Commission to meet Jan. 24 to pick 3rd court nominee

The Judicial Selection Commission will meet on Jan. 24 to choose the third nominee for the vacant Tennessee Supreme Court position, unless an appropriate court directs it otherwise through an appeal of Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle's recent ruling. The third person recommended by the commission will be one of those who previously submitted an application and went through the interview and public hearing process on Sept. 5. This person will join Judge D'Army Bailey and Judge William C. Koch Jr. as nominees submitted to Gov. Bredesen for appointment.
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Editor-in-Chief, TBALink

AMERICAN STATES INSURANCE COMPANY v. AMERICAN STATES INSURANCE COMPANY

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

William M. Jeter and Michael D. Herrin, Memphis, Tennessee, for Defendant/Appellant American States Insurance Company.

Christopher J. Pittman, Clarksville, Tennessee, for Plaintiff/Appellee Charles Hampton's A-1 Signs, Inc.

Judge: KIRBY

This is an insurance case. The plaintiff installs steel structures that hold billboard signs. On one of the sign structures, the sign fell from its sign pole after installation. An investigation revealed a defective weld between the sign pole and the mounting plate. A subsequent investigation indicated that all sign poles fabricated by a particular sub-contractor had similar defective welds. The plaintiff sued the sub-contractor for breach of contract on 78 structures and obtained a default judgment. The plaintiff then filed the instant lawsuit against the sub-contractor’s liability insurer, alleging that it was liable under the sub-contractor’s commercial general liability policy and umbrella policy. The defendant insurer filed a motion for summary judgment. The trial court granted it in part, narrowing the plaintiff's claim to the sign structures which showed physical damage. After a bench trial, the trial court found there was coverage and entered a judgment in favor of the plaintiff. We reverse, holding that physical damage arising out of and confined to the defective welds performed by the insured is not covered under either the commercial general liability policy or the umbrella policy.

https://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/a1signs_122906.pdf


IN RE R.M.S., A.D.S., AND D.C.S. STATE OF TENNESSEE, DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN'S SERVICES v. MARCY G. ORANGE

Court: TCA

Judge: KIRBY

This is a termination of parental rights case. The three children involved in this action lived with their mother and the mother's boyfriend. The oldest child reported to authorities that the mother's boyfriend had sexually abused her. The State was notified of the allegations, and the mother was ordered to keep the children away from the boyfriend. The mother, however, did not believe her daughter's allegations of abuse, and the boyfriend continued to live with her and the children. Consequently, the children were removed from the mother's home and placed in protective custody. While in State custody, all three children underwent extensive counseling. Eventually, all three reported to their counselors a variety of serious acts of abuse by the mother's boyfriend and by the mother as well. The mother made only minimal attempts to fulfill the requirements of the children's permanency plans and continued to live with the boyfriend. The State filed the instant petition to terminate the mother's parental rights on the grounds of abandonment, failure to comply with the permanency plans, and persistent conditions which led to the children's removal. After a five-day trial, the trial court granted the State's petition on all grounds. The mother now appeals. We affirm, finding that clear and convincing evidence establishes grounds for termination, and that terminating the mother's rights is in the children's best interest.

https://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/orangemg_122906.pdf


KENNETH GEORGE SMITHSON, II v. INGE LORA TAUBITZ SMITHSON

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Aminah M. Collick and Gregory Dye Smith, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kenneth George Smithson, II.

Michael W. Binkley, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Inge Lora Taubitz Smithson.

Judge: CAIN

Husband appeals the parenting plan adopted by the trial court, the award of rehabilitative alimony and attorney's fees, and the award of child support as a result of the divorce granted to Wife. We affirm the adoption of the parenting plan and award of attorney's fees. We modify the rehabilitative alimony award as well as the child support award. The modification of the child support award is in confirmance with the stipulation of the parties on appeal and the appropriate calculations under current child support guidelines. The cause is remanded for further proceedings.

https://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/smithsonk_122906.pdf


TODAY'S NEWS

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Legal News
Roberts first year: Changes come slowly
What trends and accomplishments can we see as John Roberts Jr.'s first term as chief justice comes to an end? The Legal Times offers this review of his tenure, framed by sometimes conflicting goals of collegiality, continuity and change.
Read the full article on Law.com
New ethics rules starting to take effect
The first stage of disclosures required by the state's new ethics law is in effect. The next big step comes on Jan. 31, the deadline for all elected local government officials to file forms listing their sources of income, major investments and other financial information.
Read about it in the Knoxville News Sentinel
Judge makes case for improved jail facilities
Circuit Court Judge Ben W. Hooper makes the case for new jail and court facilities in Cocke County in an interview with the Newport Plain Talk.
Read the full interview
Memphis official pushing for tougher ethics rules
Incoming Memphis City Council chairman Tom Marshall says the first order of business when he takes office in January will be to adopt tougher ethics rules for city leaders.
Read more in the Commercial Appeal
Legislative News
Education, sales taxes to top legislative calendar
What will be the hot issues when the Tennessee General Assembly convenes next month? A Knoxville News Sentinel article says watch for battles on education, cable fees and sales taxes to dominate the headlines.
Read the full article
Upcoming
TBA closed for New Years Day
The offices of the Tennessee Bar Association will be closed Jan. 1 for New Years Day.

Greier to give MLK lecture at Vanderbilt
Rita Geier, a Vanderbilt Law School alumna who was the named plaintiff in desegregation litigation involving Tennessee State University, will deliver the 2007 Martin Luther King Jr. Lecture at Vanderbilt on Jan. 15.
Learn more
Passages
Services pending for Knoxville lawyer
Knoxville lawyer Dennis G. Webb, 53, died Thursday at his home in Norris after a long illness, the Knoxville Bar Association reports. Services will be held at St Francis' Episcopal Church, 158 West Norris Road in Norris, at a time to be announced.

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Online CLE
New courses available on e-discovery, ethics in lawmaking
Several new online video courses are now available from TennBarU, including several ethics courses on the new electronic discovery rules in federal courts and ethics issues regarding work with the legislative and executive branches. Find out about these and more.
Find out about these courses and more

 
 
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