News

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. 

read more »

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.
read more »

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
read more »

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.

read more »

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. 

read more »

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.
read more »

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.
read more »

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.

read more »

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.
read more »

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.
read more »

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.
read more »

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.

read more »

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.
read more »

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. 

read more »

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.

read more »

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.
read more »

Direct Listing and Going Public

Law.com's Corporate Counsel sits down with Spotify's in house counsel to discuss breaking from the IPO route to go public through a direct listing.

read more »

Financial Services Firm Secures Patent on Storing Meeting Minutes Using Blockchain

Financial services firm Northern Trust won a patent Wednesday for a method of backing up records of meetings using blockchain technology, according to Coindesk. The method utilizes a series of smart contracts to capture data related to the meeting, including records of who is attending, when the meeting took place and where. This is the latest development in what has developed into a race for blockchain-related patents, with companies such as Alphabet Inc., Google and Bank of America trying to secure blockchain patents of their own. Information on the patent can be found here.

read more »

Velcro’s In-House Lawyers Hope Their Message Sticks

According to Corporate Counsel, fastener manufacturer Velcro's in-house lawyers recently launched a second attempt at a viral video aimed at deterring improper use of its VELCRO™ trademark. With a little  more than 1,800 views will it stick? Judge for yourself; watch the video here

read more »

Timeline for Joint Employment Rule-Making Set

According to Corporate Counsel, National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) chairman John Ring indicated this week that he wants to move quickly to craft joint-employment standards. Ring promised a rule-making process would begin as early as this summer. He also announced the NLRB would initiate a “comprehensive internal ethics and recusal review” to ensure the agency has “appropriate policies and procedures” concerning ethical obligations and recusal requirements.

read more »

A Wellness Tip from the Attorney Well-Being Committee

Consider waking 10 minutes earlier so you can incorporate a brief mindfulness meditation into your preparations for the day. Set a timer for 3-10 minutes (depending on how much time you feel you want to use). Begin by sitting in a relaxed and comfortable but dignified and upright position, with your spine and head aligned. Place both feet on the ground, with legs uncrossed, and rest your hands gently on your lap. Gently close your eyes and allow yourself to notice the sensation of sitting in the chair, of your feet on the ground, of your hands resting in your lap.

Gently bring your attention to your breath, slowly taking a deep breath in, pausing briefly, then slowly exhaling. Now repeat this twice and as you do so, observe your breath as it goes in your nostrils and as it exits your nostrils. Sense the flow of air as it moves in and out, and the space between breaths. You may notice the air feels cool as you inhale, but warmer as you exhale.

Return to your normal breathing. Don’t try to change your breath, just continue to observe it, with a sense of curiosity. Allow yourself to feel your body relax and yield to gravity as you sit quietly in your chair, focusing on your breath. Notice any tense areas in your body and with your next breath, imagine it as a cool breeze touching those areas holding tension and as you exhale, release the tension along with the breath. Continue observing your breath.

When thoughts or concerns arise – as they inevitably will – simply acknowledge their presence, without judgment or opinion, and let them pass by while you gently bring your attention back to your breath. There is no need to grab hold of any thought right now -- just allow your breath to guide you back to the present moment.

Our minds will wander, as intrusive thoughts are constantly vying for our attention. When you realize this has happened, simply observe without judgment and gently guide your attention back to your breath. You might find it helpful to label the thought – “worry” “laundry” “clients” – then let it go and return to your breath. Although thoughts and feelings will come and go in the background, you can prevent them from highjacking your attention by simply acknowledging them without judgment, then gently returning to the breath and this present moment.

Julie Sandine is a graduate of Wake Forest School of Law. She serves as the Chair of the TBA Attorney Well-Being Committee.

read more »

Knoxville Based Boat Company Accused of Violating Patent Injunction

Cobalt Boats LLC filed a motion in federal court on May 11 accusing Brunswick Corporation's Knoxville based Sea Ray brand of violating an injunction order by continuing to infringe on Cobalt's patented flip-down "retractable swim step," according to a press release issued on Wednesday. Cobalt contends that the swim steps currently sold on Sea Ray boats are not significantly different from the Sea Ray swim steps found to be an infringement in a previous trial, in which Cobalt was awarded upward to $5.4 million.

read more »

Share Your Thoughts on Proposed Amendments to Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 6

The Supreme Court recently requested comment on proposed amendments to TSC Rule 6 that would require new attorneys to complete a Tennessee Law Course within one year of admission to the Tennessee bar. The Tennessee Bar Association has a working group on this issue and will be drafting comments in response to the court's Order for Comment. To ensure this comment best reflects members’ views and positions, the groups is looking for your feedback. Share your thoughts about the proposed amendments through this form by June 8.
    read more »

    Protecting Your Company From a Social Media Mishap

    In today's social media climate the opportunity for mishaps are everywhere. Erin S. Hennessy, Annie Allison and Salsabil Ahmed of the Law.com discuss steps your company can take to avoid these embarrassing mishaps. Click here to read more.

    read more »

    U.S. Says Bankrupt Tennessee Nursing Home Chain Must Transfer Liability

    The U.S. government has objected to a plan by Orianna Health Systems nursing home chain to protect companies that would acquire facilities through its restructuring from successor liability, Reuters reports. Filed on April 9, the motion contends that the ultimate control over the legal issues surrounding the transfer of Medicare provider agreements, not a bankruptcy court — and that Orianna cannot expect a new operator to assume control over the properties without also dealing with its existing liabilities. The Nashville based company, which operates skilled nursing facilities in seven states, with around 4,500 beds and 5,000 employees, initially revealed its bankruptcy plan last month after falling behind on rent payments to landlord Omega Healthcare Investors. 
    read more »