Constitution Day celebrated tomorrow

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Court: TCA


Karla C. Hewitt, Nashville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Christopher D. Dirr.

Mark A. Free, Columbia, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Louise Y. Ledbetter, M.D.


In this post-divorce action, Father appeals the trial court's order on child support obligations and visitation. On review, we have determined that the trial court did not adjudicate the contempt claims of both Father and Mother. Furthermore, the trial court did not fully adjudicate Father's claim to modify his child support obligations. Consequently, we dismiss this matter because the order appealed is not a final judgment.


Court: TCA


Joseph P. Weyant, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Dale and Lauren Stafford.

Mart G. Fendley, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Robert Emberton.


The trial court granted seller's motion for summary judgment on misrepresentation claims arising from the sale of real property based on an "as is" provision agreed upon by the parties. We affirm the summary judgment and find that the seller negated an essential element of the buyers' claims in his affidavit denying knowledge of the alleged defects. Buyer failed to meet his burden to create an issue of fact in any way about seller's knowledge. Alternatively, summary judgment is also sustained as to all the misrepresentation claims based on the "as is" provision, except the fraudulent misrepresentation claim which we find was not properly alleged in the complaint.


Court: TCA


Thomas Nebel, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants Kafiristan Blokes Partnership, d/b/a The Princeton Review of Tennessee, and F. Wade McKinney, Individually and d/b/a The Princeton Review of Tennessee.

John L. Whitfield, Jr., Nashville, Tennessee; William F. Long, Jr., Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellee, Vanderbilt University.


Lessee appeals the trial court's finding on summary judgment that lessor did not violate a provision in their lease whereby lessor agreed to work with lessee to develop acceptable exterior signage. We affirm.


Court: TCA


Mark B. Reagan, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Gary Wynn, d/b/a Wynn Homes, Inc.

Joseph Y. Longmire, Jr., Hendersonville, Tennessee, for the appellee, La Maruja Realty Corporation.

John Ray Phillips, Jr., Gallatin, Tennessee, for the appellees, Delano and Delma McCoury.


This case arose from a complaint for specific performance, brought by a developer against a realtor to compel the realtor to complete the sale of a piece of real property which it had agreed to sell to the developer's corporation. The realtor subsequently discovered that the corporation had been dissolved and moved the court to dismiss the complaint for lack of capacity to contract and lack of standing. The developer applied for and obtained reinstatement of his corporation and then moved the court to be allowed to amend his complaint to name it as an additional plaintiff. The trial court denied the plaintiff's motion to amend his complaint. We granted this interlocutory appeal to review that decision. We reverse the trial court.


Court: TCCA


James A. Simmons, Hendersonville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Wayne Lee Bates.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Lacy Wilber, Assistant Attorney General; Mickey Layne, District Attorney General, and Kenneth A. Shelton, Jr., Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: SMITH

Appellant, Wayne Lee Bates, pled guilty to the first degree murder of Julia Guida and grand larceny. A Coffee County jury imposed a sentence of death. State v. Bates, 804 S.W.2d 868, 891 (Tenn. 1991). For some reason, the trial court never imposed a sentence for grand larceny. After many appeals in both State and Federal courts, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit found the imposition of the death penalty illegal and remanded for resentencing. See Bates v. Bell, 402 F.3d 635 (6 Cir. 2005). Upon remand to the trial court, the parties realized Appellant had never been sentenced for grand larceny. The trial court reduced Appellant's first degree murder sentence to life with possibility of parole and imposed a sentence of four years for the grand larceny conviction, over Appellant's objection. Appellant now appeals solely the imposition of the grand larceny sentence. We conclude that the issue raised is one of whether Appellant was denied his Sixth Amendment right to a speedy trial. After applying a balancing test to the facts, we have concluded that he was not denied his right to a speedy trial and, therefore, we affirm the imposition of the four- year sentence for grand larceny.


Court: TCCA


Edward C. Miller, District Public Defender; and Micaela Burnham, Assistant Public Defender, attorneys for appellant, Catherine C. Huecker.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; James B. Dunn, District Attorney General; and George Ioannides, Assistant District Attorney General, attorneys for appellee, State of Tennessee.


Following the Sevier County Circuit Court's denial of her motion to suppress, the defendant, Catherine Huecker, entered guilty pleas to driving under the influence (DUI), simple possession of a schedule II drug, and possession of drug paraphernalia, all Class A misdemeanors, and received an effective sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days, suspended after the service of five days incarceration. Pursuant to Rule 37(b)(2)(A), the defendant reserved a certified question of law challenging the legality of her detention and the search of her vehicle. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.


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Legal News
Wade lauds judicial selection, encourages pro bono
Speaking to more than 50 attorneys and business leaders at a Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon yesterday, Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Gary Wade expressed support for the state's system of selecting judges saying partisan campaigns can compromise judicial candidates while "keeping [the] judiciary as pure as reasonably possible is the best way to go." He also used the appearance to call for more pro bono involvement by attorneys. Estimating that 70 percent of the one million Tennesseans living at or below the poverty line will need legal counsel at some point in their lives, Wade said more lawyers are needed to give their time.
Read more of his remarks in the Kingsport Times News
AG settles, files suit against notarios
The Tennessee Attorney General has taken action against two notario publico companies for using misleading advertisements aimed at Hispanic immigrants. In many Spanish-speaking countries, notarios are attorneys. In America, however, such businesses only can administer oaths and witness signatures. The attorney general has settled a case with Memphis-based Visa and Immigration Services Assistances, Inc. with the company agreeing to modify its advertisements and pay civil penalties and attorneys' fees. In addition, the attorney general has filed suit against Gelsy Cordero and ABC Linguistics in Cookeville for failing to include in its advertising the required statement that it is not authorized to give legal advice.
The News Sentinel has more
Read the AG's press release
Nashville court clerk fights to clear name
Two years ago, Davidson County Juvenile Court Clerk Vic Lineweaver spent three hours behind bars after being jailed for neglecting to find child support files that went missing for months. Today, with a re-election looming in 2010 and several contenders lining up for his job, Lineweaver is still fighting the charge. His attorney argued the case before the Court of Appeals yesterday, saying the juvenile court was in error when it ruled Lineweaver was in contempt.
The Tennessean has more
Obama DOJ supporting 3 Patriot Act provisions
The Obama Justice Department is supporting renewal of three Patriot Act surveillance provisions left over from the Bush administration. The provisions allow roving wiretaps of suspects who change cell phone numbers, tracking of "lone wolves" who are not part of known terrorism groups, and seizing of personal records. The provisions are set to expire in December.
ABC News reports
Florida law prof uses Dr. Seuss to instruct students
A Florida State University law professor is using Dr. Seuss to make civil procedure more memorable. Professor Elizabeth Chamblee Burch is author of "There's a Pennoyer in My Foyer: Civil Procedure According to Dr. Seuss." The ABA Journal has her poem casting former U.S. Chief Justice Earl Warren as the Grinch Who Stole Thanksgiving from law students.
Or the entire collection of verses can be downloaded here
Legislative News
Judicial pay raise still a priority for lawmakers
After meeting with U.S. congressional leaders Tuesday, Judge Anthony Scirica, chair of the Judicial Conference's executive committee, said lawmakers believe increasing judicial salaries remains a "serious and pressing issue" that deserves attention even at a time of economic woe.
The Blog of Legal Times has more
Law librarian remembered
Ora Lee Mitchell, a familiar face at the Shelby County Law Library, died Saturday from cancer. She was 75. Mitchell served as library assistant for 50 years helping judges, attorneys and the public. Some of the young employees she oversaw during her tenure included Tim Dwyer and Clyde Carson, who went on to careers on the bench as a general sessions criminal court judge and jury commissioner, respectively. Mitchell's funeral will be Saturday at 11 a.m. at New Gilfield Baptist Church, 608 Gilleas Road, Memphis, TN 38109.
The Memphis Daily News has more
Vanderbilt prof dead at 65
Vanderbilt University professor Neal Tate, who chaired the undergraduate political science department and taught at the law school, died Sept. 13 while recovering from surgery. He was 65. Tate earned a master's degree and doctorate from Tulane University. He served as a Fulbright-Hays Senior Research Fellow at Ateneo de Manila University's College of Law in the Philippines in 1994 and as director of the Law and Social Science Program at the National Science Foundation from 1994 to 1996. For three years he edited The "Law and Politics Book Review," published by the American Political Science Association. At the time of his death he was working on a book titled "Political Repression, Human Rights and the Rule of Law: The Global Picture, 1976-2005." A memorial service is planned later this week on campus.
Read more from the university
Your Practice
Scalia offers trial tips
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia drew a crowd of roughly 300 people this week as he shared tips for arguing a case. Before signing copies of his book, "Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges," Scalia said, "Don't beat a dead horse...Be brief. And when your time expires, shut up and sit down." The book also encourages lawyers to avoid using acronyms and to study a judge's background and likes and dislikes before appearing in court. reported the news
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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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