is clear. But what if that failed polygraph leads to a suspect's confession? Chances are, jurors will hear the confession sans any mention of the polygrpah test that led to it. Is that fair? A case set to begin Tuesday will address this issue. Read about it in the
Knoxville News-Sentinel.
Breathalyzer comes under scrutiny
A criminal defense lawyers' group gets together for drinks, their goal to test the credibility of the Breathalyzer machine. Read about it in the
Knoxville News-Sentinel.
TBA Member Services
Save on telecommunications costs
Save on telecomunications costs and upgrade your existing system with the TBA member benefits program from American Communications Services. ACS works with BellSouth and a variety of providers to bring you savings on telecom.
Learn how you can save

 
 
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