Tuesday, February 2, 2021

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In Defense of Maxims: The Oldest Tools in the Lawyer’s Toolbox

"There are many equitable and legal maxims," writes Russell Fowler. And "despite their continued relevance, it is easy to fall into the misconception that maxims are simply quaint but arcane Tudor-age adages of little import today … This notion is born of modernity’s ignorance, arrogance and cynicism. If one foolishly believes in their morbidity, one deprives clients of their benefit and is exposed to the artful attack of lawyers who wisely respect and master them." Join Fowler, the TBJ's "History's Verdict" columnist, in this informative and fun journey into what makes a maxim, why they are timeless, and why you will want to know how to use them.

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Sallie J. Robinson, Civil Rights Hero

In the recent Tennessee Bar Journal, we learn about Sallie J. Robinson, who sued the Memphis & Charleston Railroad Company for refusing her a seat in the ladies section in May 1879, solely because of the color of her skin. Along with her husband, she sued under the Civil Rights Act of 1875, a Reconstruction-era federal law designed to prohibit discrimination on the basis of race in public accommodations. Kick off Black History Month by reading about her bravery. Also read how U.S. Supreme Court Justices John Marshall Harlan and Justice Joseph Bradley were involved, in this story by David L. Hudson Jr. Watch for more articles in celebration of Black History Month in upcoming issues of TBA Today.

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Flexibility, Thy Name is Purpose Trusts

In his recent Journal column, "Where There's a Will," Dan Holbrook writes about Purpose Trusts. If you haven't seen one you're not alone, but Holbrook explains them in detail. "A successful non-charitable purpose trust needs a sufficient purpose, enforceability and careful drafting," he writes. "Purpose trust purposes can be almost anything imaginable. Consider that the Tennessee Uniform Trust Code (TUTC) requires only that the purpose be lawful and possible to achieve and (unlike the UTC) does not require that the purpose not be contrary to public policy."

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TBA Podcast Network Offers Engaging, Relatable Content

From attorney well-being tips to feature stories on Tennessee attorneys or a monthly recap of legal news and bar association events — the TBA Podcast Network has a little something for everyone! Don’t miss out on the network’s roster of podcasts, including HealthyBar, Legislative Updates, BarBuzz, Sidebar and the TBA YLD Presents: War Stories. All shows are available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play Sticher, the TBA’s website and anywhere you listen to podcasts. Do you have a story lead you’d like featured on one of our shows? Send us an email to let us know!

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Estate Planning & Probate Forum Coming Feb. 26

The TBA’s highly regarded Estate Planning & Probate Forum will return this year as a virtual program on Feb. 26. This annual staple will feature legislative and ethics updates, a clerk and masters’ panel, and sessions on trust modifications, decanting and anticipated tax changes from the new Biden administration. Check out all sessions and speakers and register here.

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