Experts give insights on flood-related home buyouts

One consequence of the great flood of 2010 is an accelerated buyout program of homes in the floodway and flood plain. To help equip volunteer lawyers handle disaster related cases involving these buyouts, Doug Sloan from Metro Nashville's Legal and Recovery teams and Carrie Logan from Metro Nashville's Planning and Recovery teams will present a TennBarU free CLE webcast at noon on July 15.

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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 or to obtain a text version of each opinion, 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 the TBA's Membership Central.

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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.

WILLIAM J. BRADLEY v. CHRISTY L. BRADLEY

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Laurie Lea Doty, White House, Tennessee, for the appellant, Christy L. Bradley.

Charlotte U. Fleming, Springfield, Tennessee, for the appellee, William J. Bradley.

Judge: BENNETT

Mother filed a petition for an increase in child support, which was denied by the trial court based on the findings and recommendations of a special master. On appeal, Mother challenges the special master's determination that Mother was voluntarily underemployed, that Father should continue to provide Child's health insurance, and that Mother owed Father $498.73 for her share of medical bills incurred on behalf of Child, as well as the special master's calculation of Father's income for child support purposes. Because we have determined that the special master erred in considering evidence outside the record, we vacate the trial court's decisions regarding Father's income and child support obligation and remand those matters for redetermination. We affirm the trial court's finding that Mother is underemployed and remand the matter to the trial court for a calculation of imputed income. We also vacate the trial court's calculation and division of medical bills and remand the matter for reexamination, recalculation and redivison. The trial court's decision regarding Child's health insurance coverage is affirmed.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/bradleyw_070910


RUFUS R. CLIFFORD, III AND WIFE, CARRIE C. CLIFFORD v. LOYDA TACOGUE, M. D., ST. THOMAS HOSPITAL, AND ST. JUDE MEDICAL, S.C., INC.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

William Kennerly Burger, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellants, Rufus R. Clifford, III and Carrie Clifford.

Michael F. Jameson and J. Eric Miles, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Loyda Tacogue, M.D.

Robert S. Patterson and Amy D. Hampton, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, St. Thomas Hospital.

John E. Anderson, Sr., Nashville, Tennessee, and Edward F. Fox, Carrie L. Hund, and Tiffany M. Quick, Minneapolis, Minnesota, for the appellees, St. Jude Medical S.C., Inc.

Judge: DINKINS

Plaintiff husband alleged that he suffered an injury in the course of undergoing a cardiac catheterization procedure. Plaintiffs filed suit against the treating physician, alleging medical malpractice, lack of informed consent, and medical battery; against the hospital, alleging medical malpractice based on an actual or apparent agency with the physician; and against the manufacturer of the medical device used in the procedure, alleging that the manufacturer was vicariously liable for medical battery committed by its employee. The trial court granted summary judgment to the defendants on all claims, holding that plaintiffs failed to establish that the use of the medical device to close the site where the catheter was inserted was the cause of husband's injury. Finding that the defendants negated the element of causation essential to each cause of action, the trial court's judgment is affirmed.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/cliffordr_070910


LISA P. GRAY v. ODELL WATKINS, JR.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Felicia Corbin Johnson, Laquita R. Stokes, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Odell W atkins

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General, Warren A. Jasper, Senior Counsel, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, State of Tennessee, ex rel. Lisa P. Gray

Judge: HIGHERS

The State of Tennessee filed a petition for child support on behalf of the child's mother. The respondent acknowledged his obligation to pay such support, and the juvenile court referee established his current and retroactive child support obligation. The respondent filed a request for rehearing before the juvenile court judge, which was dismissed for failure to prosecute. He appealed to this Court but failed to provide a transcript or statement of the evidence. Finding no error in the limited record before us, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/grayl_070910


IN RE: THE ESTATE OF ELMA WARD

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

John Van Den Bosch, Jr., Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellant, Jimmy B. Ward.

Teresa A. Luna, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Teresa Frazier.

Harold F. Johnson, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Robert Ward.

Judge: STAFFORD

This case involves the validity of a holographic will. Appellant, son of the decedent, appeals the trial court's finding that the holographic will was valid, arguing that the document did not comply with the statutory requirements of Tenn. Code Ann. section 32-1-105. Finding that the presence of more than one signature, the location of the signatures, and the fact that the document contains both handwritten and typewritten sections does not negate the validity of a holographic will, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/warde_070910


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. DANIEL ROSS McCLELLAN

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Gerald T. Eidson, Rogersville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Daniel Ross McClellan.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Leslie E. Price, Assistant Attorney General; C. Berkeley Bell, Jr., District Attorney General; J. Douglas Godbee and Alex Pearson, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: TIPTON

The Defendant, Daniel Ross McClellan, was convicted of rape of a child, a Class A felony, and incest, a Class C felony. He was sentenced as a Range II, multiple offender to serve forty years as a child rapist for the rape conviction and ten years for the incest conviction, with the sentences to be served concurrently. On appeal, he argues that the trial court erred in sentencing him as a multiple offender. We hold that the trial court properly sentenced the Defendant as a Range II offender for the incest conviction but erred in sentencing him as a Range II offender for the rape of a child conviction. We remand the case to the trial court for resentencing in accordance with this opinion.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/mcclelland_070910


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. DONALD MICKENS

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Ryan Wiley, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Defendant-Appellant, Donald Mickens.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Cameron L. Hyder, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Stacy McEndree, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: MCMULLEN

Defendant-Appellant, Donald Mickens, was convicted by a Shelby County jury in case numbers 07-01695 and 07-01696 of the sale of cocaine, possession with intent to sell cocaine, and possession with intent to deliver cocaine, Class C felonies. In case number 07- 01701, Mickens was convicted by a Shelby County jury of facilitation to commit the offense of sale of cocaine, facilitation to commit the offense of possession with intent to sell cocaine, and facilitation to commit the offense of possession with intent to deliver cocaine, Class D felonies. In case number 07-01695, the trial court merged the possession with intent to deliver cocaine conviction with the possession with intent to sell cocaine conviction and sentenced Mickens as a Range II, multiple offender to two concurrent nine-year sentences in the Tennessee Department of Correction. In case number 07-01696, the trial court again merged the possession with intent to deliver cocaine conviction with the possession with intent to sell cocaine conviction and sentenced Mickens as a Range II, multiple offender to two concurrent nine-year sentences in the Tennessee Department of Correction. In case number 07-01701, the trial court merged the facilitation to commit the offense of possession with intent to deliver cocaine with the facilitation to commit the offense of possession with intent to sell cocaine and sentenced Mickens as a Range II, multiple offender to two concurrent seven-year sentences in the Tennessee Department of Correction. The court ordered Mickens to serve his sentences in case number 07-01695, 07-01696, and 07-01701 consecutively, for an effective sentence of twenty-five years at thirty-five percent in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, Mickens argues that the trial court erred in admitting evidence of several prior bad acts involving drugs. Upon review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/mickensd_070910.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. MANFRED STEINHAGEN

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Manfred Steinhagen, Memphis, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; John H. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; Dan M. Alsobrooks, District Attorney General; and Robert Wilson, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: MCMULLEN

The Defendant-Appellant, Manfred Steinhagen, appeals pro se from the Circuit Court of Cheatham County. He was initially found guilty by the General Sessions Court of Cheatham County of speeding and violating the Financial Responsibility Act, both Class C misdemeanors. Steinhagen was fined ten dollars for each conviction. He appealed to the Circuit Court, which upheld the judgments of the General Sessions Court. In this appeal, Steinhagen challenges the sufficiency of the evidence and raises several procedural claims. Upon review, we affirm the judgments of the Circuit Court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/steinhagenm_070910


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ADRIAN TODD

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Robert Wilson Jones, District Public Defender; and Tony N. Brayton (on appeal) and Robert Felkner (at trial), Assistant Public Defenders, for the appellant, Adrian Todd.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Sophia S. Lee, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Stacey McEndree and Byron Winsett, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: MCLIN

The defendant, Adrian Todd, stands convicted of second degree murder, a Class A felony. The trial court sentenced him as a Range I violent offender to twenty-three years at 100% in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, the defendant challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his conviction. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/todda_070910


TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
Election 2010
Your Practice
TBA Member Services

Legal News
Martin's priorities: gangs, white-collar and discretion
New U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee Jerry E. Martin talks about his transition into the job and his priorities, including building "on the legacy of Ed Yarbrough." He says he'll continue going after gangs and white-collar criminals, but believes that discretion is important, too. "One thing that I will be remembered for," he said, "is that I exercised my discretion when it was appropriate by not indicting someone or by allowing a pretrial diversion. It's just making sound decisions, and always letting the facts and the evidence drive every decision you make." Read the interview on NashvillePost.com. Martin took the ceremonial oath of the office Thursday afternoon at the federal courthouse.
Read about the ceremony in The City Paper
Sheriff: state's immigration law will be 'obsolete'
Davidson County Sheriff Daron Hall thinks a new Tennessee law requiring jailers to check the immigration status of all foreign-born inmates probably will be moot. "To be real honest, I believe once the (federal Secure Communities) program goes to the entire country, it makes this new law obsolete. There is no need for the jailer to do it," Hall said. But other Tennessee sheriffs are forging ahead with their orders to write guidelines for enforcing the new state law, even as immigration experts express fear that it will lead to ethnic and racial profiling by police and jailers. Enforcement is set to begin Jan. 1.
The Tennessean has more
New scholarship at U of M law school honors Jim House
Evolve Bank & Trust has established an annual scholarship at the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law in memory of E. James "Jim" House Jr. House was a 1967 law alumnus and, until his death in December 2009, the bank's legal counsel, financial consultant, and member of its board of directors. The scholarship will be awarded in the 2011-2012 academic year with preference (but not a requirement) given to graduates of Vanderbilt University.
Learn more about the scholarship
'DOMA' ruled unconstitutional
U.S. District Judge Joseph Tauro on Thursday said that part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. The case was brought by eight gay couples who argued the federal government was unfairly denying them basic perks that other married couples get -- like Social Security benefits and certain tax breaks. The couples argued the federal government has always deferred to states on who's married, so if Massachusetts says they are married, they should be recognized as married. The court ruled that denying benefits to gay couples was not only discriminatory but also a violation of states' rights.
National Public Radio reports
Election 2010
Poll shows 36 percent undecided in governor's race
In a recent poll, 89 percent of those surveyed said they were likely to vote in Tennessee's gubernatorial primary. But only a week before early voting, the number of likely voters who called themselves "undecided" -- 36 percent -- was larger than the number who named any one candidate. Among those voters who did support a candidate, Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam currently holds the lead for the Republican nomination, according to the survey, with 32 percent of respondents saying they intend to vote for him.
Learn more from WSMV
Your Practice
Home office: it takes more than space to make it work
A growing segment of lawyers are taking their practices home and setting up practice there. The appeal extends beyond economics, with many choosing to work from home for a better work-life fit. But while some self-motivated workers thrive in a home-based office, others don't have the discipline to avoid multitasking.
The ABA Journal explores the topic
TBA Member Services
First Tennessee is TBA's preferred provider
First Tennessee has crafted a package of discounts to meet the specific needs of Tennessee Bar Association members.
Find savings on merchant credit services, checking and savings, financial planning and more

 
 
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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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