News

Nissan Chairman Dismissed Following Tokyo Arrest

Nissan Motor Co. Chairman Carlos Ghosn has been dismissed from the company after an internal investigation found he under-reported his income by millions and engaged in other “significant misconduct,” The Associated Press reports. He voluntarily submitted to questioning last week by Tokyo prosecutors. Nissan calls Nashville home in North America, and its Smyrna-based plant is one of the largest employers in the greater Nashville area.
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Incentives For Amazon from Local and State Governments

The Tennessean takes at look at the incentives package provided to Amazon for their announced expansion to Nashville. Amazon is in store for $102 million in combined government incentives from the state of Tennessee and Nashville in exchange for the 5,000 high-paying jobs the company's new operations site in Nashville. The package is lucrative, but is considerably less than was awarded to Volkwagen, Nissan and Hemlock Semiconductor for other past economic development announcements in Tennessee.

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U.S. Mulls Doubling Tariffs on China

According to Business Standard, Recently at the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) summit in Papua New Guinea, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence took a hard line Saturday when asked about China and tariffs stating, "The United States, will not change course until China changes its ways." The U.S. is asking China for improve market access and intellectual property protections for U.S. companies, cut industrial subsidies and slash a $375 billion trade gap. With no end in sight this warning will likely be unwelcome news to financial markets that had hoped for a thaw in relations and maybe even some sort of deal at a G20 meeting later this month in Argentina. For his part, Chinese President Xi Jinping has said, "History has shown that confrontation, whether in the form of a Cold War, hot war or trade war will produce no winners."

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Mark Your Calendars!

Ex-Pilot President Denied Christmas Break Before Starting Fraud Sentence

A request from convicted Pilot Flying J former President Mark Hazelwood that he have until after Christmas to begin serving his 12 ½ years in prison for fraud has been denied, Knoxnews reports. "If the court attempted to set (prison) dates that did not conflict with any religious holidays, it would be unable to set any dates at all," U.S. District Judge Curtis Collier said. "Easter, the most important Christian religious holiday, would come just a few short months after Christmas." Hazelwood was convicted in a scheme to rip off small trucking companies of more than $50 million.

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Brentwood Attorney Edwards Honored by Association of Corporate Counsel

The Association of Corporate Counsel has named Brentwood attorney Sherie Edwards as the Jonathan S. Silber Network Member of the Year. This award recognizes participation in committee leadership, contributions to recruitment and participation, efforts in developing network programs and resources; contributions to ACC/in-house practice, and contributions to the community through volunteer work or pro bono activities. Edwards has been part of the ACC Small Law Department Network's leadership team since 2012, as well as an active member of the Network Leadership Council and ACC Tennessee board of directors. Edwards also serves on the TBA Board of Governors.
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Ex-Pilot President Asks for Christmas Break Before Starting Fraud Sentence

The convicted former president of Pilot Flying J has asked a federal judge if he can have until after Christmas to begin serving his 12 ½ years in prison for fraud, Knoxnews reports. U.S. District Court Judge Curtis Collier already granted Mark Hazelwood’s request to postpone his reporting to prison until after Thanksgiving, and now his attorneys say in a motion filed last week that it’s only fair to grant him Christmas as well. Hazelwood was convicted in a scheme to rip off small trucking companies of more than $50 million.
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Basic Tech Checklist for Firms

Law firms attempting to stay competitive and state-of-the-art need to consistently evaluate their use of technology. In addition to staying competitive, technological competency is required. In 2017, the Tennessee Supreme Court amended Rule 8 of the Rules of Professional Responsibility to include this obligation. Above the Law presents a simple and straightforward tech checklist for law firms or lawyers seeking guidance in this area.   

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S.E.C. Sues Tesla CEO Elon Musk

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a lawsuit in New York Federal Court accusing Tesla CEO Elon Musk of committing fraud by making false public statements on Twitter that had the potential to hurt investors, the New York Times reports. The suit aims to bar Musk from serving as an executive or director of publicly traded companies, such as Tesla; this type of punishment is one of the harshest that the S.E.C. can impose on corporate executives. In the Aug. 7 tweet, Musk said he was considering taking Tesla private and that the financing for this possible conversion was "secured." However, neither Tesla nor Musk had actually secured financing beyond initial conversations with investors. A 2013 S.E.C. policy permits companies to disclose market-moving information via Twitter, provided investors are given advance notice that the corporation may do so. Tesla had given investors notice that Musk’s Twitter account is one venue the company may deliver significant announcements.

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Walmart Changing Legal Operations

The Corporate Counsel blog takes a look at changes in Walmart's legal operations. At the recent annual Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel Symposium in Philadelphia, Alan Bryan, senior associate general counsel for Walmart Inc. discussed Walmart’s new cost cutting measures. Walmart has entered into partnership with LegalMation and is using software to take complaints filed against the company, generally in tort and general litigation matters, then feeding them into the system. Within two minutes, the system kicks out an answer, a first set of interrogatories and a first set of requests for production. “We’ve found that it is saving 60 to 70 percent of the time that would normally take to review a complaint,” Bryan explained. 

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Search CLE by Topic

The TBA allows you to search CLE by topic area. For example, you will see 16 options for real estate law, 17 options for criminal law and 12 options for corporate counsel practitioners.
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2018 Health Law Primer and Forum

Tennessee remains at the forefront of the health care industry, so it’s only fitting that we host the nation’s preeminent health law forum. This must-see, must-do event for Tennessee health law lawyers features timely programming designed to up your game and keep you on top of trends in the field. Topics for this year include new issues in health care as related to transgender and immigrant patients, the opioid crisis, fraud and abuse developments/enforcement, legislative updates and much much more. This year’s keynote speaker Chief Counsel to the Inspector General Gregory Demske will also detail priorities and enforcement efforts for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General. Don’t sleep on this opportunity to learn from seasoned practitioners while networking with top players in the field. Here are the key details:
 
Health Law Primer (introductory program)
When: Wednesday, Oct. 10
Where: Embassy Suites Hotel, 820 Crescent Centre Drive, Franklin
 
Health Law Forum
When:  Thursday, Oct. 11 – Friday, Oct. 12
Where: Embassy Suites Hotel, 820 Crescent Centre Drive, Franklin
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TDEC Seeks Transactional Attorney for General Law Team in Nashville

This Tennessee Department of Energy and Conservation (TDEC) is seeking a transactional attorney to join its General Law Team in Nashville. The successful candidate will serve as a member of the General Law Team in the Office of General Counsel and will report directly to the General Law Team Leader. The attorneys on the General Law Team include five experienced attorneys who represent TDEC by providing representation relative to real property transactions, procurement, employment law, liability claims, law enforcement, fiscal administration, hospitality operations, public records and legislative matters.

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Section Seeks Your Opinions on Upcoming Law Office Technology Forum

To help build programming for its upcoming Law Tech Forum, the TBA Law Office Technology and Management Executive Council is asking your opinions. Completing this brief web form will assist in ensuring the forum remains timely, relevant and on the cutting edge. Comments can be related to subject matter, length and location of the event. Please respond by Sept. 7. 

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Put TBA UPS to Work

Have you enrolled in TBA’s UPS account for members? Visit UPS's TBA page and save up to 45 percent on UPS’s broad portfolio. Shipping services include next day air, international, ground and express.
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Law Office Management Tips on Shipping

If your law office uses shipping services, your TBA membership team can help you compare those costs to TBA’s UPS member benefit. Your firm office manager can work directly with TBA staff and UPS services to enroll or transfer shipping accounts. Members can save up to 45 percent on UPS’s broad portfolio of shipping services, including next day air, international, ground and express.
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How Blockchain Technology Can Save Healthcare

Forbes takes an in-depth look at how blockchain technology can help the healthcare industry. Medical records, consent management and micropayments are three areas that could benefit from this technology. Data integrity still remains a big question around new technology, but opportunities exist to move the industry into a new age.

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Apollo to Buy LifePoint in $5.6 Billion Deal

Apollo Global Management will buy LifePoint Health in a $5.6 billion deal that will expand its rural U.S. hospitals business, CNBC reports. The deal, which was announced on Monday, will bring together LifePoint and Apollo's Brentwood-based RCCH HealthCare Partners, which also recently assumed control of bankrupt hospital chain Trios Health.
LifePoint canceled its Q2 earnings call immediately following the announcement of the $5.6B deal with Apollo. The company said that it will accept competing bids until Aug. 22.
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Destination CLE Survey

Let's take a trip! The TBA CLE Committee would like your feedback on destination CLE events. Taking a moment to complete this brief survey will greatly assist us in developing the best CLE experience for you. Please complete this survey by Aug. 10. We greatly appreciate your help with this endeavor.
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Oshkosh Corporation Expanding to Jefferson City

Specialty truck and access equipment giant Oshkosh Corporation will place a factory in Jefferson City, creating more than 300 jobs by 2021, the Knoxville News-Sentinel reports. Oshkosh — which manufactures military, emergency and construction vehicles — will take over and renovate a 500,000-square-foot building that formerly housed a John Deere plant. The factory will facilitate welding and fabrication operations for the company. 
 
TVA, the Economic Development Alliance of Jefferson County, Jefferson City, Jefferson County, Innovation Valley, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee College of Applied Technology, and Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development are named as partners on the project.
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Tax Law Forum 2018

The annual Tax Law Forum will be held at the Tennessee Bar Center in Nashville on Sept. 17. Sessions will focus on the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Topics include the new pass-through entity tax law, an overview of the changes to international tax law, corporate and other business tax changes as well as non-profit law changes.

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Vanderbilt General Counsel Anderson Resigns

Audrey Anderson has announced her resignation as vice chancellor, general counsel and secretary of Vanderbilt University, effective July 31, the Nashville Post reports. Anderson has been with the university since 2013. Deputy General Counsel Ruby Z. Shellaway will serve as interim general counsel while a search is conducted for Anderson's replacement.
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How to Reduce Legal Challenges of Employing Independent Contractors

The percentage of independent contractors has doubled in the past 10 years to 12.9 percent of the total workforce. Employment classification laws in the United States have failed to keep pace. Corporate Counsel suggests using the ABC test in classifying employees to avoid confusion. 

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Ten Millionth Patent Issued

The U.S. Patent Trade Office (USPTO) issued the first patent on July 31, 1790 for potash, an ingredient used in fertilizer. Since that day the USPTO has issued over ten million patents. On June 19 they issued the ten millionth to Raytheon for a “frequency modulated laser detection and ranging system.” To read more about the USPTO jump over to the Corporate Counsel blog at Law.com.

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Schedule Time to Read Email

A tip from the TBA Attorney Well-Being Committee

Rather than checking on every e-mail as it arrives, schedule time in your calendar for reading and managing e-mail (and leave e-mail notifications silent during the other times of the day). This will enable you to have focused time for given tasks without constant interruption and distraction.
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