Selection process begins for Court of Appeals seat

The Judicial Selection Commission announced today it would meet soon to begin the process of filling a seat on the Court of Appeals, Middle Division left vacant following the death of Judge William Bryan Cain. Interested candidates should submit an application no later than Oct. 23 at 4:30 p.m. CDT. Find out more about the application and appointment process on the Supreme Court's website:

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Court: TSC


Paul T. Coleman and Vivian L. Crandall, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant Linda S. Rose.

Jennifer E. Raby, Rockwood, Tennessee, for the appellees, Kristin N. Taylor, Edward R. Langley, Phillip M. Langley, and Ethan E. Langley.

Judge: CLARK

We granted permission to appeal in this case to determine whether the decedent's durable power of attorney authorized her attorney-in-fact to change the beneficiary of the decedent's life insurance policy. For the reasons stated below, we conclude that the durable power of attorney authorized the attorney-in-fact to change the beneficiary of the policy. Accordingly, we reverse the judgments of the lower courts; however, because our holding does not resolve all of the issues raised in the pleadings, we remand this case to the trial court for further proceedings.


Court: TWCA


W. Stephen Gardner, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Lehman-Roberts Company.

B. J. Wade, David Riley, and Charles Rye, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellee, Daisy Miller.


This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated section 50-6- 225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The trial court found that the employee died as a result of a compensable occupational disease, silicosis, which was caused by exposure to silica dust in the course of his employment. The court awarded death benefits and specified medical and funeral expenses to employee's widow. The employer has appealed that ruling, contending that the evidence preponderates against the trial court's finding on causation. In the alternative, the employer requests that the case be remanded to the trial court to determine the amount of a set-off, if any, for Social Security old-age insurance benefits in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated section 50-6-207(4)(A)(i)(2005). We affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Court: TCCA


Frank L. Slaughter, Jr., Bristol, Tennessee, for the appellant, Robin Chambers.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Lacy Wilber, Assistant Attorney General; H. Greeley Wells, District Attorney General; and James F. Goodwin and B. Todd Martin, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: MCLIN

The defendant, Robin M. Chambers, pled guilty to twenty-two counts of forgery, Class E felonies, twenty-three counts of identity theft, Class D felonies, three counts of theft of property under $500, Class A misdemeanors, and one count of criminal impersonation, a Class B misdemeanor. The defendant was sentenced to fourteen years and six months in confinement as a Range I, standard offender. The defendant was denied alternative sentencing by the trial court. On appeal, the defendant argues that the trial court erred in denying her alternative sentencing instead of the imposed term of confinement. Following our review of the full record and the applicable law, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.


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Knox Term Limits
Knox jury finds county violated sunshine law
Knox County jurors this afternoon said commissioners violated the Tennessee Open Meetings Act when they decided in secret who would win all 12 term-limited seats left vacant after a state Supreme Court ruling in January. It is now up to Chancellor Daryl R. Fansler to mandate a remedy. The law imposes no criminal sanctions or financial penalties, but the judge could order the panel to make the appointments again.
Read more in the News Sentinel
Supreme Court Report
Will high court swing left?
As the U.S. Supreme Court headed into a new term this week, legal observers were buzzing about whether decisions on a range of hot button topics would continue to tilt to the right or would swing to the left. looks at the debate and previews several contentious cases that may end up angering conservatives.
Read more here
Want to read about the Supreme Court's opening day? reports on argument highlights, offers an unofficial tally of how the justices behaved and picks a quote of the day.
Check it out here
One case the court won't hear is a challenge to the Alabama law that bars the sale of sex toys. Sherri Williams, who owns Pleasures boutiques in two Alabama cities, contends the law violates the right to sexual privacy and her right to free speech, the Associated Press reports. "My motto has been they are going to have to pry this vibrator from my cold, dead hand. I refuse to give up," she said.
The ABA Journal online has more
Legal News
Wyatt Tarrant & Combs acquires Nashville firm
Wyatt Tarrant & Combs today announced it has merged with Hollins & Associates in a bid for a greater share of the Nashville market, the Nashville Post reports. The addition of attorneys Courtney Hollins and Brendi Kaplan brings to 20 the number of lawyers in Nashville with the Louisville-based Wyatt firm.
Read more in the Nashville Post
First music sharing trial tests IP protections
While most of the 26,000 people sued for sharing music files online have settled with the record industry, Jammie Thomas is taking her case to court. She's accused of illegally sharing 1,702 songs and violating song owners' copyrights, but her attorney says the record companies have not proved she shared the songs.
Read about the case in this AP story from the Tennessean
Outsourcing through the eyes of an Indian lawyer
A story in the October ABA Journal explores the growing trend of legal process outsourcing, or LPO, which relies on foreign attorneys to handle document review, contract drafting and other tasks deemed too expensive to handle in house. The article looks at one young woman's experience working for an Indian outsourcing firm, while considering whether the practice exploits foreign labor.
Read more
New crime fighting partnership announced
James R. Dedrick, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee joined with local, state and federal representatives yesterday to unveil a new initiative to disrupt and dismantle illicit drug operations, as well as terrorist and criminal organizations within the state. The plan calls on local governments to work together with direct support from federal and state agencies.
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Disciplinary Actions
Mason lawyer reinstated
On Sept. 11, the law license of James Richard McFall Jr. was reinstated after a five-year suspension and a disability inactive designation. In restoring his license, the court directed McFall to practice within a group setting and work with a practice assistance monitor for three years.
Read the BPR's release
Internet safety forum scheduled for Thursday
Tennessee Attorney General Robert Cooper Jr. will take part in an open forum on child Internet safety at the Nashville Public Library on Thursday. Child safety leaders, government officials and corporate executives are expected to participate in the session, which will offer information for parents, caregivers and teachers. The event begins at 10:30 a.m. and is free and open to the public.

TennBarU CLE
New online course tackles security Interests in intellectual property
Intellectual property is increasingly one of the more important asset classes for modern businesses and a part of almost all funding transactions. However, few lawyers involved in commercial lending are IP experts. A new TennBarU online CLE course from Nashville attorney Kelly Frey of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz can help. You may not become an expert, but learning about the unique aspects of intellectual property in secured lending could be essential to your practice.
Learn more or register now
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