The Complete Lawyer: What can law schools do better?

Two independent studies on legal education published their findings in March. While employing different methodologies, their recommendations were almost identical: Law schools over-emphasize teaching legal analysis and doctrinal knowledge and virtually ignore teaching professional skills and values. This issue of The Complete Lawyer features articles and interviews from six legal educators who are implementing or planning exciting, innovative programs at law schools.
TODAY'S OPINIONS
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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. 2) Do a key word search in the Search Link area of TBALink. This option will allow you to view and save a plain-text version of the opinion.

JONATHAN PATRICK HAYES v. DEBORAH INGRID HAYES

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

F. Michie Gibson, Jr., Nashville, Tennessee, for Appellant.

James P. Barger, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for Appellee.

Judge: FRANKS

The Trial Court denied the husband Tenn. R. Civ. P. 60.02 relief from a default judgment in the divorce case. We grant a new trial as to equitable division of marital property.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2007/hayesj_090707.pdf


WEYERHAEUSER COMPANY v. LOREN L. CHUMLEY, COMMISSIONER OF REVENUE, STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Michael D. Sontag and Christopher L. Haley, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Weyerhaeuser Company.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General, and Stephen Nunn, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Loren L. Chumley.

Judge: SCOTT

This appeal involves the denial of a claim for the job tax credit, provided in TENN. CODE ANN. Section 67-4-908(1994), by the Commissioner of Revenue. The Appellant acquired the Kingsport Fine Paper and Cut Sheet Plant (Paper Plant) located in Kingsport, Tennessee from the Mead Corporation. The day the Appellant acquired the Paper Plant; the Mead Corporation terminated all 820 of its full-time employees. The following day, the Appellant hired 615 of the former Mead Corporation's employees. The Appellant later claimed the job tax credit, based on the hiring of the 615 former employees of Mead Corporation. The Commissioner of Revenue denied the Appellant's claim, and the trial court affirmed the Commissioner. On appeal, the Appellant claims that the 615 jobs, on which the credits are based, are "net new full-time employee job[s]" pursuant to TENN. CODE ANN. section 67-4-908(b)(2)(A)(1994). We conclude that the 615 jobs are not "net new full time employee job[s]". Therefore, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2007/weyerhaeuser_090707.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. KIMBERLY E. CUNNINGHAM

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Bruce E. Poston, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Kimberly E. Cunningham.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General & Reporter; Leslie E. Price, Assistant Attorney General; Michael E. Flynn, District Attorney General; and Robert Headrick, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WITT

The State of Tennessee tried the defendant, Kimberly E. Cunningham, for the second degree murder of the victim, Coy Hundley, see T.C.A. section 39-13-210 (2006), who was cohabiting with the defendant's sister and fathered the sister's children. A Knox County Criminal Court jury convicted the defendant of voluntary manslaughter. See id. section 39-13-211. The defendant killed the victim because he allegedly raped her youngest daughter. The trial court sentenced the defendant to four years in the Department of Correction. On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the evidence is insufficient to support the conviction of voluntary manslaughter; (2) the trial court erred in denying the defendant judicial diversion; (3) the sentence of four years was too lengthy; (4) the trial court erred in denying probation; and (5) the trial court erred in denying other alternative sentencing. We hold that the evidence is sufficient, and we hold that the trial court neither erred in denying judicial diversion nor erred in denying full probation. However, upon our de novo review of the rehabilitation factor relating to alternative sentencing, we sentence the defendant to serve six months in confinement and the remaining three years and six months on supervised probation. In addition, she must perform 120 hours of community service as a condition of her post-confinement probation.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2007/cunninghamk_090707.pdf


MARTIN E. WALKER v. HOWARD CARLTON, WARDEN

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Martin E. Walker, Mountain City, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Leslie E. Price, Assistant Attorney General; and Anthony Wade Clark, District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: TIPTON

The petitioner appeals from the Johnson County Criminal Court's denying him habeas corpus relief from his 1986 second degree murder conviction and resulting sentence of not less than nor more than twenty-five years. The petitioner essentially contends that the trial court was without jurisdiction (1) to accept his plea and to sentence him without counsel present, (2) to sentence him without designating a release eligibility percentage, and (3) to sentence him under Class X sentencing which had been abolished prior to the sentencing. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2007/walkermartine_090707.pdf


FLOYD "BUTCH" WEBB V. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Keith H. Grant, Dunlap, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Floyd Butch Webb.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; J. Michael Taylor, District Attorney General; William Dunn, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WEDEMEYER

The Petitioner, Floyd "Butch" Webb, appeals the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief claiming he did not receive the effective assistance of counsel. After a thorough review of the record and applicable law, we conclude the Petitioner was denied the effective assistance of counsel in three of his four misdemeanor child abuse convictions (Counts 1, 3, and 4). We also conclude that the Petitioner received the effective assistance of counsel in his convictions for child abuse (Count 2), aggravated sexual battery (Count 7), and two counts of sexual battery (Counts 9 and 11). Accordingly, we affirm in part and reverse in part the post-conviction court's judgment, and we dismiss the Petitioner's convictions in Counts 1, 3, and 4.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2007/webbf_090707.pdf


Community Enhancement Grant Program: Eligibility and Administration

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-09-05

Opinion Number: 07-133

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2007/ag_07-133.pdf

TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
TBA Member Services

Legal News
Anderson named to federal bench in Memphis
President Bush on Thursday nominated U.S. Magistrate Stanley Thomas Anderson to the federal judgeship in the Western District of Tennessee. That seat is now held by U.S. Dist. Judge James D. Todd, who the Commercial Appeal reports is assuming senior status. Anderson, 54, is a graduate of the University of Tennessee at Martin and the University of Memphis School of Law. He was appointed a magistrate judge in 2003, after working in private practice and serving as a commissioner with the Tennessee Department of Transportation and a commissioner on the Tennessee Claims Commission.

Portions of Patriot Act ruled unconstitutional
A federal judge in New York struck down controversial portions of the USA Patriot Act yesterday, ruling them unconstitutional and ordering the FBI to stop its wide use of a warrantless tactic for obtaining e-mail and telephone data from private companies for counterterrorism investigations.
Read more in the Washington Post
Comment on proposed pro se divorce forms
The Tennessee Bar Association is soliciting recommendations regarding its comment on proposed pro se divorce forms and process from the Tennessee Supreme Court Task Force to Study Self Represented Litigants. View this material, which includes a letter from the chair of the Pro Se Task Force on the history around the development of the forms, along with the two sets of forms by following the link below. Send your comments NO LATER THAN FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2007 to TBA Executive Director Allan Ramsaur at aramsaur@tnbar.org
Download the proposed forms
2 attorneys offer free aid to Knox public defender
Knox County Public Defender Mark Stephens has drawn the help of two Chattanooga attorneys who have said they will assist him in his effort to no longer defend cases in misdemeanor court. Hugh Moore and Max Bahner with the Chattanooga firm Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel have agreed to take on, for free, legal representation of Stephens as he turn downs any new misdemeanor cases due to lack of staff.
Read more in the News Sentinel
Dyer Court testing new reporting system
The Dyer County Circuit Court Clerk's office is testing a computer program that eventually may be used by every court clerk's office in Tennessee. The program's goal is to standardize the types of information collected and reported to the Administrative Office of the Courts in Nashville.
Learn more in the Dyersburg Star Gazette
Shelby commissioners cut funding for juvenile court post
The contentious struggle between the Shelby County Commission and Juvenile Court took an unusual twist when commissioners voted to end funding for a public affairs officer, a move court officials called an attempt to "micro-manage." Commissioner Mike Carpenter defended the move, saying he wanted to avoid "spending taxpayer dollars to fund a position whose sole purpose is to disagree with the commission."
The Commercial Appeal has more
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