TBA Law Blog


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Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 22, 2021

Germantown attorney James “Jim” Barry will serve as president of the Tennessee Bar Association in 2023-2024, according to election-qualifying results released today. No other candidate filed for the vice president position by the Feb. 15 deadline. After taking office as vice president this summer, the retired International Paper attorney will become president-elect in 2022-2023 and then take over the organization’s leadership in June 2023.

In addition, there will be one contested election this spring. J. Spencer Fair with the law offices of London and Amburn in Knoxville and Glenn Walter with Lewis Thomason in Knoxville, are both vying for the District 6 seat in the TBA House of Delegates. Several vacancies in the House will be filled through appointment. See a list of all other candidates who have been certified as elected because they did not draw opposition as well as the vacancies needing to be filled.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

Belmont University College of Law associate professor Dr. Deborah R. Farringer was recently featured in an interview by the personal finance website WalletHub. In the feature — “2021’s Healthiest & Unhealthiest Cities in America” — Farringer discusses how to prioritize one’s health, what to look for in a “healthy” city, and how local authorities can improve healthcare systems. First, she says, just get moving. Find what works for your schedule and environment and do it. She also encourages more attention be paid to nutritional labels to eat more healthfully. For those looking for a healthy city, Farringer recommends evaluating three elements: environmental factors, community health factors and health care delivery system factors. 

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

A documentary about how the right to vote has evolved in the United States, specifically in Tennessee and the South, is now available from Nashville Public Television. The program, "The Fight to Vote: Black Disenfranchisement in Tennessee," focuses mainly on the challenges poor and Black people faced getting access to the ballot box in the decades after the Civil War, but also aims to spur discussion about voting rights today and why voter turnout remains low in some parts of the country. The program also features the story of civil rights activist and NAACP president Elbert Williams, who was murdered in Brownsville in 1940.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

The Tennessee Supreme Court ruled today that a lawsuit filed by Elvis Presley Enterprises Inc. against the city of Memphis and Memphis Basketball is not barred by res judicata. The court remanded the case to the Court of Appeals for further review. In 2014, Presley Enterprises undertook a project to redevelop Graceland and received tax benefits from the city. Memphis Basketball objected to the financial incentives, arguing a new arena there would violate its agreement with the city. Presley Enterprises filed suit, but the action was dismissed after the chancery court found that all administrative remedies had not been exhausted. Presley Enterprises later filed this second suit seeking a declaratory judgment that the tax financing does not violate the arena agreement. 

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

Legal organizations in Knoxville will hold a virtual Veterans Legal Advice Clinic on March 10 from noon to 2 p.m. EST. The clinic is a general advice and referral clinic which serves between 20 and 30 veterans each month with a wide variety of legal issues. To volunteer, sign up online. For questions, contact Access to Justice Committee Co-Chairs Spencer Fair or Luke Ihnen.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

Frost Brown Todd, a Midwest-based law firm with offices in Nashville, announced this week that it will open a new office in Washington, D.C., to house its regulatory and public policy practices. The office will operate virtually due to the pandemic and move to a permanent address when quarantines are lifted. The firm’s regulatory attorneys advise clients in a wide range of sectors including food and drug administration, agriculture, consumer safety, highway safety, immigration, intellectual property, real estate and opportunity zones.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

The ABA House of Delegates approved 31 wide-ranging measures at its Monday meeting, including a resolution that urges the federal government to implement programs to assist law graduates and law students experiencing financial hardship due to their student loans.  Other topics considered include the deadline by which law schools must report employment data for recent law graduates, greater privacy for judges' personal information, increased well-being initiatives, and immigration policies and practices. In addition, delegates agreed to new limits that will govern the type of resolutions that will be allowed to come before the body in the future. Under the new rule, resolutions must advance one or more of the ABA’s four goals.  The ABA, Reuters Legal and Law.com report on these actions.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

An East Tennessee man is facing federal charges after the U.S. Justice Department says he pushed against police lines and threw a flag pole at officers during the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. According to WATE, the FBI has investigated the social media accounts and online activity of Joseph Lino Padilla of Cleveland and charged him with obstruction of law enforcement, assaulting a law enforcement officer, entering/remaining in a restricted building, physical violence in a restricted building, and violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds. Padilla responded to the charges saying the group in the Capitol that day was “trying to Restore the Republic after being attacked by the cops, who struck first.”

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

The Tennessee Supreme Court is considering a case that could pave the way for nearly 200 people to be released from prison for crimes they committed as juveniles, Nashville Public Radio reports. The case involves Tyshon Booker, who was 16 years old when he was sentenced to life in prison for shooting and killing someone during a botched robbery in Knoxville. He was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to serve at least 51 years of a life sentence. Advocates of juvenile sentencing reform argue these sentences run afoul of a recent U.S. Supreme Court case that found teens must have a “meaningful opportunity” for life after prison. So far, no Tennessee court has recognized the new standard, arguing the law in question allowed no chance of release while Tennessee permits parole after 51 years.

Posted by: Stacey Shrader Joslin on Feb 24, 2021

Officials with the Tennessee Department of Health and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will oversee vaccine distribution operations in Shelby County after it was discovered that the local health department wasted 2,600 doses and found 50,000 doses sitting in storage. On top of overseeing operations, Health Commissioner Piercey said state officials will suspend their vaccine allotment to Memphis’ health department until the backlog of doses is used. Doses that typically are delivered there will instead be shipped to other vaccine locations in Shelby County, the Commercial Appeal reports.  An internal investigation found no evidence of malicious intent but a federal inquiry may follow, Piercey said.


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