TBA Law Blog


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Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 13, 2020

Open enrollment for TBA’s exclusive group health insurance plan — which can provide rates as much as 30% less than what you are paying — is now underway. Members have access to convenient and easy online quoting, guaranteed issue coverage, no health questions, and no pre-existing condition exclusions. Plus, members now have the option to choose a plan that includes Vanderbilt CHC Network. Our FAQ page provides information about this year’s plan, Humana’s 2021 Welcome Kit, COVID-19 updates, and access to the online quoting tool. Open enrollment ends Dec. 1 for 2021 coverage.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

More than two dozen constitutional law experts on Friday voiced support for legislation that would establish 18-year term limits for U.S. Supreme Court justices, The Hill reports. The move comes a day after Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said he would form a bipartisan group to study and recommend court reform options if he wins. The specific legislation endorsed by the group of 30 has been introduced in the House of Representatives by Democrats Ro Khanna of California, Don Beyer of Virginia and Joe Kennedy III of Massachusetts. In an attempt to not clash with the Constitution’s grant of life tenure to federal judges, the bill would allow justices to serve on lower courts after their high court term expired. The group of scholars was organized by the advocacy group Fix the Court.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

Walmart has filed a civil lawsuit against the U.S. Justice Department and Drug Enforcement Administration in connection with allegations that the retail giant contributes to the opioid crisis by filling questionable prescriptions, WKRN reports. Walmart is seeking a statement from a federal judge that the government cannot legally seek civil damages based on claims that company pharmacists filled valid prescriptions they should have known were questionable. It is also asking the court to “clarify what requirements apply to pharmacists when they fill prescriptions for opioid medications.” Walmart likened its situation to a being “between a rock and a hard place” — simultaneously being pressured by federal authorities for not doing more to second-guess doctors and by state health regulators for going too far in interfering in the doctor-patient relationship.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

The Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims announced today that it will continue with telephonic settlement approvals through the end of the year. The statement from the court read as follows: It’s been over six months now since we’ve made the change to allow for all settlement approval hearings to occur by phone, for everyone’s health and safety. Looking ahead, at least for the next two months, the altered procedure will remain in place. We’ll revisit this for 2021 in mid-December."

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

The Tennessee Senate Republican Caucus on Friday provided an update on the health of state Sen. Kerry Roberts, R-Springfield, who suffered an aneurysm earlier this month. The Tennessee Journal reprinted the statement: Roberts “remains in the Neuro Intensive Care Unit and continues to experience vasospasms, placing him at risk for a stroke and requiring him to be under careful monitoring. His medical team continues to anticipate a full and complete recovery and his recovery timeline remains within expectations for a brain hemorrhage.” The statement also said that with continued improvement, he is expected to be released this week. Roberts thanked all those who have prayed for him and sent him encouraging messages and said that because of severe headaches he has not been able to respond. “I have been touched by so many kind messages and look forward to responding soon,” he said.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

After a rare weekend session and a key vote yesterday, the U.S. Senate is set to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court tonight, The Hill reports. On the critical vote whether to end debate on the nomination, senators voted 51-48. Republican senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska voted with all Democrats against moving forward, but Collins is the only Republican expected to vote against the confirmation. Assuming Coney Barrett is confirmed, Justice Clarence Thomas is expected to administer the oath of office to her tonight, CNN reports.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

The 23rd District Recovery Court has been meeting online during the pandemic, but last Thursday participants returned "home" to the Dickson County Courthouse for a “near-normal” docket, according to Director Kevin Batts. Circuit and Drug Court Judge Suzanne Lockert-Mash told participants "Although we've continued to operate well during this pandemic, nothing compares to seeing each of you in person every week." The first in-person meeting comes after months of meeting online and at individual Sober Living Residences. Participants and court staff practiced social distancing and wore face masks, Batts told TBA.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

A new study conducted by the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division reveals substantial and widespread levels of student debt and its effects on the newest members of the U.S. legal profession. Released today, the 2020 Law School Student Debt Survey Report shows that more than 75% of the young lawyers who responded have at least $100,000 in student loans, more than half have more than $150,000 in loans, and more than one in four have $200,000 or more in debt. The study also shows the deep impact this debt has on the personal lives, decisions about family and career, and mental health of young lawyers, and the disproportionate toll on lawyers of color. Among the steps recommended to address these issues, the report calls for efforts to ease the student loan burden, including considering alternative loan servicing models.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

Memphis lawyer Keisha Moses Richardson received a public censure from the Tennessee Supreme Court on Oct. 23 after she was convicted of violating of an order of protection. The jury conviction was also affirmed on appeal. In addition, the court found that she failed to respond to a disciplinary complaint. The court determined that Richardson’s conduct violated Rules of Professional Conduct 8.1(b) and 8.4(a)(b)(d)(g) and reflected adversely upon her fitness as a lawyer.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Oct 26, 2020

The Tennessee Supreme Court imposed a censure on Mississippi lawyer Candace Lenette Williamson on Oct. 23. The court found that Williamson was paid to represent a client but did not take any substantive action on behalf of the client. She also was found to have deceived the client into believing she filed petitions in both Mississippi and Tennessee though no petitions were filed. Finally, the court found that she failed to respond to the disciplinary complaint against her. Her actions were determined to violate Rules of Professional Conduct 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.16, 8.1(b) and 8.4(a)(c)(d).


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