Supreme Court Historical Society honors Bredesen, Conte

Nearly 300 lawyers gathered last night at the 5th Annual Tennessee Supreme Court Historical Society (TSCHS) Dinner honoring the Tennessee Supreme Court. The event paid tribute to Gov. Phil Bredesen and First Lady Andrea Conte. Bredesen was honored for his steadfast support for merit selection and retention elections. In his remarks, Bredesen said, he is "a big believer" in the merit selection and retention plan because it provides a good way of maintaining judicial independence along with the needed checks and balances. Bredesen said the plan also avoids the impact of special interest money and reduces the influence of politics on the judicial process. In his parting remarks, Bredesen warned against what he said is growing "narcissism "by public officials.
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With Dissenting Opinion

Court: TSC


H. Tom Kittrell, Jr. and T.J. Cross-Jones, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Ana R. Padilla.

Blakeley D. Matthews and Brian W. Holmes, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Twin City Fire Insurance Company.

Judge: KOCH

This appeal involves the workers' compensation liability of an employer for the unsolved fatal shooting of an employee on the employer's premises. The employee's surviving spouse filed suit in the Chancery Court for Davidson County seeking death benefits under Tennessee's Workers' Compensation Law. Following a bench trial, the trial court denied the widow's claim for workers' compensation benefits. The court concluded that the employee's death was the result of a neutral assault and that the "street risk" doctrine was inapplicable because the employer's premises were not open to the public. On appeal, the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel declined to presume that neutral assaults on an employer's premises were compensable and affirmed the trial court's judgment. We granted the surviving spouse's petition for full court review. Like the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel, we decline to engraft a non-statutory presumption favoring compensability in cases involving neutral assaults on the employer's premises. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel and the trial court.

WADE dissenting


Court: TCA


S. Keenan Carter, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Alex Lyon & Son Sales Managers and Auctioneers, Inc.

Gregg Boles, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, Pro Se.


Suit was filed for breach of contract. Plaintiff sought summary judgment, which was denied. A trial on the merits followed and the trial court ruled for the defendant. Plaintiff appeals, seeking review of the denial of summary judgment. Since there was a trial on the merits, we cannot review the denial of the summary judgment in this case. We affirm the trial court.

CORRECTION: On page one (1) of the opinion, the spelling of attorney Steven A. Riley's first name has been corrected from "Stephen"

Court: TCA


Steven A. Riley and James N. Bowen, II, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Larry H. Coleman.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Janet M. Kleinfelter, Deputy Attorney General; Joe R. Shirley, Assistant Attorney General; Virginia Barham, Assistant Attorney General for appellees, Matthew Kisber and Reagan Farr.


This case involves a petition for access to certain documents pursuant to the Tennessee Public Records Act, Tenn. Code Ann. section 10-7-101 et seq. The Appellees asserted in the trial court, and on appeal, that the documents are confidential and privileged pursuant to the tax information and tax administration information exceptions found in Tenn. Code Ann. section 67-1-1702; pursuant to the "ECD exception" provided in Tenn. Code Ann. section 4-3-730(c); and also pursuant to the Deliberative Process Privilege. The trial court denied the Appellant's petition finding that the ECD exception applied and therefore, held that the documents at issue should remain confidential for five years. The trial court, however, found that the tax information and tax administration information exceptions did not apply and declined to apply a Deliberative Process Privilege. Appellant appealed the trial court's denial of his petition. On appeal, the Appellees assert that the trial court erred in not finding the tax information and tax administration information exceptions applicable and in not applying the Deliberative Process Privilege. After reviewing the record, including the withheld documents, we find that the trial court erred in not finding that the tax information and tax administration information exceptions, as provided in Tenn. Code Ann. section 67-1-1702, applied. Consequently, we affirm the trial court's denial of the Appellant's petition but for different reasoning.


Court: TCA


Barry L. Howard, Nathaniel K. Cherry, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Fireman & Associates, LLP and Robert N. Fireman, Individually and d/b/a Fireman & Associates, LLP.

Dream House Mortgage Corporation of Rhode Island, Pro Se.


This appeal involves in personam jurisdiction over an out-of-state defendant. Plaintiff, a Tennessee mortgage company, filed suit against the Appellee herein, a Rhode Island mortgage company, after Plaintiff allegedly suffered injury from a breach of contract on the part of Appellee, stemming from Plaintiff's purchase of a loan from Appellee in the secondary mortgage market. In the posture of plaintiff, Appellee filed a third-party complaint against the Massachusetts lawyer and firm, the Appellants herein, who had underwritten the loan that Appellee ultimately sold to the Tennessee Plaintiff. The lawyer and firm filed a motion in the Tennessee court to dismiss the third-party complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction. The trial court found that Tennessee had personal jurisdiction over the third-party defendant law firm and lawyer, and denied their motion to dismiss. The lawyer and firm appeal. Finding that there are not sufficient contacts with Tennessee, we reverse the trial court's finding of personal jurisdiction, and remand for further proceedings.

With Concurring Opinion

Court: TCA


Douglas T. Jenkins, Rogersville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kathy Gordon.

S. Morris Hadden, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellee, By-Lo Markets, Inc.


Plaintiff, while delivering pizza to customers in the By-Lo grocery store, slipped and fell. She filed suit against By-Lo, claiming negligence. By-Lo moved for summary judgment and after a hearing on the matter, the trial court entered summary judgment in favor of By-Lo and dismissed the suit. Plaintiff appeals. We affirm.

SUSANO concurring


Court: TCA


Jerry E. Farmer, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant, Hood Land Trust by Lex Hood, Trustee.

Granville Summer R. Bouldin, Jr., and David Wayne Kious, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellees, Denny Hastings, Shane Hastings, Denny Hastings Family Limited Partnership #2, Shane Hastings Family Limited Partnership #2.


The trial court granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment with respect to multiple claims brought by a prospective seller of real property against the prospective buyers. We have concluded that the trial court erred in granting summary judgment for the defendants on the plaintiff's unjust enrichment claim. In all other respects, we affirm the decision of the trial court.


Court: TCA


Marvin Bernard Berke and Megan England Demastus, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, William C. Killian.

Roger E. Jenne, Cleveland, Tennessee, for the appellee, Rebecca McManus Killian.


Husband petitioned to reduce or terminate his alimony obligation, and the trial court denied his petition and awarded wife attorney fees. Husband argues on appeal that the trial court erred in denying his petition and in awarding wife attorney fees. We affirm the decision of the trial court in all respects.

IN THE MATTER OF: SHANYA A.A. (d.o.b. 2/17/07), A Child Under Eighteen Years of Age

Court: TCA


Cicely A. Dickerson, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Sharon T.A.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General and Elizabeth C. Driver, Senior Counsel, for the appellee, State of Tennessee Department of Children's Services.


This is a termination of parental rights case. The Department of Children's Services ("DCS") obtained custody of the child at issue under the terms of a protective custody order entered shortly after the child's birth. The juvenile court cited the mother's history with DCS and her history of mental illness as the primary reasons supporting removal. DCS developed two permanency plans with the mother designed to address her mental illness and equip her with the parental skills necessary to care for the child. The mother, however, did not carry out her responsibilities under the plans, take her medication as prescribed, or consistently attend critical mental health appointments. DCS accordingly petitioned to terminate the mother's parental rights on multiple grounds. After a hearing that the mother did not attend, the court terminated her parental rights on the grounds of abandonment by willful failure to provide financial support, substantial noncompliance with the responsibilities of the permanency plans, and persistence of the conditions that required the child's removal. The mother appeals, arguing that DCS did not make reasonable efforts to reunite her with the child and did not clearly and convincingly prove grounds for termination. We disagree and affirm the decision of the trial court.

Drug Testing Fees

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2010-10-06

Opinion Number: 10-103


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UT Law hires new reference librarian
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Sale of cookbook to benefit Memphis Area Legal Services
Members of the Memphis legal community have contributed recipes to a new "Cooking Up Justice" cookbook that will be available soon. Proceeds from the sale of the books will go to Memphis Area Legal Services Inc. The cookbook is a project sponsored by Alpha Reporting Corporation. To reserve your copy today, email Karen Byars or call her at (901) 523-8974.

What's your workout routine?
The ABA Journal wants to know how fit you are. What do you do to work a good regular fitness routine into your schedule? Or are you just too busy and skip the workout entirely? You can also see results from previous surveys, such as "Do You Take Your Technology Everywhere?" (47 percent answered "I'm always wired; even the restroom isn't off-limits").
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Tenn. Supreme Court
Students to hear oral arguments in two cases
More than 200 high school students from Hickman, Lewis, Perry and Williamson counties will hear oral arguments in two Tennessee Supreme Court cases on Oct. 7, as part of a program designed to educate young Tennesseans about the judicial branch of government. It is part of the SCALES (Supreme Court Advancing Legal Education for Students) project. Participating students and teachers also will join the court for lunch and a brief program where students will be seated at tables with the justices, local judges and attorneys, and city, county and school officials.
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Today the U.S. Supreme Court looked at First Amendment issues raised by a church's picketing of U.S. service members' funerals and a grieving father who wants it to stop. The church's position is that U.S. deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq are punishment for Americans' immorality, including tolerance of homosexuality and abortion. Members of the Westboro Baptist Church demonstrated during Albert Snyder's son's funeral, carrying signs reading "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" and "God Hates the USA." Snyder wants the Supreme Court to reinstate a lower court's $5 million verdict against the church for intentional infliction of emotional distress and privacy violations. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said the question is whether the First Amendment must tolerate "exploiting this bereaved family." Snyder's attorney said this "is not just a case about speech, but about harassment, targeted harassment of a private person's funeral."
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-- The Lawyer's Guide to Adobe Acrobat, Third Edition (Covers Adobe Acrobat 8.0)
-- The Lawyer's Guide to Collaboration Tools & Technologies: Smart Ways to Work Together + CD-ROM Supplement
-- The Lawyer's Guide to Governing Your Firm
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-- The Lawyer's Guide to Practice Management Systems Software, Second Edition

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