January, 2014

Cover Story

You know about the need. You probably know that an estimated 1 million Tennesseans are in need of civil legal services and don’t have the resources to pay for it.[1] And you would volunteer if you could, if you had time, and if it just wasn’t so hard to plug in.

This article is going to make it easy for you to sort through the options, understand...

Cover Story

A major component of the Tennessee Supreme Court’s Access to Justice initiative is promoting pro bono service among the state’s attorneys.

To encourage such efforts, the court will for the first time in 2014 recognize attorneys and law students who have demonstrated a commitment to providing legal services to those in need.

President's Perspective

Happy New Year to you and your family from your TBA family! I always look forward to the New Year as a time for renewal. Let’s face it, the practice of law can be difficult and discouraging at times. The issues that challenge us are many, including everything from the inability to obtain justice for our clients at times; to the difficulty of bearing...

Letters of the Law

This Is How You Do Pro Bono

Sue McClure, daughter of Memphis lawyer Paul J. McClure Jr., sent this letter along with her father’s obituary. Col. McClure died Nov. 6, 2013. Read his obituary and an article about him in the January 2009 TBJ.

… He had been...

Day on Torts

Certain folks have persuaded the General Assembly that they are entitled to special treatment in our court system. Statutes of limitation mandate that every dispute be presented to a court within a certain period of time, and, while reasonable minds can differ about whether the given time period is too short, too long or too ill-defined, reasonable minds...


Memphis city attorney Herman Morris Jr. is the 2013 recipient of the International Municipal Lawyers Association’s Joseph I. Mulligan Jr. Distinguished Public Service Award, which recognizes achievements in local government law. Morris is the first attorney from Memphis to receive this award.


Legal Aid of East Tennessee and the Tennessee Bar Association conducted a multi-city panel discussion series on the issue of Civil Right to Counsel last fall. This year is the 50th anniversary of Gideon v Wainwright, which established the right to counsel in criminal cases. There has been a great deal of discussion nationally about the lack of a...

Licensure & Discipline


The Tennessee Supreme Court reinstated the law license of Murfreesboro lawyer Brandon Michael Booten on Nov. 27, 2013. Booten had been suspended Nov. 1, 2013, for failing to respond to the Board of Professional Responsibility regarding a complaint of misconduct. After responding, Booten petitioned the court to remove...

Family Matters

The issues surrounding same-sex marriage, surrogacy, second-parent adoptions, parental rights stemming from in vitro-fertilization and other forms of assisted reproductive technology (ART) and how these issues translate from state to state within the U.S. are hot-button ones in the field of Family Law. The science that facilitates some of these...

Paine on Procedure

The modern illiterati have coined the verb “to go missing.” Bob Armstrong did that back in literate days. On Monday, Aug. 19, 1974, he left his wife Wanda (Elwanda) and two daughters and two foster sons in Hendersonville to take a trip to Texas. Nothing seemed unusual at first. Armstrong, 40, sold life insurance and traveled a lot. But on this trip,...

But Seriously, Folks

One taught us law. The other taught us grace. And those of us blessed to practice law need to learn as much as we can about both topics.

The law professor was Don Paine. His gracious and grace-filled colleague was John Smartt. They were proud, first generation lawyers, colleagues and close friends. And they died within just a
few days of...