News

Fastcase 7 New Features

A new Fastcase 7 update provides highlighting for your search terms when viewing the full text of a document. Each term is highlighted with a different color so that you can see the occurrence of each item separately. You can also turn off the highlighting function for both, and each term individually by choosing the highlight dropdown option, then selecting the ‘x’ across from the term. See this and all new features of TBA’s member benefit Fastcase 7 here.

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TBA House of Delegates Seeks to Fill 13 Open Positions

In accordance with Article 29 of the TBA Bylaws, the officers of the House of Delegates will fill 13 open positions in the House. If you would like to be considered for one of these positions, please submit a declaration of candidacy that includes your name, principal place of law practice, district of interest and contact information to TBA Executive Director Joycelyn Stevenson by July 15. Read a list of open positions here.
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TBA Debuts New Podcast Network

The Tennessee Bar Association Podcast Network launched today with the premiere of two shows-- Sidebar and BarBuzz. Sidebar is a magazine podcast featuring compelling stories from attorneys across the state. BarBuzz is a monthly rundown of TBA news and upcoming events at the local and state bar levels. Both shows are now available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, TuneIn and the TBA's website. Simply search the show title or "Tennessee Bar Association" wherever you listen to podcasts. Do you have a story lead you'd like to submit for a future episode? Submit your ideas here!

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Animal Rights Groups File Lawsuit Challenging 'Ag-Gag' Law

The Animal Legal Defense Fund, Animal Equality, Center for Biological Diversity and Food Chain Workers Alliance have filed a lawsuit challenging Arkansas’ ‘ag-gag law,’ which prohibits undercover investigations at factory farms and other businesses in the state. Enacted in 2017, the law could make whistleblowers subject to steep fines for violations. Plaintiffs in the case argue that the law is unconstitutional and a violation of First Amendment rights. Named as defendants in the suit are meat providers Peco Foods, Inc. and Prayer Creek Farm.

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FBI Details Process of Civil Forfeiture for Animals that are Victims in Crimes

A recent piece by the FBI details the civil forfeiture process regarding animals that are victims of crime. The story highlights cross-agency efforts between U.S. Marshals Service, animal rescue organizations, federal agents and Department of Justice prosecutors and federal forfeiture attorneys, particularly in the case of breaking up dog fighting rings. Previously, most dogs found in fighting operations were euthanized; however, application of civil asset forfeiture laws allow the agencies to provide services while the criminal trial is underway. FBI operations involving animal seizures are conducted with animal rescue organization that are notified in advance, so they be prepared to care for the animals.

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U.S. House to Consider Additional Funding for Animal Protection Laws

Three amendments to a U.S. House appropriations bill — H.R. 3055 — would provide additional funding for enforcement of laws protecting animals, The Tennessean reports. Among the initiatives that will benefit from an increased budget is legislation introduced by Tennessee Republican senators Lamar Alexander and Marsha Blackburn, known as the Horse Protection Amendments Act of 2019. The act provides additional protections for Tennessee walking horses from being subject to soring, a process where chemicals or foreign objects are put on or into a horse's hooves to produce a higher gait. Voting on the appropriations bill is expected to begin today.

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Compiled & Edited Tennessee Laws Pertaining to Animals 2018

The 2018 edition of 'Compiled & Edited Tennessee Laws Pertaining to Animals' is now available for purchase. This helpful reference volume is compiled and edited by the Companion Animal Initiative of Tennessee with statute editing by the Student Animal Legal Defense Fund at UT College of Law. Though the form still references the 2016 edition, you can use it to order the 2018 edition. 

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Use Your Prepaid TBA CLE Credits Before Monday!

TBA members have until June 30 to use the 2018-2019 CLE credits that come with their memberships. Use the credits now to register for any TBA course taking place this summer or fall, or any online course, as long as you register by June 30. Don’t let these valuable credits go to waste! Find more information on how to use your credits, and if you haven’t done so already, remember to renew your TBA membership for the upcoming year to get more CLE credits.
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Full Upgrade to Fastcase 7 Coming July 22

The TBA will be upgrading to Fastcase 7 — the latest in legal research technology — on July 22. Start the transition by reviewing the helpful resource page to learn new and advanced research tools and view training videos and reference guides. Did you know that as a member benefit Fastcase also offers research assistance? Use the LiveChat feature located on the Fastcase website, email support@fastcase.com or call 866-773-2782, Option 2, to speak with a research attorney. 
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ARC Receives Custody of Seized Animals

The Animal Rescue Corps (ARC) last week earned custody of the nearly 200 animals seized from a breeder’s operation in Carroll and Putnam counties. ARC worked with the Sheriff’s Office in both counties to rescue the animals, which included dogs, cats, rabbits, chinchillas and ferrets. The animals have received treatment and vaccinations and will now be placed with rescues and shelters awaiting adoption. ARC will soon publish a list of placement partners on its Facebook page for people wishing to foster or take in the animals.

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Man Mauled by Emotional Support Dog Sues Owner, Airline

A Delta Air Lines passenger who was attacked by another traveler’s emotional support dog is now suing both the owner and the airline, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports. In the complaint, Marlin Jackson alleges that the dog pinned him against the plane’s window and viciously mauled his face, necessitating 28 stitches and causing permanent injury and loss of sensation in his face. Following the attack, Delta changed its support animal policy and now requires a “confirmation of animal training” form and other documents. Jackson asks restitution for “severe physical pain and suffering,” emotional distress and mental anguish, loss of income or earning potential, and substantial medical bills. Delta did not comment on the lawsuit.

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Animal Law Forum a Success

The Tennessee Bar Association’s Animal Law Section held its most recent forum at the Nashville Zoo on May 22, garnering praise and more than doubling attendance from the previous year. Attendees enjoyed top-notch programming, explored the zoo and made a couple of new friends. Stay tuned for more exciting events to come from the section!

OFFICERS
Dusty King, Section Chair, King & King, Jackson
Shannon Romain, Vice-chair, attorney at law, Nashville
 
MIDDLE TENNESSEE DELEGATES
Julie Bowling, Tennessee Farmers Insurance, Columbia
Matt Painter, LBMC, Nashville
Daina Bray, Justice For Animals, Nashville
Steve Cavezza, Mars Inc.,Franklin
 
EAST TENNESSEE DELEGATES
Esther Roberts, Global IP Asset Management, Knoxville
Rob Simpson, Kingston Animal Hospital, Kingston
Jill Thrash, Law Offices of Jill Jensen Thrash, Chattanooga
 
          
    
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Healthy Dog Euthanized in Accordance With Will

A healthy dog in Virginia was euthanized to be buried with its owner in accordance with the woman’s will, NBC News reports. The dog was held by a local animal shelter until being turned over to the estate executor who carried out the decedent’s wishes with the help of a veterinarian. It was determined that the veterinarian broke no laws; however, it is not known whether the pet was laid to rest with the owner as Virginia state law prohibits interment of humans and pets at for-profit cemeteries and most private cemeteries typically oppose such requests.

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Free Law Books Available at Federal Courthouse

The General Services Administration at the Nashville Federal Courthouse is giving away old law books that would otherwise be removed for disposal. Titles include Federal Reporter 2d series 538-749, Federal Supplement 415-719, Tennessee Decision Sw 2d 1-716, Moore's Federal Practice 3rd Edition 1-23, United States Code Service, Corpus Juris Secundum 1-101 and TN Code Annotated 1-16. They are available for free to anyone interested. Please contact Jennifer Russell for more information.
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U.N. Report Shows Around 1 Million Species Face Extinction

A recent study released by the United Nations estimates that about one million plant and animal species are on the verge of extinction, The Washington Post reports. Compiled with assistance of nearly 150 authors from 50 nations, the report contends that more life on the planet is closer to extinction than at any other point in human history. Though the study primarily underscores the staggering loss of insects and marine biology due to factors such as plastics, urban expansion and climate change, land mammals are also suffering, with even Bengal tigers facing an uncertain future

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Tennessee's Lack of Oversight for Animal-Related Business Under Fire

Following the death of a dog found severely malnourished after a five-week stay in a Johnson City training facility, the lack of oversight in the state for kennels, shelters and other animal-related businesses is coming into question, the Johnson City Press reports. While such entities run by municipalities and commercial breeders require licensing and inspection, there are currently no laws in Tennessee governing private businesses operating as training facilities or kennels. State Sen. Jon Lundberg, R-Bristol, when asked by the paper said he believes the laws currently on the books are sufficient and the fact the owners were arrested is proof that they are working. The owners of the training camp in Johnson City were both charged with aggravated animal cruelty regarding the dog’s death.

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City of Jackson Passes Mandatory Spay, Neuter Ordinance

The city of Jackson just passed an ordinance requiring owners with pets over six-months-old to have the animal spayed or neutered, the Jackson Sun reports. The move comes as a recommendation by a special task force created by the city to address animal overpopulation and money problems of the Jackson-Madison County Humane Society — which the municipality assumed control of in 2017 and renamed the City of Jackson Animal Care — after complaints regarding the mistreatment of animals. Some organizations panned the ordinance, saying that it does not address the root of the issue and that efforts would be better focused on providing better accessibility of services and low-cost spay-neuter options. The city initially earmarked $240,000 for the new animal care center; however, city council estimates now say the actual cost will be about $1.3 million.

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Services Next Week for Memphis Lawyer, Former TBA President James Fraser Humphreys Jr.

Memphis attorney and former TBA President James Fraser Humphreys Jr. died on May 6. He was 93. Humphreys, a Memphis native, graduated from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1950. A veteran of the U.S. Army Air Corps in World War II, he practiced law for over 50 years in Memphis and was senior partner of Humphreys Dunlap, Wellford, Acuff and Stanton. Humphreys served as TBA president in 1993-94 and was also a former president of the Memphis Bar Association and the Memphis Bar Foundation. He served many years on the boards and as a fellow of the American Bar Foundation and Tennessee Bar Foundation. His family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m. at Memorial Park Funeral Home on Monday and at Idlewild Presbyterian Church on Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. before the 1:30 p.m. service celebrating his life. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be sent to Idlewild Presbyterian Church, LeBonheur Children's Hospital, Church Health or the University of Tennessee College of Law.
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Smith Leaves Pro Bono Post; Recognized for Service

Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands announced recently that longtime employee Lucinda Smith, director of the firm-wide Volunteer Lawyers Program, is leaving the firm after 16 years, the Tennessee Tribune reports. Andrae P. Crismon Sr., managing attorney of Legal Aid Society’s Murfreesboro office, has been promoted to take over Smith’s role. Smith has led Legal Aid Society’s pro bono work since joining the firm in 2003. She initiated the firmwide Volunteer Lawyers Program in 2014, helping to expand pro bono support from two to 48 counties in Middle Tennessee by developing and strengthening partnerships with law firms in Nashville. In this position, she created partnerships with law firms and lawyers that provided volunteer lawyer resources to represent up to 2,500 clients annually.
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This Week: Animal Law Forum 2019 to Feature 2 Special Guests

Register now for the TBA Animal Law Section's 2019 annual forum at the Nashville Zoo. This unique opportunity will provide updates on trends and advancements in animal law while allowing participants to network, enjoy all of the fun and activities offered by the zoo and a chance to meet the two latest additions to the organization's family. We will be joined by the zoo's president and chief executive officer, and the board's general counsel, who will discuss conservation efforts and laws affecting procurement and care for animals. The forum, May 17 at 8 a.m., will also feature two VERY special guests! Don't miss it!
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Your TBA Free CLE Credits Expire June 30

TBA members receive three hours of free CLE programming. Your credits expire June 30 for the current bar year. You may apply them to any available course here or donate them. Members can use this credit to cover all or part of the cost of live programs or on any online CLE program. (The course does not have to take place by June 30.)
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Animal Law Forum Will Be May 17 at Nashville Zoo

The TBA's annual Animal Law Forum will have a unique spin this year - it has also been approved for veterinary continuing education. Attendees will be joined by the Nashville Zoo’s general counsel who will discuss conservation efforts and laws affecting procurement and care for zoo animals. Additional topics will include legal concerns for veterinarians, consideration of animals by the judiciary, ethics, legislative updates in the area and the development and application of legal rules governing the treatment of nonhuman animals. Don't miss this opportunity to earn CLE at the Nashville Zoo alongside veterinary professionals. It kicks off at 8 a.m. on May 17.
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Veterinarians Can Earn CE Credit at Animal Law Forum

The Tennessee Bar Association will host its annual Animal Law Forum at the Nashville Zoo on May 17. This unique opportunity, approved for five hours of CLE and also veterinary CE credit, will provide updates on trends and advancements of timely topics involving animals, while allowing participants to network and enjoy the fun and activities offered by the zoo. We will be joined by the organization's president and chief executive officer, and the zoo’s general counsel who will discuss conservation efforts and laws affecting procurement and care for zoo animals. Additional topics will include legal concerns for veterinarians, consideration of animals by judiciary, ethics, legislative updates in the area and the development and application of legal rules governing the treatment of nonhuman animals. A midday lunch is included, with additional time to explore the zoo, the recently added Expedition Peru exhibit and the new state-of-the-art veterinary sciences center. Don't miss this chance to fulfill necessary CE requirements while experiencing one of the top zoos in the nation.
 
When: Friday, May 17, registration at 8 a.m., CDT
Where: Nashville Zoo, 3777 Nolensville Pike, Nashville
 
Cost for Veterinarians: $245 – includes zoo admission, all programming, breakfast, lunch and course material
Register: Contact TBA Animal Law Section Coordinator Jarod Word at jword@tnbar, or by phone at 615.277.3221
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Fed. Judge Orders Iowa to Pay Legal Fees in 'Ag Gag' Case

A federal judge last week awarded more than $181,000 in legal fees to lawyers who successfully fought an Iowa law that made it illegal to conduct an animal cruelty investigation by becoming an employee of the farm being investigated, The Washington Post reports. The Animal Legal Defense Fund and Iowa Citizens For Community Improvement sued the state over the law, instilled in 2012, on grounds the state was in violation of the constitutional right to free speech because of the ban. U.S. District Court Judge James Gritzner sided with the plaintiffs in the case, however, the state has appealed to the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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Video Draws Attention to the Controversial Act of Soring

Footage recently obtained by Animal Wellness Action — a Washington, D.C.-based organization with a mission of helping animals by promoting legal standards forbidding cruelty — shows a horse in Alabama being subjected to soring, a very painful act where the horse’s hoof and lower legs are intentionally injured to produce a high-stepping gait known as the “Big Lick.” A farrier appeared in the video driving hot nails into the tender part inside the horse's hoof, with the trauma later resulting in renal failure for the animal. Though the practice is questionably legal, and he received no punishment for the incident, U.S. Congress is currently considering House Resolution 693, known as the PAST Act, which would ban the procedure entirely. The Act, according to American Horse Publications, "would amend the Horse Protection Act to ban the use at horse shows of devices that are integral to the soring process, eliminate the failed walking horse industry system of self-policing – putting the U.S. Department of Agriculture in charge of the licensure, training and oversight of all inspectors (as recommended by the agency’s Office of Inspector General in a 2010 audit) – and increase penalties for violations."

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