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TBA Bill Tracking Service — Action List
(Updated April 27, 2011)


These are bills that the Tennessee Bar Association has a direct interest in. This means it has either initiated the legislation, taken a position on the bill or has a policy on the issue.


To track a bill's status between updates, visit the General Assembly's web site. There you can track each bill by its number and also find contact information on each senator and representative.

BANKING & CREDIT

SB 0716
Woodson
HB 0911
Lundberg
Mortgage lender and service provider licensure exceptions. Permits an attorney without a mortgage lender's license to receive compensation from a mortgage lender, loan broker or service provider for negotiating terms of a residential mortgage loan as a side matter in representing a client. Provides additional exceptions to the mortgage lender license requirement including sellers of residential mortgage loans subject to specified limitations, commercial real estate lending to non-owners, employer-employee mortgage loans, mortgage loans pursuant to court order, and real estate brokerage activities. (S: Woodson; H: Lundberg)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Commerce.

SB 1014
Finney L.
HB 1241
Haynes R.
Mortgage lender licensure exceptions. Adds two additional exceptions for requiring a person to obtain a mortgage lender, loan broker, or loan service provider license exempting sellers under the control of another person selling five or fewer residential mortgage loans in a year that do not publicly hold themselves out to be in the mortgage lending business and are not required under federal law to obtain a mortgage originator's license and any person performing real estate brokerage activities who is a licensed real estate broker. (S: Finney L.; H: Haynes R.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Commerce.

SB 1451
Overbey
HB 1921
Marsh

Public Chapter (PDF)
Notice of the right to foreclose. Requires the notice of the right to foreclosure to be contained in any deed memorializing the sale, instead of in the notice of foreclosure. Allows written notice to not be required if the lender has met with the principal debtor in-person and discussed certain foreclosure issues within 180 days before publishing notice of foreclosure. Allows such exemption of written proof to be met by the lender's sworn affidavit. Requires certain foreclosure notices to not apply to sales if the borrower has obtained a prior loan modification or refinance after July 1, 2010. (S: Overbey; H: Marsh)
House Co-Sponsors: Fitzhugh; Johnson P.; Williams R.; Matheny; Pitts; Johnson C.; Montgomery; Casada; Sargent; Curtiss; Hardaway
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 deletes provision that allowed a signed document to be conclusive proof of the meeting, in lieu of a sworn affidavit. Requires that the lender, trustee, or agent who has met with the principal debtor to execute such sworn affidavit. Specifies that the notice requirement would not apply to any sale conducted if the borrower has obtained a prior loan modification or refinance "after July 1, 2011". (Under present law, the notice requirement does not apply to any sale conducted if the borrower has obtained a prior loan modification or refinance before July 1, 2010.) Senate amendment 2 deletes current law provisions (35-5-117 in its entirety) regarding legal notices of foreclosure, effective January 1, 2013, and makes applicable to any notice of foreclosure for which the first publication occurs on or after January 1, 2013.

Senate Status: Senate 04/07/2011 passed with amendments 1 and 2.
House Status: House passed 04/07/2011.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0122 (effective 04/25/2011).

CAMPAIGNS & LOBBYING

SJR 0038
Bell

Constitutional amendment - election of attorney general. Proposes an amendment to Article VI, Section 5 of the Constitution of the State of Tennessee, to provide for the popular election of the Attorney General and Reporter for the state. (S: Bell)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.

COMMERCIAL LAW

SB 0879
Tate
HB 1057
Turner J.
Violations of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Makes violations of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also a violation of the Consumer Protection Act of 1977. (S: Tate; H: Turner J.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Consumer & Employee Affairs.

SB 0921
Beavers
HB 1084
Eldridge
Consumer Civil Litigation Funding Act. Places requirements on contracts assigning a civil litigation funding provider the right to receive funds from a consumer's pursued civil claim such as requiring the contract be completely filled in, include a right of rescission, each page be initialed by the consumer, and include a written acknowledgement by the consumer's attorney containing several specified statements concerning compensation and fees. Requires a contract to include material terms conspicuously placed including all fees to be paid, the consumer's right to cancellation, prohibitions on the funding provider from making any decisions regarding the litigation, provisions encouraging advice of counsel, and a clause limiting fees to not exceed the amount of a consumer's recovery. Prohibits funding providers from engaging in specific conduct such as false or misleading advertisement, refer clients to attorneys or medical providers, attempt to contract for waivers of the right to trial or damages, and pay or accept referral fees or commissions from medical providers or attorneys. Declares violations of the above requirements constitute a deceptive act or practice and are punishable by civil penalty up to $10,000 per violation. (S: Beavers; H: Eldridge)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Consumer & Employee Affairs.

SB 1312
Johnson J.
HB 1826
Lundberg

Public Chapter (PDF)
Clarifies references to business organizations. This bill clarifies that the following applications under the Tennessee Limited Liability Company Act and the Tennessee Revised Limited Liability Company Act, as applicable, must be "accompanied by a confirmation of good standing" instead of "contain a confirmation of good standing": an application for reinstatement from an administratively-dissolved LLC; and an application for reinstatement from a foreign LLC whose certificate of authority was administratively revoked. This bill also corrects references from "certificate of cancellation of authority" to "certificate of cancellation of certificate of authority" and corrects internal cross-references in the Acts. (S: Johnson J.; H: Lundberg)
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 revises various provisions of present law regarding business organization documents that are filed with the secretary of state. Under present law, documents relating to for-profit corporations, limited liability companies, and limited partnerships may be filed with the secretary of state printed on either letter or legal size paper. This amendment revises this provision to require that such documents be printed only on letter size paper, and not on legal size paper. Present law authorizes the secretary of state to establish procedures for the filing of documents relating to for-profit corporations with the secretary of state by means of facsimile transmission. This amendment additionally authorizes the secretary to establish procedures for the filing of documents with the secretary of state by any other electronic means. Under present law, subject to any qualification stated in the certificate, a certificate of existence or authorization issued by the secretary of state for a for-profit or not-for-profit corporation is effective as of the date on the certificate and may be relied upon as conclusive evidence that the domestic corporation is in existence or that the foreign corporation is authorized to transact business in this state and is in good standing. This amendment clarifies that such a certificate may be relied upon as conclusive evidence that "the domestic or foreign corporation is in existence or is authorized to transact business in this state and is in good standing" instead of that "the domestic corporation is in existence or that the foreign corporation is authorized to transact business in this state and is in good standing".

Senate Status: Senate 03/28/2011 passed with amendment 1.
House Status: House passed 04/04/2011.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0099 (effective 04/21/2011).

CRIMINAL LAW

SB 0350
Beavers
HB 1638
Dennis
Recordings in court proceedings in lieu of reporter. Provides that a defendant in a criminal case has the right to have a person act as court reporter and make a verbatim recording of all proceedings in open court. (S: Beavers; H: Dennis)
Senate Co-Sponsors: Berke; Marrero; Barnes; Ford O.; Herron
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 deletes the language "a person act as court reporter and" in the amendatory language of the bill and makes more specific reference to licensed court reporters pursuant to the Tennessee Court Reporting Act of 2009. Senate amendment 2 deletes the language "criminal case" and substitutes the language "criminal case as defined by TCA 40-14-301(3)", which means the trial of any criminal offense which is punishable by confinement in the state penitentiary and any proceeding for the writ of habeas corpus wherein the unlawful confinement is alleged to be in a state, county or municipal institution.

Senate Status: Senate 03/28/2011 passed with amendments 1 and 2.
House Status: House passed 04/27/2011.
Other Status: Sent 04/27/2011 to the speakers for signatures.

SB 0511
Faulk
HB 0572
Dennis
Uniform Electronic Recordation of Custodial Interrogations. Creates the Uniform Electronic Recordation of Custodial Interrogations act requiring all custodial interrogations be recorded without the persons consent or knowledge if they relate to a felony, or a crime resulting in either mental, physical, or pecuniary injury to a person. Exempts specified circumstances from being recorded such as refusal of the person being interrogated to answer questions, revealing confidential informants, jeopardizing the safety of an officer, exigent circumstances and equipment failure. Requires exceptions be proven by a preponderance of the evidence or statements admitted in court may be questioned for their reliability or ruled inadmissible. Provides for cataloging requirements and directs the Tennessee peace officer standards and training commission to adopt rules to implement the act and address specific issues. Orders the adoption of rules by law enforcement agencies to ensure compliance and therefore protect them from civil liability for violations. Broadly captioned. (S: Faulk; H: Dennis)
Amendment: House Judiciary Subcommittee amendment 1 allows police departments to opt out of the bill when no recording equipment is available.

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: Failed 04/27/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary after adopting amendment 1.

SB 0559
McNally
HB 0401
Watson E.
Exclusionary Rule Reform Act. Enacts the "Exclusionary Rule Reform Act." Provides that evidence that is seized as a result of executing a search warrant that is otherwise admissible in a criminal proceeding and not in violation of the constitutions of the United States or the State of Tennessee shall not be suppressed as a result of any good faith mistake or technical violation made by a law enforcement officer, court official, or the issuing magistrate. (S: McNally; H: Watson E.)
House Co-Sponsors: Rich; Coley; Turner M.; Brooks, Harry; Haynes R.; Bass; Lundberg; Elam; Hurley; Womick; Gotto; Matheny
Amendment: Senate Judiciary amendment 1, House Judiciary amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Defines "good faith mistake or technical violation" to be any of the following: an unintentional clerical error or omission made by an officer, court official, or issuing magistrate in the preparation or issuance of a search warrant; an occurrence when an officer executes the search warrant, but the executing officer is not the one whom the warrant was delivered to; or a reasonable reliance on a statute or controlling court precedent that is subsequently ruled unconstitutional after the issuance of a search warrant, unless the court determines otherwise. Allows evidence to be submitted to the court if the evidence was not seized in violation of the federal or state constitutions and the court finds that such evidence was seized due to a good faith mistake or technical violation made by a law enforcement officer, court official, or the issuing magistrate. Prohibits civil actions concerning unreasonable search and seizures if the entity seized the evidence as a result of a good faith mistake or technical violation. Senate Judiciary amendment 2 makes a technical correction by adding the word "clerical" in front of the word "omission".

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended with amendment 2 and previously adopted amendent 1 04/27/2011. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.

SB 0695
Faulk
HB 1034
Watson E.
Elimination of post-conviction defender relief. Eliminates post-conviction defender relief at the state level. (S: Faulk; H: Watson E.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Caption bill held on House clerk's desk.

SB 0770
Ketron
HB 1578
Carr
Lawful Immigration Enforcement Act. Prohibits the state and local governments, in addition to officials, from interfering with the enforcement of federal immigration laws, including the sending of certain information related to immigration status and whether an alien is in compliance with federal immigration laws. Allows certain voting persons to file complaints concerning interference with such enforcement. Creates the lawful immigration enforcement fund. Establishes new training requirements for police officers. Requires law enforcement officers to request verification of immigration status from individuals reasonably suspected to be illegally present in the country. Allows such individual to present certain identification to be presumed lawfully present in the country. Allows such law enforcement officers to transport the individual if the agency has verified that the person is unlawfully present in the country. Broadly captioned. (Identical to HB 1380 except for punctuation and change in order of Sections 13 and 15). (S: Ketron; H: Carr)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Southerland

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.

SB 0780
Ketron
HB 1380
Carr
Lawful Immigration Enforcement Act. Prohibits the state and local governments, in addition to officials, from interfering with the enforcement of federal immigration laws, including the sending of certain information related to immigration status and whether an alien is in compliance with federal immigration laws. Allows certain voting persons to file complaints concerning interference with such enforcement. Creates the lawful immigration enforcement fund. Establishes new training requirements for police officers. Requires law enforcement officers to request verification of immigration status from individuals reasonably suspected to be illegally present in the country. Allows such individual to present certain identification to be presumed lawfully present in the country. Allows such law enforcement officers to transport the individual if the agency has verified that the person is unlawfully present in the country. Broadly captioned. (S: Ketron; H: Carr)
House Co-Sponsors: Maggart; Matheny; Shipley; White M.; Watson E.; Sexton; Casada; Miller D.; Floyd; Lollar; Weaver; Womick; Campbell S.; Sparks; Pody; Rich; Hensley; Hill; Hurley; Wirgau; Ragan; Keisling; Gotto; Hall; Butt; Coley; Todd; Faison; Williams R.; Forgety; Ford D.; Holt; Eldridge; Brooks, Harry; Swann; Cobb J.; Dean; McManus; Hawk; Evans; Powers; Sanderson; Matlock; Halford; Harrison; Elam; Alexander; Brooks, Kevin; Dennis; Williams K.
Amendment: House State and Local amendment 1 deletes the language "no less than" in reference to the 90 days that a local government entity, official, or the state shall have to comply with a court order regarding violations of the Lawful Immigration Enforcement Act.

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary deferred to last calendar.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Finance deferred to 05/11/2011.

SB 0827
Ramsey R.
HB 1723
Dennis
Creates post-conviction defender oversight commission. Sunsets the current post-conviction defender commission. Creates a new post-conviction defender oversight commission. Specifies the commission's duties to include overseeing budget, staffing, and caseload concerns. Specifies the commission to include nine members. Specifies that the commissioners need not be attorneys. Specifies each term of office is four years. (S: Ramsey R.; H: Dennis)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Watson B.
Amendment: SENATE AMENDMENT 1 specifies the intent of the general assembly in creating the post-conviction defender oversight commission. Requires the appointing authorities for the commission to strive to ensure that the membership of the commission appropriately reflects the racial and geographic diversity of the state. SENATE AMENDMENT 2 specifies the creation date as July 1, 2011. Removes legislative intent language but keeps substantive provisions. SENATE AMENDMENT 3 keeps substantive provisions but removes legislative intent language. SENATE AMENDMENT 4 deletes Section 10 of the bill, which removed the post-conviction defender's duty to provide certain consulting services to attorneys representing defendants in capital cases. SENATE AMENDMENT 6 allows commission members to not be attorneys. Specifies that any attorneys chosen for the commission to not be a current district attorney general, assistant district attorney general, public defender, assistant public defender, or a sitting judge. HOUSE JUDICIARY AMENDMENT 1 rolls Senate amendments 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 into one House amendment. Replaces a code section stating the legislative intent to create the post-conviction defender commission to instead create the post-conviction defender oversight commission effective July 1, 2011. Creates the office of post-conviction defender to provide indigent defendants convicted and sentenced to death with counsel to challenge such conviction and sentence. Requires the post-conviction oversight commission to be strictly administrative in nature and oversee budget, staffing, and caseload concerns. Adds language requiring the appointment of members to the commission to strive to ensure membership reflects the racial and geographic diversity of the state. Prohibits, instead of permits, the appointment of members who are currently employed as a district attorney general, assistant district attorney general, public defender, assistant public defender, or sitting judge. Deletes a provision removing the duty of the post-conviction defender to provide consulting services to all attorneys representing defendants in capital cases on a non-case-specific basis.b HOUSE GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS AMENDMENT 1 adds a 2-year sunrise provision.

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 passed with amendments 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6.
House Status: House Government Operations 04/27/2011 recommended with amendment 1, which adds a 2-year sunrise provision. Sent to House Calendar & Rules.

SB 1002
McNally
HB 1035
Watson E.
Good faith exception to the exclusionary rule. Creates a good faith exception to the exclusionary rule, which applies to unintentional document errors or a reasonable reliance on incorrect law. (S: McNally; H: Watson E.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1011
Kelsey
HB 0693
Haynes R.
Attorney abuse of prosecutorial discretion. Limits the reason for which a prosecutor may be found to have abused prosecutorial discretion in failing to grant pretrial diversion. Creates a prosecutorial right to an interlocutory appeal for a judicial finding of abuse of prosecutorial discretion. Specifies that the prosecuting attorney decides whether to grant diversion. (S: Kelsey; H: Haynes R.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House Judiciary 04/26/2011 recommended with amendment 1. Sent to House Calendar & Rules.

SB 1028
Ketron
HB 1353
Matheny
Material Support to Designated Entities Act of 2011. Creates a system where organizations are designated as sharia organizations, if they adhere to sharia, engage in terrorism or possess intent to commit terrorism and have the capability to commit terrorism, and the act of terrorism itself threatens the state. Requires the attorney general to designate such organization and publish the designation in the newspaper. Allows the attorney general to freeze the organization's assets if they are possessed by financial institutions doing business in this state. Allows the organization to petition the attorney general to have its name removed and then appeal to the state court of appeals. Allows the attorney general to revoke the organization's status as a sharia organization. Creates a Class B felony for knowingly providing material support to a sharia organization. Elevates such crime to a Class A felony, if the death of any person occurs. Defines knowingly as knowing that the organization is a sharia organization or knowing that such organization has engaged or engaged in an act of terrorism, as defined by state or federal law. Penalizes financial institutions to report to the attorney general after knowing that they possess funds of a designated sharia organization. (20 pp.) (S: Ketron; H: Matheny)
Senate Co-Sponsors: Beavers; Gresham; Johnson J.; Tracy
House Co-Sponsors: Todd; Womick; Dean; Shipley; Dennis; Faison; Rich; White M.; Gotto; Holt; Hurley; Weaver; Powers; Wirgau; Hawk; Alexander; Sargent; Butt; McDaniel; Eldridge; Sanderson
Amendment: House Judiciary amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Adopts the federal definition of terrorism, terrorist activity, and engaging in terrorist activity and defines domestic terrorist to include individuals and groups of two or more. States the bill neither targets, nor incidentally prohibits or inhibits the peaceful practice of any religion and specifies its intent to protect against acts of terrorism in the most focused and least intrusive way. Authorizes the Governor and Attorney General, following investigation and recommendation by the commissioner of safety and the director of the Tennessee Office of Homeland Security, to jointly designate an entity as a domestic terrorist if the entity engages in or retains the capability and intent to engage in terrorist activity or an act of terrorism and such act threatens a persons security and safety. Recognizes federally designated foreign terrorist organizations. Provides procedures regarding service of process and publication of a terrorist designation. Provides procedures for the challenge, revocation, and judicial review of designations. Allows the freezing of assets held by designated entities. Specifically defines material support and resources. Criminalizes the knowing provision of material support or resources to a known designated foreign or domestic terrorist entity or the attempt or conspiracy to provide such support. Requires financial institutions to report to the Governor and Attorney General awareness of funds held by the institution or within their control in which a terrorist entity has an interest and permits the Governor and Attorney General to establish reporting procedures. Allows the filing of civil suits against designated entities by any individual whose person, property, or business is injured due to a terrorist act. Prohibits the exemption of any person or entity from designation, prosecution, or civil liability based on a doctrine that may include a religious justification for violence or criminal activity.

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended 04/26/2011 with amendment 1 and 2. Sent to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.
House Status: House Judiciary 04/26/2011 recommended with amendment. Sent to House Finance, Ways & Means.

SB 1108
Campfield
HB 0959
Dunn
Authority of federal employee to make arrests in state. States that a federal employee who is not designated as a Tennessee peace officer may not make an arrest or conduct a search and seizure in this state without the written permission of the sheriff in which the arrest, search and seizure will take place except under certain circumstances. (S: Campfield; H: Dunn)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1234
Yager
HB 0694
Maggart
Pretrial diversion and probation. Abolishes pretrial diversion permitting qualified defendants to suspend prosecution for a maximum of two years during which they were required to participate in a supervised rehabilitation program among various other requirements. Adds to the list of those disqualified for probation persons seeking deferral of further proceedings for driving under the influence, persons convicted of a class A misdemeanor with a sentence of confinement, and persons who have not previously been granted judicial or pretrial diversion. (S: Yager; H: Maggart)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.

SB 1567
Ketron
HB 1582
Carr
Lawful Presence Enforcement Act. Creates the Lawful Presence Enforcement Act which prohibits any government entity or employee from restricting the exchange of information used to verify residency, confirm the identity of a detainee, or determine alien compliance with federal registration laws. Prohibits any efforts made to restrict the full enforcement of federal immigration laws. Provides rules regarding the right of state and county voters to file violation complaints, court required issuance of writs of mandamus, time limitations on employer remedial actions, and the imposition of civil penalties. Creates the lawful immigration enforcement fund which will be used to reimburse costs associated with housing and transportation of illegal immigrants. Changes the curriculum requirements for peace officer training to include various procedures related to circumstances involving illegal immigrants. Requires an officer who lawfully stops or detains a person and has reasonable suspicion the person is an illegal immigrant to request verification of the person's immigration status from federal immigration authorities unless it would hinder or obstruct a criminal investigation or the treatment of a medical emergency. Provides various rules requiring notice be given, or the transfer of custody be made, to federal agencies for persons verified as illegal immigrants who have been criminally charged or imprisoned. Creates the Tennessee Lawful Employment Act to replace current legislation governing the employment of illegal immigrants. Requires all employers to enroll in E-verify, a federal program specifically defined, by October 1, 2011 and thereafter use the program to verify the work authorization status of all newly hired employees and maintain records of all results. Creates the office of employment verification assistance to assist employers that do not have internet access in verifying work authorization status free of charge. Prohibits the knowing employment of an unauthorized alien or the use of a contract, subcontract, or independent contractor agreement to obtain labor of an unauthorized alien. Requires the commissioner to provide forms for residents to file violation complaints, conduct investigations upon receipt of complaint, and provide a hearing process for contested matters. Penalizes frivolous complaints and provides for monetary penalties, license suspension or revocation, and probationary periods for violators depending on whether it is a first-time or subsequent violator. Requires general contractors or subcontractors entering into contracts with other contractors to require affidavits of compliance with work authorization requirements, specified copies of identification and work authorization, valid state identification for independent contractors and requires copies of such documents are kept by the contractor for one year after the end of the contract term. Requires compliance with work authorization requirements for employers to receive an economic development incentive from a governmental entity and requires proof of compliance. Creates the Eligibility Verification for Entitlements Act requiring agencies and political subdivisions of the state to verify the eligibility of public benefit applicants, providing exceptions for several public benefits. Requires the applicant submit an affidavit stating they are either a U.S. citizen or a qualified alien under federal law and provide one of numerous forms of verifying identification. Subjects a person who knowingly makes false statements in their affidavit to be held liable under the false claims act and requires the agency involved to file a complaint with the state attorney general and United States attorney. Directs the agency to verify the person's status by calling the agency issuing the identification in the case of a U.S. citizen or verify a qualified alien's status through the SAVE program.(35 pp.) (S: Ketron; H: Carr)
House Co-Sponsors: Maggart; Matheny; Shipley; White; Watson E.; Sexton; Casada; Miller D.; Floyd; Todd; Weaver; Womick; Campbell; Swann; Pody; Hensley; Hill; Hurley; Wirgau; Hall; Ragan; Gotto; Keisling; Butt; Coley; Sargent; Cobb J.; Forgety; Ford D.; Lollar; Holt; Eldridge; Brooks, Harry; Dean; McManus; Hawk; Evans; Powers; Sanderson; Matlock; Halford; Harrison; Elam; Alexander; Brooks, Kevin; Dennis; Williams K.

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.

SB 1775
Campfield
HB 2039
Faison
Judge permitted to carry firearm into courtroom. Allows a judge with a valid handgun carry permit who completes the firearms component of the of the Basic Law Enforcement Course that is included within the minimum curricula requirements for police officer certification to carry a weapon in the courtroom. (S: Campfield; H: Faison)
Amendment: House Judiciary amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Permits Judges in the actual discharge of official duties to carry a handgun during judicial proceedings if they successfully complete 16 hours of POST court security training in addition to an annual eight hours of POST firearm training.

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.

SB 1779
Southerland
HB 2042
Carr
Judges may carry firearm like law enforcement officer. Authorizes a judge who has a valid handgun carry permit to carry a firearm at all times and in the same places as a law enforcement officer is authorized. (S: Southerland; H: Carr)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 2078
Faulk
HB 1769
Swann
Judge with handgun carry permit may carry gun into court. Allows a judge who has a valid handgun carry permit and is in the actual discharge of official duties as a judge to carry a handgun while in the courtroom. (S: Faulk; H: Swann)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/19/2011 in House Judiciary.

EDUCATION

SB 1438
Campfield
HB 1625
Campbell S.
Instruction in American historical achievement. Changes the current requirement that the commissioner in making recommendations for social studies textbooks, to be adopted by the board of education, select textbooks which accurately and comprehensively portray the achievements of racial and ethnic minorities to instead comprehensively portray the full range of diversity and achievements of all Americans of every race and ethnic background. Also requires the commissioner recommend textbooks that provide students with an understanding of the U.S. role in leading improvements in science, agriculture, economics, education, justice, human rights, the standard of living, government and liberty. Requires students are taught the foundational instruments, mechanisms, and values of American government and requires, instead of urges, schools to educate students in U.S. government with specified curricular goals. Adds specified characteristics of the U.S. government students must be taught such as the significance and application of the declaration of independence and the constitution, that the constitution created a republic not a democracy, and that the constitution is the rule book for the federal government and therefore federal action is not permitted unless permission can be found in the constitution. Requires all school district boards report to the commissioner their compliance with required curriculum concerning U.S government and retain copies of such records for parents and the public. (S: Campfield; H: Campbell S.)
Amendment: House Education amendment 1, Senate Education amendment 1 deletes the original bill. Requires the State Board of Education (SBOE), in consultation with the Department of Education (DOE), to review the current elementary and secondary curriculum standards for United States government and analyze the teaching of foundational instruments including the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights, mechanisms, and values of American government. Requires the SBOE to make a report to the Education Committees of the General Assembly by February 1, 2012.

Senate Status: Set for Senate Floor 04/28/2011.
House Status: House Education 04/26/2011 recommended with amendment. Sent House Calendar & Rules.

SB 1483
Marrero
HB 1888
Parkinson
Civics education added to curriculum. Requires courses in civics designed to educate children on local government in 6th grade, state government in 7th grade and federal government in 8th grade, beginning in the 2011-2012 school year. (S: Marrero; H: Parkinson)
House Co-Sponsors: Miller L.; Hardaway; Turner J.
Amendment: House Education Subcommittee amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Directs the board of education to study civics education curriculum in public schools and report back to the education committees.

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Education.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Education 04/27/2011 recommended with amendment 1. House Education Subcommittee amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Directs the board of education to study civics education curriculum in public schools and report back to the education committees. Sent to full committee.

SB 2066
Norris
HB 2114
Brooks, Kevin
Study of Tennessee government in high school. Urges the inclusion of the study of Tennessee government in the curriculum at some appropriate grade level or levels in high school. Broadly captioned. (S: Norris; H: Brooks, Kevin)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Education.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Education 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to full committee.

ESTATES & TRUSTS

SB 0962
Beavers
HB 1422
White M.
Maximum property value disposable through verbal will. Increases the maximum value of property a person may dispose of through the use of a nuncupative (verbal) will from $1,000 to $10,000 and allows persons in the active military, air or naval service in the time of war to dispose of a maximum of $50,000 instead of $10,000. (S: Beavers; H: White M.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1299
Johnson J.
HB 1920
Matlock
Advertisement for judicial or trust sales. Changes the number of newspaper publication requirements for judicial or trust sales to one time, instead of three times. Clarifies what the newspaper advertisement must include in its property description. Prohibits any error or defect in the property description from voiding the sale of such property. (S: Johnson J.; H: Matlock)
House Co-Sponsors: Tindell; Pitts; Sexton; Montgomery; Casada; Sargent; Harmon; Johnson C.

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary deferred to 5/04/2011.
House Status: House Judiciary Committee deferred to 05/03/2011.

SB 1841
Southerland
HB 1907
McDaniel
Publication of notice - trust sales. Requires first publication notice for any sale of land to foreclose a deed of trust, mortgage or other lien securing the payment of money or other thing of value or under judicial orders or process is to be at least 30 days previous to the sale. Current law specifies at least 20 days previous to the sale. (S: Southerland; H: McDaniel)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

FAMILY LAW

SB 0117
Campfield
HB 0423
Hardaway
Equally shared parenting in best interest of the child. Requires there to be a rebuttable presumption that equally shared parenting is in the best interest of the child, unless the court finds by a preponderance of evidence to the contrary or where the parents have agreed to a different custody arrangement. (S: Campfield; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Children & Family Affairs deferred to the first calendar of 2012.

SB 0118
Campfield
HB 0422
Hardaway
Noncompliance & expedited hearings for parent visitations. Allows either party of a visitation agreement to file a petition for an expedited hearing pursuant to the rules governing expedited hearings for support. Reduces the length of time that determines whether a parent is in noncompliance with a court ordered visitation from six to three months. (S: Campfield; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Children & Family Affairs deferred to the first calendar of 2012.

SB 0286
Bell
HB 0090
Hardaway
Equally shared parenting as standard custody arrangement. Enacts the "Equal and Fair Parenting Act." Creates a rebuttable presumption that equally shared parenting is the custody arrangement in the best interest of a child. (S: Bell; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Children & Family Affairs deferred to the first calendar of 2012.

SB 0803
Berke
HB 0571
Dennis
Court ordered child custody arrangements. Requires a court to order a child custody arrangement that allows both parents to enjoy the maximum amount of participation possible in the child's life while taking into account the child's best interest, the locations of both the parent's residences, and the child's need for stability among other factors. (S: Berke; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended 04/27/2011. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: House passed 04/04/2011.

SB 1172
Berke
HB 0714
Brooks, Harry

Public Chapter (PDF)
Support payments and rights of non-custodial parents. Clarifies the definition of "dissipation" in regards to equitable division of marital property as wasteful expenditures before or after the marriage the other spouse could not have reasonably known of and were made for purposes unrelated to the marriage. Excludes periodic payments from retirement and pension benefits from being considered when determining an ex-spouse's right to receive alimony or child support. Includes in the determination of alimony and child support rights lump sums in individual retirement accounts but not the income generated off of investment of such lump sums. Expands the rights of non-custodial, biological parents to include, in addition to currently enumerated rights, the right to 48 hour notice of and to participate in specified extra-curricular activities, to receive an itinerary for out-of-state trips exceeding two days, and the right to access and participation in education. Clarifies that a person or corporation in contempt of court can be fined for each day in contempt until damages ordered by the court are paid in addition to performing acts ordered by the court. (S: Berke; H: Brooks, Harry)
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 clarifies that awards of retirement or pension benefits determined to be marital property, instead of considered in the division of marital property, are not to be considered income for the purpose of determining a spouse's right to alimony. Allows income generated by the investment of awards of pension or retirement benefits determined to be marital property and distributed to complete the marital property division, instead of considered in a marital property division, may be considered income for the purpose of determining a spouse's right to receive alimony. Senate amendment 2 changes the definition of dissipation of assets to include expenditures reducing the marital property available for equitable distribution and made for purposes contrary to the marriage either before or after a complaint for divorce or separation has been filed, instead of defined as expenditures made not consistent with spending patterns and unrelated to the marriage either before or after the marriage has been determined to be irretrievably broken.

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 passed with amendments 1 and 2.
House Status: House passed 04/11/2011.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0119 (effective 04/25/2011).

SB 2034
Ford O.
HB 1220
Camper
Preference of child regarding relocation of parent. Requires the court to consider when applicable the reasonable preference of a child, who is 10 instead of 12, when determining whether to allow a custodial parent to relocate more than 100 miles from the noncustodial parent. (S: Ford O.; H: Camper)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/05/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Children & Family Affairs till 2012.

GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATION

SB 0147
Watson B.
HB 0261
Cobb J.
Sunset - judicial council. Creates sunrise provision for the judicial council, June 30, 2013. Removes authority for the council to draft amendments or comment on bills brought before the council. (S: Watson B.; H: Cobb J.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Government Operations.
House Status: Taken off notice 02/15/2011 in House Government Operations.

SJR 0008
Faulk

Term limits for general assembly members. Proposes a constitutional amendment that limits state senators to election to two terms of service and representatives to election to four terms of service. (S: Faulk)

Senate Status: Failed in Senate Judiciary 03/29/2011 after adopting amendment 1.

SJR 0020
Faulk

Constitutional amendment - election of attorney general. Proposes a constitutional amendment to provide for the popular election of the attorney general and reporter for the state. (S: Faulk)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.

SJR 0023
Beavers

Constitutional amendment - election of attorney general. Proposes a constitutional amendment to provide for the popular election of the attorney general and reporter for the state. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended after withdrawing previously adopted Senate Judiciary amendment 1 02/22/2011. Sent to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.

INSURANCE AUTOMOBILES

SB 0525
Tracy
HB 0556
Matheny
Limits right to recover noneconomic damages by motorist. Specifies that an owner or operator of a motor vehicle who knowingly permits the operation of his or her motor vehicle on the highway and does not comply with the motor vehicle financial responsibility law is deemed to have waived any right to recover against a complying policyholder for noneconomic loss. (S: Tracy; H: Matheny)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Transportation.

INSURANCE GENERAL

SB 0698
Faulk
HB 0756
Stewart M.
Study on the cost of civil litigation in TN. Requires the commissioner of commerce and insurance to develop and implement a reporting plan whereby the department of commerce and insurance must track and study the cost of civil litigation brought in TN as compared to the cost brought in other states and the federal system. Requires the commissioner to submit an annual report to the speakers of the senate and the house summarizing the finding of the plan. Requires the annual report to be submitted on or before November 1st of each year. Requires that any cost associated with the implementation of the plan to be paid out of existing reserves of the insurance division of the department of commerce and insurance. (S: Faulk; H: Stewart M.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 2018
Stewart E.
HB 1047
Matheny
Licensure of independent insurance adjusters. Requires independent insurance adjusters to be licensed. (S: Stewart E.; H: Matheny)

Senate Status: Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture deferred to 04/12/2011.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Commerce.

INSURANCE HEALTH

SB 0481
Southerland
HB 0951
Marsh
Health insurance carriers cannot make certain changes. Prohibits a health insurance carrier and any subcontractor of the carrier from changing policies, procedures, payment methodologies, or claims processing edits that lower the negotiated rates, unless the hospital agrees. (S: Southerland; H: Marsh)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Commerce.

SB 0510
Faulk
HB 0568
Dennis

Public Chapter (PDF)
Reporting on medical malpractice claims. Requires entities reporting to the commissioner of commerce and insurance on medical malpractice claims to include information as to whether the health care provider received TennCare payment for the incident that is the subject of the claim. Requires the commissioner to include such information in the annual report on medical malpractice claims. Broadly captioned. (S: Faulk; H: Dennis)
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 requires that the counsel for the claimants asserting medical malpractice claims shall provide the information rather than the entities reporting to the department of commerce and insurance. Specifies such information shall be provided for claims closed or open and pending on or after January 1, 2012.

Senate Status: Senate 04/07/2011 passed with amendment 1.
House Status: House passed 04/11/2011.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0112 (effective 01/01/2012).

JUDICIARY

SB 0114
Campfield
HB 0285
Dennis
Creates office of solicitor general. Creates the office of solicitor general and outlines various rules concerning qualifications and appointment. Transfers to the solicitor general various duties currently belonging to the attorney general, including: to defend the constitutionality of public, private and administrative legislation enacted by the general assembly, and to notify the fiscal review committee and speakers of suits which raise the issue of insufficient funding of the law. Grants the solicitor general powers currently given to the attorney general concerning compelling witness testimonies and designating an attorney general investigator. (S: Campfield; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary deferred to 2012.

SB 0121
Campfield
HB 0420
Hardaway
Allows one automatic recusal of judge in a divorce case. Authorizes defendant in divorce case to request one automatic recusal of the judge assigned to hear the case. Broadly Captioned. (S: Campfield; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Children & Family Affairs deferred to the first calendar of 2012.

SB 0124
Campfield
HB 0541
Hardaway
Petitioner pays fees if order of protection is dismissed. Requires a petitioner for order of protection to pay court costs and attorney fees if the petition is dismissed. (S: Campfield; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/20/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0125
Campfield
HB 0417
Hardaway
Discovery to defend a petition for a protective order. Authorizes a person to use discovery to aid the person's defense from a petition for a protective order. Specifies that depositions related to such defense must be conducted by an attorney licensed in this state and over the telephone. (S: Campfield; H: Hardaway)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/20/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0127
Campfield
HB 0173
Casada
Election of judges. Requires election of all judges. Requires that each election term must be eight years. Provides process for judicial vacancies. (S: Campfield; H: Casada)

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended 03/29/2011. Sent to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.
House Status: House Judiciary Committee deferred to 05/03/2011.

SB 0281
Bell
HB 0231
Dunn
Nonpartisan elections of supreme court justices. Provides for election of supreme court justices by districts in nonpartisan elections. Requires general assembly to draw contiguous districts after decennial congressional apportionment. Prohibits candidates from personally soliciting campaign contributions. Prohibits campaign treasurer from disclosing contributions to candidate. In case of vacancies, election would be held at next August election more than 30 days after the vacancy, with the governor to appoint interim successor. (S: Bell; H: Dunn)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0282
Bell

Members and appointment of court of judiciary restructured. Changes the appointment structure of the court of the judiciary to have the 16 members appointed as follows: six judges from the court of appeals and criminal appeals to be appointed by the supreme court rather than three, four public members to be appointed by the governor, three public members by the speaker of the senate and three by the speaker of the house. Abolishes the requirement that there be a member appointed by the Tennessee bar association and that three of the members have the status of trial judge, municipal court judge, and juvenile court judge. Orders that the court of the judiciary shall be vacated entirely and replaced under the above guidelines as of midnight on June 30, 2011. (S: Bell)

Senate Status: Withdrawn 03/14/2011 in Senate.

SB 0284
Bell

Appellate judges retained by 75 percent of persons voting. Requires appellate judges to be retained by 75 percent of persons voting, instead of a majority of voters. Creates a vacancy within the office when more than 25 percent of the persons voting vote to replace the particular judge. (S: Bell)

Senate Status: Withdrawn 02/07/2011 in Senate.

SB 0341
Overbey
HB 0323
Montgomery
Background checks on nominees for appellate court judgeship. Requires the TBI to complete background investigations on the panel of nominees for a vacant appellate court judgeship within 90 days of being directed to do so by the governor. (S: Overbey; H: Montgomery)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0503
Finney L.
HB 0491
Eldridge

Public Chapter (PDF)
Notice of exemption change. Specifies that the notice of exemption given by a judgment debtor must state "Tennessee law provides a $10,000 exemption" instead of "Tennessee law provides a $4,000 exemption." (S: Finney L.; H: Eldridge)

Senate Status: Senate 03/28/2011 passed.
House Status: House passed 03/28/2011.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0060 (effective 04/11/2011).

SB 0646
Bell
HB 1702
Hill
Appellate judge candidacy. Requires 75 percent of the vote instead of a majority from the people voting to retain an appellate judge for the remainder of an unexpired term or for re-election. Requires 25 percent of those voting instead of 50 percent to replace a candidate for appellate judge. (S: Bell; H: Hill)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0683
Tracy
HB 0755
Carr
Enrollment & publication of supreme court opinions. Shortens the deadline for enrolling supreme court opinions from ten to five days after delivery of the court and decreases the time given to publish opinions from 60 to 30 days from the time sufficient material is furnished to the reporter to complete a volume. (S: Tracy; H: Carr)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/13/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0699
Bell
HB 0958
Dunn
Popular election of state judges. Deletes the requirement that judicial offices placed on the ballot as a yes/no retention question be placed at the end of the ballot. Provides a voting system for electing justices to the supreme court based on highest number of votes in the state and each grand division. Changes judicial elections to require that state trial courts be elected to full eight year terms by voters of the applicable district and supreme court and appellate judges to be elected to full eight year terms by the entire state. Allows each political party to nominate a candidate for election to the supreme court. Requires persons temporarily filling judicial vacancies until the next election to be licensed to practice law in the state. (S: Bell; H: Dunn)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0796
Overbey
HB 0487
Dennis
Hearings in certain contested cases. Allows the respondent in a contested case to continue the date of the first scheduled hearing until both parties certify that they are ready for the hearing. Allows either party to make a motion to set the hearing, if an unreasonable time passes. (S: Overbey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Taken off notice 03/16/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0809
Kelsey
HB 0806
Dennis
Court clerk can transfer documents by e-mail. Permits clerk of court in which the cause originated to transmit the transcript and original documents to clerk of court to which venue was transferred through e-mail in addition to physical transfer of records upon agreement of both clerks. (S: Kelsey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0810
Kelsey
HB 0807
Dennis
Extends statutes of limitations and statutes of repose. Extends statutes of limitations and statutes of repose if the governor declares a disaster. (S: Kelsey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate General Welfare.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0895
Watson B.
HB 1666
Cobb J.
Judicial council. Recreates the judicial council. Establishes council members. Sets terms of each member at four years. Limits members to two full consecutive terms. Establishes duties of council. Allows members to be compensated for their actual expenses but provides no compensation. (S: Watson B.; H: Cobb J.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Government Operations.
House Status: Referred to House Government Operations.

SB 0972
Beavers
HB 1464
McCormick
Increases compensation for a sequestered juror. Increases compensation for a sequestered juror from $30.00 to $35.00 or each day's attendance. (S: Beavers; H: McCormick)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0978
Beavers
HB 1460
McCormick
Filing of report in regard to removal of a judge. Changes time period from ten days to ten business days from the date of the hearing that the joint legislative committee appointed to review a recommendation to remove a judge has to file its report. (S: Beavers; H: McCormick)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1088
Beavers
HB 1198
Rich
Investigative counsel for the court of the judiciary. Requires the investigative counsel to recuse him or herself from investigating a complaint filed against a sitting member of the court of the judiciary or against a judge who was a member of the court of the judiciary at the same time as the present investigative counsel served as counsel for the court. Establishes that special counsel must have the same authority and duties as the investigative counsel, with regards to such complaint. Broadly captioned. (S: Beavers; H: Rich)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Judiciary.

SB 1089
Beavers
HB 1197
Rich
Recusal motions filed with the court of the judiciary. Requires another judge to hear a recusal motion by a party that has made a timely motion requesting a judge recuse himself or herself due to incompetency, disqualification, or under Rule 10, Canon 3E of the Rules of the Supreme Court, if the judge requested to recuse denies the motion. (S: Beavers; H: Rich)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1094
Beavers
HB 1366
Dennis
Investigation of a judge for misconduct. Requires certain judicial complaints to be investigated by disciplinary counsel if the complaint establishes probable cause of judicial misconduct, instead of meeting the burden that would cause a reasonable person to believe there is a substantial probability of misconduct. Broadly captioned. (S: Beavers; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Judiciary.

SB 1097
Beavers
HB 1361
Dennis
Maintenance of records and documents by court of judiciary. Requires all records filed with, created by, or in the possession of the court of the judiciary or the office of investigative counsel to be maintained by the administrative office of the courts for at least eight years from the date of creation or receipt. Requires such records to remain public or confidential records. Changes provisions to allow documents regarding certain charges against judges to be transferred to the administrative office of the courts for storage, instead of destroyed. (S: Beavers; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Judiciary.

SB 1098
Beavers
HB 1362
Dennis
Complaints filed with court of the judiciary made public. Requires courts to release complaints filed against judges to the public, if the judge leaves the office for any reason other than death before the complaint's dismissal or final disposition. (S: Beavers; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Judiciary.

SB 1099
Beavers
HB 1363
Dennis
Rules of the court of the judiciary. Provides that rules adopted by the court of the judiciary may not be inconsistent or in conflict with the statutory provisions establishing the court. (S: Beavers; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Judiciary.

SB 1279
Ketron
HB 1225
Bass
Ineffective attorneys will not receive state funds. Prohibits any attorney who has admitted to or has been found by a court of competent jurisdiction to have rendered ineffective assistance of counsel in a criminal case from being paid or reimbursed any funds from the treasury of this state for services or expenses. Requires the attorney to furnish to the administrative office of the courts evidence that he or she has successfully completed the necessary counseling before such attorney is authorized to receive state funds for legal service again. (S: Ketron; H: Bass)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1454
Overbey
HB 1368
Dennis
Judicial council. Recreates the judicial council. Establishes council members. Creates a sunset date of two years. Limits members to two full consecutive terms. Establishes duties of council. Allows members to be compensated for their actual expenses but provides no compensation. Requires clerks of circuit courts and clerks and masters of chancery courts to monthly report certain information to the council. (10 pp.) (S: Overbey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Government Operations.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1455
Overbey
HB 1367
Dennis
Written response to complaint filed against judge. Allows disciplinary counsel to request the judge to file a written response within 20 days, instead of 30 days, after service of the complaint filed against the judge. (S: Overbey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1522
Norris
HB 2008
McCormick
Tennessee Civil Justice Act of 2011. Enacts the "Tennessee Civil Justice Act of 2011." Specifies new venue requirements for any civil suit against a company to no longer include any county in which the business has an agency or office. Reduces from $75,000,000 to $25,000,000 the maximum bond a civil litigant must post to appeal a final order and stay execution of the order while on appeal. Establishes a normal rule requiring bond equal to 125% of the judgment, excludes punitive damages from the calculation of the bond amount and provides for an appeal without the risk of bankruptcy. Clarifies that a civil plaintiff may recover for economic losses incurred but not for charges subject to discounts or forgiveness of such health care charges that would be discounted under a health care plan. Limits non-economic damages to $750,000 per injured plaintiff outside of the health care liability action context and $750,000 per occurrence in the health care liability action context. Provides limits for punitive damages at two times compensatory damages or $500,000 whichever is greater. Prevents punitive damages in products liability actions when the defendant complied with state and federal regulations. Limits liability of a seller of a product except in certain specific circumstances. Enables interlocutory appeal of orders granting or denying class certification and automatic stays. (Part of Administration Package) (13 pp.) (S: Norris; H: McCormick)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Kelsey
House Co-Sponsors: Dennis; DeBerry J.
Amendment: House Judiciary amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Removes venue from the county where the plaintiff resides in cases involving a defendant who is not a natural person and the county where the defendant is found in civil actions of a transitory nature. Allows venue in the county where the defendant's statutorily designated agent is located when the defendant does not have an agent for service of process and is not a natural person. Deletes a provision requiring venue in the court district the tort arose when parties are residents of the same county but different court districts from applying to corporations. Deletes a code section designating venue for cases involving foreign corporations. Deletes a provision establishing what damages are available in a healthcare liability action and what is considered economic damages. Limits noneconomic damages to $750,000 per individual in all civil actions including healthcare liability actions and applies the limitation to all occurrences that were or could have been asserted. Provides that the $750,000 noneconomic limitation per plaintiff shall apply in cases of comparative fault with multiple defendants. Raises the noneconomic damages limitation to $1,000,000 in cases of catastrophic injury defined to include spinal cord injuries resulting in paraplegia or quadriplegia, amputation of hands or feet, third degree burns on over 40 percent or more of the body or face, and wrongful death of a parent leaving a surviving minor child. Applies the limitation to all noneconomic damages in the aggregate including pain and suffering, a spouse or child's loss of consortium claim, and any other derivative claim of noneconomic damages. Prohibits the noneconomic damages limitation from being disclosed to the jury. Exempts from the noneconomic damages limitation cases in which the defendant's acts or omissions causing the injury resulted in conviction of a felony, the defendant intentionally falsified, destroyed, or concealed material evidence in an effort to evade liability, or the defendant was under the influence and substantially impaired which caused the injury. Prohibits noneconomic damage awards for harm or loss of property unless otherwise provided by statute. Requires all calculations for future damages awards be adjusted to reflect net present value. Deletes language specifying economic damages shall not include charges that have been or are subject to discount or forgiveness for any reason. Requires the trier of fact to determine by special verdict if a defendant's conduct was malicious, intentional, fraudulent, or reckless when punitive damages are being sought and requires an immediate evidentiary hearing to determine the amount of punitive damages if such conduct is determined to exist. Rewrites exceptions to the punitive damages limitation to include when the defendant's acts or omissions resulted in conviction of a felony, the defendant was under the influence and substantially impaired, or the defendant intentionally falsified, destroyed, or concealed records of material evidence to evade liability. Removes language placing the burden of proof on the claimant to show a manufacturer engaged in specified activities to be eligible for a punitive damage award. Maintains current code language creating a rebuttable presumption that a product is not unreasonably dangerous if in compliance with applicable government regulations. Allows a seller to be sued under a products liability claim when any manufacturer or distributor are not subject to service of process in this state instead of only permitting suit against U.S. manufacturers or distributors. Requires the attorney general receive a copy of a notice of appeal to a judgment on an unfair and deceptive act or practice claim and permits the attorney general to intervene. Changes the acts effective date from July 1, 2011 to October 1, 2011.

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended 04/26/2011 with amendment 1 and 2. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.


HB 1100
Montgomery
Judicial nomination restrictions. Prohibits members of the judicial nominating commission from being eligible to be nominated by the commission within the four-year period, instead of two-year period, immediately following the ending of that member's service on the commission. (H: Montgomery)

House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SJR 0045
Beavers

Constitutional amendment - compensation of judges. Proposes an amendment to Article VI, Section 7 of the Tennessee Constitution, to authorize diminishment of compensation as a sanction for judicial misconduct in office. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.

SJR 0142
Johnson J.

Constitutional amendment - restraining of judicial activism. Proposes an amendment to Article VI, of the Constitution of Tennessee, to restrain the judicial activism of state judges. (S: Johnson J.)
Senate Co-Sponsor: McNally

Senate Status: Introduced 3/21/2011

SJR 0183
Norris

Constitutional amendment - election of appellate judges. Proposes an amendment to Section 3 of Article VI of the Tennessee Constitution to unequivocally authorize the general assembly, by statute, to establish a system of merit-based appointments with retention elections for appellate court judges. (S: Norris)

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary recommended 04/26/2011 with amendment 1. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.


HJR 0062
Pody
Constitutional amendment - term limits for general assembly. Proposes a constitutional amendment to establish term limits of 12 consecutive years for members of the general assembly. Specifies that service in one house will not count toward the limit for the other house. Clarifies that time served during less than a full term to fill a vacancy is not included in the term limit. (H: Pody)

House Status: Failed 03/30/2011 in House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.


HJR 0069
Turner M.
Constitutional amendment - statewide popular election. Proposes amendments to the Tennessee Constitution to provide for the statewide popular election of the lieutenant governor, attorney general and reporter, secretary of state, state comptroller of the treasury, and state treasurer. (H: Turner M.)

House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SR 0011>
Beavers

TN Rules of Evidence. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Evidence promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 adopted.
Other Status: Sent 04/04/2011 to Senate speaker for signature.

SR 0012>
Beavers

TN Rules of Civil Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 adopted.
Other Status: Sent 04/04/2011 to Senate speaker for signature.

SR 0013>
Beavers

TN Rules of Appellate Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 adopted.
Other Status: Sent 04/04/2011 to Senate speaker for signature.

SR 0014>
Beavers

TN Rules of Criminal Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Criminal Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Senate 04/04/2011 adopted.
Other Status: Sent 04/04/2011 to Senate speaker for signature.


HR 0033
Dennis
Rules of Evidence. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Evidence promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (H: Dennis)

House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.


HR 0034
Dennis
Rules of Civil Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (H: Dennis)

House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.


HR 0035
Dennis
Rules of Appellate Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (H: Dennis)

House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.


HR 0036
Dennis
Rules of Criminal Procedure. Approves the amendments and revisions to the Tennessee Rules of Criminal Procedure promulgated by the Supreme Court of Tennessee. (H: Dennis)

House Status: Set for House Calendar & Rules Committee 04/28/2011.

LABOR LAW

SB 1351
Finney L.
HB 1520
Turner M.
Requires employers to use E-verify system. Requires all public employers to be registered with the federal work authorization program by January 1, 2012. Prohibits any employer from hiring an illegal alien. Requires all employers to check the work authorization status of each employee. Allows for private employers to either comply with the Immigration and Reform and Control Act of 1986 or to use the federal work authorization program. Sets forth procedures for employers to follow if the federal work authorization program returns a tentative nonconfirmation for an employee, prohibiting the employer from taking any adverse action against the employee while the employee contests a tentative nonconfirmation. Requires employer to terminate an employee who receives a final nonconfirmation. Establishes penalties for employers who violate these requirements. Establishes penalties for employers found to have violated such provisions, including license suspensions and publicly displaying the company's name and violations. Requires contractors to submit to the general contractor federal work authorization confirmation for any employee hired on or after January 1, 2012 and copies of two of the following documents for each contractor and independent contractor: TN driver license or photo license, a social security card or U.S. birth certificate. Broadly captioned. (11 pp.) (S: Finney L.; H: Turner M.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government deferred to 2012.

SB 1353
Finney L.
HB 1521
Turner M.
Requires private employers to use E-Verify. Requires all private employers to be registered with the federal work authorization program, E-Verify, by January 1, 2012. Prohibits any private employer from hiring an illegal alien. Requires all private employers to check the work authorization status of each employee hired on or after January 1, 2012. Allows for public employers to either comply with the Immigration and Reform and Control Act of 1986 or to use E-Verify. Sets forth procedures for employers to follow if the federal work authorization program returns a tentative nonconfirmation for an employee, prohibiting the employer from taking any adverse action against the employee while the employee contests a tentative nonconfirmation. Requires employer to terminate an employee who receives a final nonconfirmation. Establishes penalties for employers who violate these requirements, and requires the commissioner of labor and workforce development to maintain on its web site a public database of private employers who violate these requirements and to post notice of public employers with violations. Requires contractors to submit to the general contractor E-Verify confirmation for any employee hired on or after January 1, 2012 and copies of two of the following documents for each contractor and independent contractor: TN driver license or photo license, a social security card or U.S. birth certificate. Broadly captioned. (11 pp.) (S: Finney L.; H: Turner M.)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government deferred to 2012.

SB 1669
Tracy
HB 1378
Carr
Tennessee Lawful Employment Act. Requires all employers to enroll and maintain participation in the E-Verify program. Requires all employers to check the work authorization status of each employee hired on or after October 1, 2011. Creates office of employment verification assistance within the department of labor and workforce development. Requires employers to be penalized according to the "False Claims Act" when submitting fraudulent documents. Requires a statewide auditing program to inspect employer compliance. Establishes procedures to investigate complaints. Prohibits employers from hiring unauthorized aliens. Requires certain contractors to receive an affidavit from their subcontractors stating full compliance with this section. Requires notification to the United States immigration and customs enforcement of any employer found in violation. Requires notification to the immigration and customs enforcement and local law enforcement if an unauthorized alien is found working for an employer. Provides for suspension and revocation of business licenses for violations. Requires the commissioner of labor and workforce development to maintain on its web site a public database of employers who violate these requirements. Broadly captioned. (21 pp.) (S: Tracy; H: Carr)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Beavers
House Co-Sponsors: Maggart; Matheny; Shipley; White M.; Watson E.; Sexton; Casada; Miller D.; Floyd; Lollar; Weaver; Womick; Campbell S.; Sparks; Pody; Rich; Hensley; Hill; Hurley; Wirgau; Ragan; Keisling; Gotto; Hall; Butt; Coley; Todd; Faison; Williams R.; Forgety; Ford D.; Holt; Eldridge; Brooks, Harry; Swann; Cobb J.; Dean; McManus; Hawk; Evans; Powers; Sanderson; Matlock; Halford; Harrison; Elam; Alexander; Brooks, Kevin; Dennis; Williams K.
Amendment: Senate Commerce, Labor and Agriculture amendment 1 no longer deletes the current code providing rules for complaints, investigations, hearings, and penalties for the employment of illegal aliens. Requires the commissioner to notify the department of homeland security and the commissioner of finance and administration of a person found in violation for employing an illegal alien. Narrows the definition of private employer to include persons required to complete a remuneration tax form instead of persons who have applied for a license in the state in addition to various definition changes. Lengthens all deadlines regarding compliance with E-verify enrollment, participation, and work status verification requirements from October 1, 2011 to January 1, 2012. Requires enrollment in the program prior to employing a person instead of by a specific date. Requires employers to maintain a copy of a valid Tennessee driver's license, photo identification, or out-of-state identification meeting specified standards for non-employees. Requires an employer to maintain employee and non-employee records for three years after the hiring date or one year after employment ends, whichever is later. Deletes provisions regarding employers without internet service and the filing of fraudulent affidavits. Requires the commissioner to conduct inquiries of compliance instead of requiring a statewide random auditing program. Requires complaints filed by state residents to include satisfactory evidence of a violation. Requires the commissioner conducting complaint inquiries to request and within 30 days the employer provide documentation of compliance. Allows the commissioner to issue either a preliminary or final order if compliance documentation is not submitted within 30 days. Deletes the imposition of civil penalties for false and frivolous complaints. Increases the time allowed to contest a preliminary order from 10 to 30 days and deletes the requirement that such hearings be completed within 60 days. Permits instead of requires specified civil penalties or license suspension for first and subsequent violations. Deletes violations for knowingly employing an unauthorized alien or using a contract, subcontract, or independent contractor agreement to obtain the labor of an unauthorized alien. Allows the department to pursue sanctions against employers who knowingly misclassify a person as a non-employee to avoid statutory requirements. Deletes document requirements placed on general contractors and sub contractors entering in to contracts with another contractor. Deletes employer exemptions from civil liability for terminating an employee to comply with this section. House State and Local Government amendment 1 deletes the original bill. Requires employers to enroll in the federal E-verify program and verify the work authorization status of all employees hired after January 1, 2012. Requires the Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DLWD) to establish an Office of Employment Verification Assistance to assist employers without internet access to verify employees; authorizes DLWD to hire no more than one person to staff the Office. Prohibits the employment of unauthorized aliens. The penalty for a first violation is a $1,000 civil penalty for each unauthorized employee; for a second violation, a $2,500 civil penalty; for a third violation, a $5,000 civil penalty. Authorizes the Commissioner of DLWD to issue a warning in lieu of penalties if the employer remedies the violation within 30 days and a determination is made that the violation was unintentional. Requires DLWD to notify employers of alleged violations if there is satisfactory evidence of a violation in a received complaint. Requires employers to provide documentation showing compliance if a notification of violation is received. Requires DLWD to make inquiries into employers' compliance with requirements in conjunction with any pending investigations or inquiries. Requires DLWD to list publicly on its website, a list of employers in violation. Requires proof of E-verify enrollment prior to any private employer receiving economic development incentives. Creates the Lawful Employment Enforcement Fund, to which all penalties collected pursuant to this bill will be deposited, and from which funds will be used to administer the provisions of this bill.

Senate Status: Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture recommended 04/05/2011 with amendment 1, as amended. Sent to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.
House Status: House Government Operations 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Finance, Ways & Means.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT

SB 1937
McNally
HB 1350
Hurley
Prohibits lease of property to unlawfully present persons. Allows municipalities, counties, and metropolitan governments to prohibit landlords from leasing real property to persons unlawfully present in the United States by resolution or ordinance. Requires the attorney general to draft and defend such resolutions and ordinances upon written request by the government entity. (S: McNally; H: Hurley)
House Co-Sponsor: Campbell

Senate Status: Referred to Senate State & Local Government.
House Status: Taken off notice 03/23/2011 in House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.

SJR 0044
Beavers

Constitutional amendment - election of county officers. Proposes an amendment to the state constitution in order to move the election of county officers and judges from August to November. (S: Beavers)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.

MEDIA & PUBLISHING

SB 0115
Campfield
HB 0284
Dennis
Electronic Publication of Legal Notices Act. Enacts the Electronic Publication of Legal Notices Act which, creates a pilot project in Knox county to allow legal notices to be posted on the Internet rather than in a newspaper. Establishes the requirements and conditions for publishing such notices on an official government website. Requires the government agency to keep and make available for public inspection all records of complaints and service accessibility failures reported. (S: Campfield; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Senate State & Local Government deferred to summer study.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary deferred to 2012.

SB 0750
Tracy
HB 0465
Watson E.
Internal audit confidential working papers clarification. Clarifies the definition of confidential working papers created or obtained by the internal audit staff includes auditee records, intra-agency and interagency communications, draft reports, schedules, notes, memoranda and other records relating to an audit or investigation. (S: Tracy; H: Watson E.)

Senate Status: Senate 03/24/2011 passed.
House Status: House passed 04/21/2011.
Other Status: Sent to governor 04/27/2011.

PROFESSIONS & LICENSURE

SB 0551
McNally
HB 0740
Sargent
Revocation of license for failure to pay student loan. Requires each licensing authority to suspend, deny, or revoke the license of any person who has defaulted on a repayment or service obligation under any state or federal educational loan or service-conditional scholarship program (guaranteed student loan), upon receiving a copy of a final order from TSAC or the guarantee agency. Under this bill, unless a debtor has made satisfactory arrangements according to the lender, TSAC or the guarantee agency, which may include administrative wage garnishment, voluntary payment arrangements, or deferment or forbearance, then the debtor would be regarded as delinquent or in default. If a debtor is delinquent or in default on a repayment or service obligation under a guaranteed student loan, or the debtor has failed to enter into a payment plan, agree to a service obligation, or comply with a payment plan previously approved by TSAC or the guarantee agency, then TSAC or the guarantee agency must issue to the debtor a notice of intent to file an order with the appropriate licensing authority to seek to suspend, deny or revoke the debtor's license. The notice must be served upon the debtor personally or by certified mail with return receipt requested and state that the debtor's license will be suspended, denied or revoked 90 days after service unless within that time the debtor: (1) Pays the entire debt stated in the notice; (2) Enters into a payment plan or service obligation or complies with a payment plan previously entered into and approved by TSAC or the guarantee agency; (3) Requests and qualifies for deferment, forbearance or other satisfactory compliance; or (4) Requests a hearing before TSAC or the guarantee agency. The request must be received by TSAC or the guarantee agency within 20 days of the date the notice is served. This bill details the manner in which such an administrative hearing will be held. If a debtor, without good cause, fails to respond to the notice of intent, fails to timely request a hearing, or fails to appear at a regularly scheduled hearing, then TSAC or the guarantee agency will enter a final decision and order, requesting suspension, denial or revocation of the debtor's license, and further requesting the licensing authority to order the debtor to refrain from engaging in the licensed activity. TSAC or the guarantee agency must send a copy of the order to the licensing authority and the debtor. When TSAC or the guarantee agency determines that the debt is paid in full or the debtor has entered into a payment plan, entered into a service obligation, is otherwise in satisfactory compliance, or has complied with a payment plan previously approved by TSAC or the guarantee agency, TSAC or the guarantee agency would enter an order requesting that the licensing authority terminate the order suspending, denying or revoking the license. TSAC or the guarantee agency must send a copy of the order to the licensing authority and the debtor. When the license is reinstated, the licensing authority may not impose a reinstatement fee that exceeds $50.00. The above provisions would also apply to persons who register as an athlete agent or lobbyist or who apply for registration as an athlete agent. The "licensing authority" is the secretary of state with regard to an athlete agent, and the Tennessee ethics commission or other governmental body authorized by statute to register lobbyists with regard to a lobbyist. Adds that an application for registration as an athlete agent must include a list of all student loans or service-conditional scholarships that require a service obligation for forgiveness or repayment of all or part of the loan or service-conditional scholarship for which there is an outstanding balance owed by the applicant or for which the service obligation has not been completed by the applicant at the time of application. Requires the state board of education to establish guidelines, through the promulgation of rules and regulations, to suspend, deny or revoke the license or certificate of a teacher who is delinquent or in default on a repayment or service obligation under a guaranteed student loan or if such teacher has failed to enter into a payment plan or comply with a payment plan previously approved by TSAC or a guarantee agency. Authorizes TSAC to promulgate necessary rules and regulations to determine whether any lawyer who is licensed by the Tennessee Supreme Court, or any person who is licensed in any other profession, trade, occupation, business or industry licensed by any agency in Tennessee, is delinquent or in default on any service obligation or repayment under any federal family education loan program, the Federal Higher Education Act, a student loan guaranteed or administered by TSAC or any other state or federal educational loan or service-conditional scholarship program. This bill would take effect upon becoming a law for purposes of promulgating rules and regulations and on January 1, 2012, for all other purposes. Broadly Captioned. (16 pp.) (S: McNally; H: Sargent)
Amendment: House Commerce General Subcommittee amendment 1, Senate Commerce, Labor and Agriculture amendment 1 adds that an application for registration as a lobbyist or an athlete agent shall include the person's name and birthdate and last four digits of the person's social security number, provided that the social security number is not a public record.

Senate Status: Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture recommended 04/26/2011 with previously adopted amendment 1. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: House Commerce deferred to last calendar.

SB 0971
Beavers
HB 1465
McCormick
Revocation of attorney's license procured by fraud. Increases time period from two years to five years in which the supreme court may revoke an attorney's license that was procured by fraud. (S: Beavers; H: McCormick)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1158
Norris
HB 0758
Todd
License requirements, brokers, lenders, and loan servicers. Removes present law prohibition against contractors and persons engaged in the home remodeling business engaging in the business of making residential mortgage loans or of being a mortgage loan servicer or mortgage loan broker. Adds the following exemptions to the licensure requirement for acting as a mortgage lender, mortgage loan broker or mortgage loan servicer; provided, however that the following exemptions will not apply if doing so would conflict with the requirements of the federal Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act of 2008: (1) Any individual who, as seller of the individual's own real property, receives or makes in any consecutive twelve-month period five or fewer residential mortgage loans and who does not hold out to the public as being in the mortgage lending business; (2) An individual engaged solely in commercial real estate lending or an individual who provides financing on property that is not intended to be, and is not in fact, owner occupied by the person receiving the financing; (3) Any person who makes a mortgage loan to an employee of such person as an employment benefit, employment incentive, or relocation package; and (4) Any individual doing any act related to mortgage loans pursuant to an order of any court of competent jurisdiction. Exempts from the licensure requirement any individual who performs only real estate brokerage activities and is licensed pursuant to the Tennessee Real Estate Broker License Act of 1993, unless the individual is compensated by a mortgage lender, a mortgage loan broker, a mortgage loan originator or by any agent of the mortgage lender, mortgage loan broker or mortgage loan originator. (S: Norris; H: Todd)
Amendment: House amendment 1 prohibits contractors, home improvement contractors, or other persons who supply materials and render services in the improvement of real property from engaging in the business of making residential mortgage loans, or from being a mortgage loan servicer for a mortgage loan broker in this state. Exempts from mortgage lending licensure requirements attorneys compensated by a mortgage lender, mortgage loan broker, or a mortgage loan originator or by the lender's, broker's or originator's agents and persons performing land title insurance services in connection with a closing of a sale transaction. Specifies that no person shall be exempt from the licensure requirements if such person makes more than five residential mortgage loans in a consecutive twelve-month period. Authorizes the exemption if an individual subdivides a vacant tract of property as long as financing does not include the cost of constructing a dwelling.

Senate Status: Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture recommended 04/26/2011 with amendment 1. Sent to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: House 04/25/2011 passed with amendment 1. House amendment 1 prohibits contractors, home improvement contractors, or other persons who supply materials and render services in the improvement of real property from engaging in the business of making residential mortgage loans, or from being a mortgage loan servicer for a mortgage loan broker in this state. Exempts from mortgage lending licensure requirements attorneys compensated by a mortgage lender, mortgage loan broker, or a mortgage loan originator or by the lender's, broker's or originator's agents and persons performing land title insurance services in connection with a closing of a sale transaction. Specifies that no person shall be exempt from the licensure requirements if such person makes more than five residential mortgage loans in a consecutive twelve-month period. Authorizes the e

PROPERTY & HOUSING

SB 0017
Norris
HB 1564
Sargent
Mortgage-related licensure exemptions Exempts individuals who make five or less mortgages within a twelve month period and individuals who receive one or more mortgages, deeds of trust, or other security instruments on real estate as security for a purchase money obligation from certain mortgage-related licensure. (S: Norris; H: Sargent)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Commerce, Labor & Agriculture.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Commerce.

SB 1066
Barnes
HB 1155
Dennis
Changes to foreclosure procedures. Requires the secretary of state to file all foreclosure notices, maintain a free to the public foreclosure searchable system, maintain a web site page for posting notices of foreclosure, and maintain a certified list of newspaper publications. Requires the trustee or other person selling the interest in the property to file a notice of foreclosure with the secretary of state and advertise the sale in a certified newspaper of general circulation in the county where the sale is going to occur. Establishes that notice requirements detailed in a mortgage, deed of trust, or other legal instruments regarding newspaper publications are satisfied if the newspaper is on the referenced list and distributed in the county where the property is located. Specifies what foreclosure notices and notices of foreclosures must contain. Allows judicial or trust sales to be adjourned and rescheduled one or more times, if certain conditions are satisfied. Allows the party conducting the sale to dispose of the property in additional ways. Makes other changes related to foreclosure. (13 pp.) (S: Barnes; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1845
Finney L.
HB 1644
Dennis
Prohibition of Covenants Providing for Transfer Fees Act. Creates the Prohibition of Covenants Providing for Transfer Fees Act of 2011 which renders ineffective any transfer fee covenant recorded after passage of this bill, against effected real property or subsequent owners, purchasers or mortgagees with interest in the property. Defines transfer fee covenant as a covenant attached to the land binding current and successive owners to pay a fee to a third party for any transfers of interest in the property and provides for detailed exclusions to the definition. (S: Finney L.; H: Dennis)
Amendment: House amendment 1 specifies that "transfer fee covenant" does not include a document's provision requiring a payment of a fee or charge to an association, in addition to, the association's managing agent. House amendment 2 specifies that "transfer fee covenant" does not include agreements where certain fees are charged by an association or the association's agent for a service rendered contemporaneously with the fee.

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: House 04/11/2011 passed with amendments 1 and 2.

PUBLIC EMPLOYEES

SB 0828
Ketron
HB 1724
Dennis
Employment of legal counsel by the governor. Allows governor to employ additional counsel to the attorney general or in lieu of the attorney general if the governor determines it is in the interest of the state following consultation with the attorney general. (S: Ketron; H: Dennis)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Ramsey R.

Senate Status: Re-referred 04/14/2011 to Senate Calendar Committee.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.

SB 1211
Yager
HB 1073
Rich
Creates office of solicitor general. Creates the office of solicitor general of Tennessee. Requires that the solicitor general be elected by popular vote beginning in the November 2012 election, serve a four year term for a maximum of two consecutive terms, and meet specified qualifications. Requires the solicitor general to perform enumerated duties currently placed on the attorney general and reporter concerning representation of state agencies and investigative authority. Provides rules governing the solicitor's compensation and filling office vacancies. Requires personnel, equipment and resources associated with the duties assigned to the solicitor general to be transferred from the office of the attorney general. Directs the Tennessee Code Commission to reorganize the location of provisions regarding the attorney general and reporter. (S: Yager; H: Rich)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Government Operations.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary deferred to 2012.

SB 1212
Yager
HB 1074
Rich
Creates office of solicitor general. Creates the office of solicitor general. Requires the solicitor general to be appointed jointly by the general assembly for a term of four years. Establishes procedure to replace the solicitor general whenever the office becomes vacant. Transfers most duties that are currently the attorney general's duties to the solicitor general. (S: Yager; H: Rich)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Government Operations.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 1804
Marrero
HB 0991
Todd
Fees for actions of sheriffs and constables. Requires sheriffs and constables to receive more for serving process, seizing property, collecting money, executing bail bonds, and executing various other court-related orders. (S: Marrero; H: Todd)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House Finance, Ways & Means deferred to last calendar.

SB 2062
Norris
HB 0156
Carr
Allows governor to employ special counsel. Allows the governor to employ special counsel for the following: to defend the state in any action, to prosecute any action on behalf of the state, or to initiate any action or otherwise represent the interest of the state. Requires the attorney general and reporter who chooses not to defend the state to send a written report to the governor certifying the reasons for such decision within 30 days of receiving the governor's written request. Broadly captioned. (S: Norris; H: Carr)
House Co-Sponsor: Campbell S.

Senate Status: Referred to Senate State & Local Government.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary deferred to 04/20/2011.

SJR 0145
Norris

Gubernatorial appointment of attorney general. Proposes a constitutional amendment to provide for gubernatorial appointment of the attorney general with senatorial confirmation. (S: Norris)

Senate Status: Introduced 3/24/2011

TAXES GENERAL

SB 0342
Overbey
HB 0336
Brooks, Kevin
Changes to taxes on gifts. Eliminates distinction between Class A and Class B donees for gift tax purposes. Increases gift tax exemption by linking Tennessee to federal exemption level. Alters tax rates to range of four brackets, 5.5% for net taxable gifts up to $40,000, 6.5% for the next $200,000, 7.5 for the next $200,000, and 9.5% for amounts over $440,000. (S: Overbey; H: Brooks, Kevin)

Senate Status: Senate Finance Tax Subcommittee deferred to 2012.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Finance.

SB 0431
Southerland
HB 0519
Hawk
Phase-out of inheritance tax. Reduces the inheritance tax by 50 percent for decedents dying in 2012 and abolishes the inheritance tax for decedents dying in 2013 or any subsequent year. Renders all code sections concerning the inheritance tax inapplicable to decedents who have died in 2013 or any subsequent year. (S: Southerland; H: Hawk)

Senate Status: Taken off notice in Senate Finance Tax Subcommittee.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Finance.

SB 0583
Haynes J.
HB 0382
Moore
Inheritance tax exemption increased to $1,750,000 for 2012. Increases the inheritance tax exemption from $1,000,000 to $1,750,000 effective in 2012. Requires that after 2012 the exemption amount be adjusted for inflation every three years and that the department of revenue notify the public of any changes made. Clarifies that the maximum inheritance tax exemption for 2006 through 2011 is set at $1,000,000. (S: Haynes J.; H: Moore)

Senate Status: Senate Finance Tax Subcommittee deferred to last calendar.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Finance 03/09/2011 set behind budget.

SB 0637
McNally
HB 0462
McDaniel
Taxpayer Bill of Rights, challenges and refunds. Clarifies that actions under the Declaratory Judgments Act are not available to challenge taxes administered by the department of revenue. Clarifies that payment under protest is not required in order to challenge a state tax assessment. Adds certain rights regarding challenges and refunds to the Taxpayer Bill of Rights. (S: McNally; H: McDaniel)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.
House Status: Taken off notice 04/13/2011 in House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.

SB 1393
McNally
HB 1596
McDaniel
Remedies for disputed taxes. Prohibits courts from delaying the collection of taxes administered by the commissioner of revenue, except as provided in present law regarding taxpayer remedies for disputed taxes if the court finds that such taxpayer has complied with all requirements. (S: McNally; H: McDaniel)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Finance, Ways & Means.
House Status: Referred to House Finance, Ways & Means.


HJR 0227
Casada
Constitutional amendment - income tax. Proposes a constitutional amendment to prohibit the levying of a tax on any class of income, other than income derived from stocks and bonds, and to prohibit any tax levied on or measured by employer payrolls. (H: Casada)

House Status: Introduced 4/11/2011


HJR 0231
Casada
Constitutional amendment - income tax. Proposes an amendment to Article II, Section 28 to prohibit any state or local tax upon payroll or earned personal income or any state or local tax measured by payroll or earned personal income. (H: Casada)

House Status: House General Subcommittee of Finance 04/27/2011 recommended. Sent to House Finance.

TORT LIABILITY

SB 0109
Johnson J.
HB 0030
Alexander
Apiarists' tort liability limited. Limits liability of apiarists, unless the apiarist committed an intentional tort or gross negligence. (S: Johnson J.; H: Alexander)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Tracy
House Co-Sponsor: Casada

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Set for House Floor 04/28/2011.

SB 0138
Ketron
HB 0176
Marsh
Landowner's duty to person on land for recreational purpose. Clarifies that a landowner does not owe a duty to keep their premises safe or give warning of dangerous conditions for persons entering the property, with or without the owner's permission, for the purpose of various recreational activities unless failure to do so would constitute gross negligence. Continues to provide immunity from liability for failing to guard or warn of conditions caused by forces of nature. (S: Ketron; H: Marsh)

Senate Status: Senate Judiciary deferred to the first committee calendar of next year.
House Status: Taken off notice 03/30/2011 in House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0238
Kelsey
HB 0286
Dennis
Jobs Creation Lawsuit Reform Act. Defines "health care provider" and "health care liability action". Requires that compensation for reasonable attorney's fees, in the event an employment contract exists between the claimant and claimant's attorney, be awarded to the claimant's attorney in a health care liability action in an amount to be determined by the court with consideration to established limitations. Broadly captioned. (S: Kelsey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0249
Johnson J.
HB 0183
Sargent
Tort Reform- Medical Malpractice & Products Liability. Creates the Private Attorney Retention Sunshine Act which requires state agencies obtaining legal services to conduct an open bidding process for services, seek general assembly approval for contracts over $1,000,000, and prohibits legal fees exceeding $1,000 per hour. Creates the Asbestos Claims Priority Act which prohibits the filing of specific asbestosis related claims including nonmalignant conditions, asbestos related cancer, mesothelioma, and wrongful death unless specific and enumerated prima facie evidence is shown by medical report and filed within 120 days of filing the complaint. Restricts premises owner liability for asbestos exposure on their property, and limits jurisdiction of Tennessee courts over asbestos claims. Creates the Innocent Successor Asbestos-Related Liability Fairness Act. Sets a maximum amount of liability placed on corporations that have incurred or assumed asbestos related liability as a result of a merger or consolidation prior to January 1, 1972. Redefines and expands the definition and requirements of a products liability claim including what constitutes defective and unreasonably dangerous, the burden of proof, requisite knowledge of both the plaintiff and the defendant, actions or knowledge by the plaintiff that absolve a defendant of liability, seller versus manufacturer liability, and seller indemnity. Creates a rebuttable presumption that when a seller or manufacturer is in compliance with applicable federal law a product is not considered to be defective. Replaces the term "Medical malpractice" with "Health care liability action" which clarifies the cause of action as limited to any civil action against a health care provider alleging injury related to the provision or failure to provide health care. Requires, rather than permits, a plaintiff in a health care liability action to include a demand for a specific sum in their complaint and limits suits against attorneys for failure to collect the demanded amount. Requires that a plaintiff file a HIPPA- complaint medical authorization form with their petition in a health care liability action. Allows an award of $75,000 or more in a health care liability action be made in periodic payments per court order and by party request. Restricts the amount of fees an attorney can collect in a health care liability action when employment contract was based on a contingent fee from a maximum of thirty three and one third percent of the damage award to various percentages based on the recovery amount, starting with forty percent of the first $50,000. Requires, subject to judicial waiver, an expert witness to have been practicing in the same specialty as the defendant to testify to duty and breach in a health care liability action. Prohibits specific expressive conduct and offers to correct from being used as evidence of an admission of fault against health care providers in suits and other disciplinary proceedings concerning unexpected results from medical treatment. Limits the amount of bond or other security a health care provider must post when an appeal is pending to no more than $1,000,000. Clarifies that groups qualifying as medical or peer review committees that provide review for the professional conduct and competency of peers are not limited to those listed in the code. Places the maximum amount of noneconomic damages recoverable under a civil action at $250,000 per person, $500,000 per occurrence, or a specified number based on the amount of full-time employees the defendant employs and restricts the award of punitive damages for claims involving drugs and devices. Redefines economic damages to include provisions regarding expenses forgiven, discounted, or covered by private insurance. Requires the plaintiff to show an actual out- of -pocket loss to recover any damages and prove causation in a suit for unfair or deceptive acts or practices. (pp 40.) (S: Johnson J.; H: Sargent)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0250
Johnson J.
HB 0182
Sargent
Changes to venue, damages, and certain civil actions. Specifies that venue in transitory civil actions may be in a county where a substantial act, omission, or event allegedly occurred, instead of where the action arose. Specifies that venue for corporations in transitory civil actions may be in a county where the principal place of business is located. Removes venue for corporations within counties where the corporation has an office or agency located. Requires that each joined plaintiff must independently establish venue. Requires courts to dismiss certain claims, instead of adjudicating under forum non conveniens. Requires courts to consider certain factors when considering to dismiss an action or transfer venue under forum non conveniens. Specifies that it is a Class A misdemeanor to prevent a juror from serving jury duty or to require a juror to use annual, vacation, or sick leave to respond to a summons. Alters joint and several liability on multiple tortfeasors. Caps noneconomic damages at 500,000 dollars in medical malpractice lawsuits. Alters product liability actions to require the plaintiff to prove certain additional evidence, allow the product seller to be indemnified by the manufacturer in certain situations. Caps noneconomic damages at 1,000,000 dollars on all civil actions. Prohibits property owners or occupants from liability regarding certain injuries to independent contractors occurring on the property. Specifies how and when punitive damages can be awarded in certain actions. Caps punitive damages in certain actions at an amount depending on the defendant's net worth. (15 pp.) (S: Johnson J.; H: Sargent)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0339
Tracy
HB 0567
Dennis

Public Chapter (PDF)
Tort liability limits for bovine owners. Limits a bovine owner's liability for injuries, loss, damage or death of another resulting from bovine activities if the bovine owner maintains proper warning notice on signs, maintains proper fences and enclosures, or does not commit a willful or wanton act. (S: Tracy; H: Dennis)
Senate Co-Sponsors: Haile; Overbey; Gresham; Burks
Amendment: Senate amendment 1 changes the standard of conduct that, when applied to an act or omission committed by a bovine owner that causes injury, loss, damage, or death, will not be eligible for prevention or limitation of liability under this bill from "willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the person" to "negligent disregard for the safety of the person". House amendment 1 restores the bill's original language, changing the standard of conduct that, when applied to an act or omission committed by a bovine owner that causes injury, loss, damage, or death, will not be eligible for prevention or limitation of liability under this bill back to "willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the person".

Senate Status: Senate 03/31/2011 concurred in House amendment 1.
House Status: House 03/17/2011 passed with amendment 1.
Other Status: Enacted as Public Chapter 0074 (effective 04/14/2011).

SB 0386
Kelsey
HB 0363
Dennis
Jobs Creation Lawsuit Reform Act. Enacts the "Jobs Creation Lawsuit Reform Act." Caps the reasonable attorney fees in medical liability/malpractice actions to 40 percent of the first 50,000 dollars in damages recovered, 33 and one-third percent of the next $50,000 in damages recovered, 25 percent of the next $500,000 in damages recovered, and 15 percent of any amount by which the recovery exceeds $600,000. (Broadly captioned.) (S: Kelsey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0648
Southerland
HB 1165
Hawk
Governmental immunity for injuries caused by county roads. Grants governmental immunity from tort liability for injuries caused by unsafe conditions on unpaved county roads on which the use of off-highway vehicles is permitted. (S: Southerland; H: Hawk)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

SB 0696
Faulk
HB 1018
Dennis
Punitive damages in civil actions. Declares as reasonable attorney's fees of up to one-third the amount of a punitive damages award. Requires that any award of punitive damages in a civil action be divided equally between the plaintiff and the state. Specifies that the state's portion may be applied as an offset against the amount of fees charged the state and that moneys beyond that will be deposited in a civil reparations trust fund, to provide grants to indigent civil litigation programs. Defers collection of punitive damages until all other judgments in a civil action are fully paid. Broadly captioned. (S: Faulk; H: Dennis)
Amendment: House Judiciary amendment 1 rewrites the bill. Creates the Tennessee Legal Funding Act setting restrictions and requirements on nonrecourse consumer legal funding transactions (transaction) defined as transactions in which a consumer legal funding provider (provider) purchases and is assigned the right to receive an amount of a consumer's potential proceeds from a judgment, award, or settlement. Requires all transaction contracts to be completely filled in when signed by the consumer, include the right of rescission under specified conditions, and contain the initials of the consumer on each page. Requires the contract contain a written acknowledgement by the primary attorney that includes various statements regarding fees and requires a trust or settlement fund be set up for any proceeds received. Prohibits a provider from paying or accepting commissions from specified individuals for referrals, falsely advertising services, referring clients to specified services, attempting to effect waiver of a consumer's right to jury trial or potential remedies, funding a consumer without purchasing the prior provider's claim, charging based on percentage of the recovery amount, using transaction funding for litigation costs or attorneys fees, or making any decisions regarding the conduct of a consumer's underlying legal claim. Requires a provider to make available all principal terms of the contract in the same language oral negotiations took place upon the consumer's request. Specifies all material terms that must be included in a legal funding contract clearly and conspicuously on the front page and within the body of the contract. Declares a violation of the act an unfair, false, misleading, deceptive act or practice and allows civil penalties of up to $10,000 per willful violation. Grants priority to all liens against the consumer's legal claim held by attorneys, Medicare, TennCare, health care providers, and tort claims over any lien of the provider. Sets the amount that can be charged by a provider based on the time between the funding date and resolution date and requires good faith negotiations between the consumer and provider when a claim does not provide sufficient funds to pay the whole of the provider's fees.

Senate Status: Set for Senate Judiciary Committee 04/27/2011.
House Status: Re-referred 04/21/2011 to House Finance from House Calendar & Rules.

SB 0706
Harper
HB 1755
Pruitt
Governmental Tort Liability - Davidson County. Includes any nonprofit public benefit corporation or charitable entity in Davidson County operating as part of the metropolitan hospital authority as a "governmental entity" for purposes of the Governmental Tort Liability Act. (S: Harper; H: Pruitt)
House Co-Sponsors: Gilmore; Odom

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House passed 04/11/2011.

SB 0938
Kelsey
HB 1152
Dennis
Tort reform regarding punitives, noneconomic losses. Caps noneconomic losses at 250,000 dollars against each defendant or maximum of 500,000 dollars for each occurrence. Specifies that noneconomic losses do not include medical expenses, lost past or future wages or earnings capacity, other loss of income, funeral and burial expenses, economic value of services performed, or other similar actual monetary losses. Caps punitive damages at the greater of 250,000 dollars or twice the amount of compensatory damages, if the defendant employs more than 100 full-time employees. Caps punitive damages at the lesser of 250,000 dollars or twice the amount of compensatory damages, if the defendant employs 100 full-time employees or less. Specifies that such caps on punitive damages does not apply to certain actions. Specifies that each monetary figure will be adjusted at three-year intervals according to the Consumer Price Index rate. Specifies that such punitive damages caps do not apply to certain tort actions involving intentional or knowing mental states and when the defendant has been convicted of a felony that has one of the intentional or knowing mental states. Prohibits punitive damages in cases where the injury was caused by a drug or device that was approved by the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act or the Federal Public Health Service Act or was an over-the-counter drug marketed according to federal regulation and the drug meets other conditions. Places the burden on plaintiffs seeking to prove discrimination in employment or retaliatory discharge at various levels regarding certain issues throughout the trial process. (S: Kelsey; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: House Judiciary Committee deferred to the last calendar meeting.

SB 1054
Barnes
HB 1639
Dennis
Personal injury action - medical expenses and evidence. Prohibits from evidence in a personal injury or wrongful death action amounts charged by a health care provider when a defendant or defendant's insurer has paid a plaintiff's medical bills within 30 days of receiving a copy of the medical bill or a written demand for payment relieving the plaintiff, guarantor, or decedent's estate of all medical obligations and only permits as evidence the amount actually paid by the defendant or defendant's insurer. Allows a plaintiff to recover prejudgment interest for medical expenses a defendant or insurer refused to pay but were later recovered. (S: Barnes; H: Dennis)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House Judiciary.

SB 1277
Ketron
HB 0912
Lundberg
Written liability waivers regarding recreational activities. Allows any person, including minors, to waive, in writing, the landowner's duty of care for injuries that arise from the recreational use of the land, with the exception of gross negligence, willful or wanton conduct, or failure to warn against a dangerous condition. (S: Ketron; H: Lundberg)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Withdrawn 03/07/2011 in House.

SB 1323
Johnson J.
HB 1976
Lundberg
Liability of skilled nursing facilities. Requires that causes of action against skilled nursing facilities be brought solely and exclusively as medical malpractice suits for the purposes of requirements for all medical malpractice suits, including requirements for the claimant's burden of proof. Requires all injuries and occurrences brought by such a claimant be counted as one occurrence. Specifies there is no limit on the amount of economic damages that may be recovered in such an action. Limits the amount of non-economic damages recoverable in such an action at $250,000. Specifies that punitive damages be permitted only if the claimant proves by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant's conduct demonstrated actual malice toward the claimant. Limits the maximum amount of punitive damages at $500,000. (S: Johnson J.; H: Lundberg)
Senate Co-Sponsor: Kelsey
House Co-Sponsor: Dennis

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of Judiciary.

TRANSPORTATION VEHICLES

SB 0010
Ketron
HB 0454
Butt
Driver license exams must be in English Requires that all driver license or intermediate driver license written examinations be in English beginning July 1, 2011. (S: Ketron; H: Butt)

Senate Status: Senate Transportation deferred to the first calendar meeting of 2012.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Transportation deferred to first calendar of 2012.

SB 0540
McNally
HB 1251
Matlock
TN Administrative License Revocation Act. Authorizes a law enforcement officer charging an individual with driving under the influence and various other crimes involving driving while intoxicated to take possession of the individual's driver's license issued by this state if they test positive for specified alcohol levels, refuse to submit to testing or have submitted to a chemical blood test. Requires a person submitting to a chemical blood test to be issued an interim permit valid for 90 days and requires officers to issue a notice of proposed revocation and request for a hearing to those who tested positive or refused a blood alcohol exam. Requires officers to report specified information to the department within a specified time to be used as prima facie evidence in an administrative hearing. Authorizes the department to conduct hearings to determine if a person's license shall be revoked and provides numerous guidelines regarding evidence, court dates, appeal, written opinions, waiver of right to a hearing, judicial review, notice, and appearance of parties that must be complied with during the administrative process. Grants the person charged the right to petition for stay or reconsideration of the order as well as petition for judicial review in the Davidson county chancery court. Limits revocation periods from three months to one year and requires they run concurrently with any other revocations based on the same occurrence. Provides for procedures to facilitate the return of a persons revoked license who has been acquitted during criminal trial, has had the case dismissed or has entered into a plea agreement, as well as requiring the revocation be removed from the persons driving record. Allows an officer anywhere from 90 to 120 days, dependent on the charge, to file the charges related to the revocation or the driver may request the administrative process cease and their driver's license returned. Allows persons charged to apply for a restricted license based on specified circumstances and driver history. Sets requirements for a person to have their license reinstated following revocation including fees, proof of insurance, and evidence of financial responsibility. (19 pp.) (S: McNally; H: Matlock)

Senate Status: Taken off notice in Senate Judiciary 04/26/2011.
House Status: House General Subcommittee of Judiciary deferred to 04/20/2011.

SB 1714
Beavers
HB 1014
Pody
Car seizure from person unlawfully present in the U.S. Requires an officer making a lawful stop or detaining a person who violates certain traffic offenses to seize a person's vehicle if the person is unlawfully present in the United States, but specifies that such seizure must occur only after the person cannot provide a valid driver license, the officer has reasonable suspicion to believe that the person is unlawfully present in the United States, and the officer has received verification of the person's immigration status from the federal immigration authorities. (S: Beavers; H: Pody)

Senate Status: Referred to Senate Judiciary.
House Status: Referred to House General Subcommittee of State & Local Government.


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