Tennessee Defense

Lawyers Association


  • 13 Jun 2018 5:00 PM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    TDLA and DRI are currently accepting nominations for our 2018 Professional Awards.

    These awards identify your peers who deserve recognition either for their professional contributions to, and achievements on behalf of the defense bar and the civil justice system.

    TDLA will be accepting nominations through September 7, 2018 for our Tennessee "Rising Star" and "Defense Lawyer of the Year" awards and will announce our winners during our Annual Meeting in Chattanooga on October 3-5, 2018. For more information and a nomination form, please click here.

    DRI will be accepting nominations through July 1, 2018, and will announce their winners at the DRI Annual Meeting in San Francisco on Saturday October 20th. To view the national DRI professional award brochure, please click here.

  • 11 Apr 2018 8:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    Past TDLA President Brad Box with Rainey, Kizer, Reviere and Bell provided this legislative update for TDLA membership.

    As the 2018 General Assembly draws to a close, here are a few interesting updates for you:

    1. The Phantom Damages Elimination Act (Dedmon/West issue).  This bill was introduced to deal with the disappointing opinion by the TN Supreme Court in the Dedmon case.  I spoke with a lobbyist for Farm Bureau and he said that this bill died in committee because it didn’t have enough support in committee to move it out in the house of representatives.  The chair of the house sub-committee was against it and so it never came out of committee.  I suspect that it will generate more discussion next year.  Of course there are lots of contested elections across the state, so that will have an impact on the future of this bill.

    2. A Notary bill (SA0790), which I have attached, Click here to view. It will allow for documents to be electronically notarized.  It has passed the Senate and will be on the house floor next week. The attached is the Senate amendment. The amendment rewrites the bill so this is the bill.

    3. SB1862. This bill was introduced to respond to the American Law Institute restatement of liability insurance.  This bill has been signed by the Governor and is now effective. Click here to view
  • 01 Mar 2018 8:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)
    From the Tennessee Bureau of Workers' Compensation:

    The Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) now uses an innovative new system that allows attorneys and self-represented litigants to file documents without printing copies or traveling to BWC offices across the state.

    The new TNComp electronic filing system allows all parties to file contested case pleadings in a more efficient and cost-effective manner.

    Since BWC started its trial and appellate courts in 2014, both litigants and counsel have had the convenience of filing documents via email. The process was not as convenient or efficient for BWC staff that had to print each emailed document, file-stamp the document and then enter the information into the BWC database. The manual filing process took between 24 and 48 hours to complete.

    “With approximately 1,000 documents filed per month in our court alone, we had to move in this direction,” said Penny Shrum, Clerk of the Court for the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims.

    BWC modeled TNComp after the PACER platform used by the federal court system, but tailored it to meet the needs of Tennessee.

    Attorneys and litigants can now electronically file documents any time of the day, they can view any documents associated with the case, they receive notices when a new document is filed, and reminders of upcoming hearings. All of the services offered on TNComp are provided to the user at no cost.

    “The court’s core values include striving for excellence and constant improvement,” said Kenneth M. Switzer of Nashville, Chief Judge of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims. “TNComp is a primary example of our commitment, making court business more efficient for everyone throughout the process.”

    It took nearly three years to develop TNComp into a user-friendly, intuitive system. The courts first implemented TNComp internally, so staff could train for two months, ensuring a smooth and problem-free launch to the public.

    “Since the passage of the Reform Act of 2013, the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation has focused its efforts on providing the best court systems possible for workers’ compensation claims,” said Abbie Hudgens, BWC administrator. “This new platform is a long-awaited element to improving the effectiveness of the court process, and we are pleased that we can offer it to the public now.”

    Attorneys and litigants with cases where a BWC mediator has filed a dispute certification after November 1, 2017 can now access the TNComp system. Cases prior to that date will continue to use the former system to file documents.

    “It’s great to see an innovative effort like this come to fruition and produce the desired results of greater convenience and efficiency.” Appeals Board Presiding Judge Marshall Davidson said.

    You can learn more about TNComp here or to watch instructional videos on how to navigate the system, you can follow the link provided here

  • 29 Jan 2018 12:00 PM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)
    Click Here for a summary from attorney Chris Vrettos of Gideon, Cooper & Essary PLC on the oral argument in the Willeford v. Klepper et al. case heard on January 10, 2018.


  • 21 Dec 2017 12:30 PM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    The TDLA Sponsorship package for 2018 is now available! Click here for a full list of sponsorship opportunities!

  • 17 Nov 2017 1:55 PM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    The Dedmon v. Steelman case and the Tennessee Supreme Court ruling may be read by clicking here.

  • 28 Sep 2017 8:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    The Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association is pleased to congratulate its 2017 “Defense Lawyer of the Year” award recipient, Dawn Davis Carson of Hickman Goza Spragins in Memphis, TN and Adam Nelson of Rainey, Kizer, Reviere and Bell in Jackson, TN, who received TDLA’s “Rising Star” award for 2017.    

    Shown L to R: Dawn Davis Carson, Barret Albritton and Adam Nelson

  • 26 Sep 2017 8:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    The Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association installed its 2017-18 officers and directors at its annual meeting held at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis on September 20-22, 2017.  Michael Mansfield with Rainey, Kizer, Reviere & Bell in Jackson, TN will serve as President; Lynn Lawyer with Nationwide Insurance Company in Nashville, TN will serve as President-Elect; and Rocky King of Egerton, McAfee, Armistead and Davis in Knoxville, TN will serve as Secretary/ Treasurer during the coming year. Barret Albritton of Spears, Moore, Rebman and Williams will serve as TDLA’s Immediate Past President.

    TDLA’s membership also elected Heather Douglas of Manier Herod in Nashville, TN; Rob Carden with Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan in Chattanooga, TN; and Dawn Davis Carson of Hickman, Goza and Spragins in Memphis, TN to serve as its directors for 2017-18.

    Also at the meeting, three new Vice Presidents were elected to leadership positions.  Those positions will be held by Michael Haynie of Manier Herod in Nashville, TN; Hannah Lowe of Trammell Adkins and Ward in Knoxville, TN; and Nathan Shelby of Rainey, Kizer, Reviere and Bell in Nashville, TN this year.  Cate Dugan of Peterson-White in Nashville, TN will serve as TDLA’s State Representative to DRI – The Voice of the Defense Bar, which is TDLA’s national organization affiliate.

  • 24 Jul 2017 7:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    TDLA's Professional Negligence and Healthcare Section has filed an Amicus Brief on behalf of TDLA in the Willeford case regarding the separation of powers challenge to T.C.A. § 29-26-121(f). TDLA Member Peter Winterburn with Lewis Thomason is the lead on this Amicus Brief. This case has not yet been set for oral argument.

    Please find documents below.

    Brief click here

    Brief of Amicus Curiae click here

    Joint Brief of Defendants click here

    Reply Brief of Willeford click here

    If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact attorney Peter Winterburn pwinterburn@lewisthomason.com

  • 19 Jul 2017 8:00 AM | Mary Gadd (Administrator)

    TDLA Members:

    The 2017 TDLA Awards Nomination Form for "Defense Lawyer of the Year" and "Rising Star" award may be seen by clicking here.

    Nominations deadline is August 31, 2017.

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