By Judge Dale Tipps, Murfreesboro Someone recently forwarded me a list of pet peeves compiled by a judge in another state. The list contains seventy-eight items, and many of them pulled no punches. In the interest of promoting a kinder, gentler blog, I decided to rework the list into ten suggestions for keeping your trial … Continue reading Keeping the Court Happy and Content
By Judge Brian Addington, Gray I love telling stories, whether they’re real or made up. I found great pleasure in creating stories for my son when he was little. Often, it didn’t have to be very serious or exciting. One of his favorites was about him bouncing a ball. He wanted me to tell it … Continue reading What’s Your Story?
The Governor has closed state office buildings in some Tennessee counties on February 16 due to inclement weather. However, if you have a previously scheduled telephone hearing on that day, including a settlement approval, it is still going to proceed. Most Bureau employees are working remotely and will be on the job, including court staff … Continue reading Telephone Hearings are on for February 16, 2021
By Judge Allen Phillips, Jackson “The face is a picture of the mind as the eyes are its interpreter.”–Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman philosopher (106-43 BC). The COVID-19 pandemic has changed human interaction in dramatic ways: working remotely, home-schooling, and limited or no in-person attendance in public forums. The judicial system is no exception. Nationwide, courts … Continue reading Credibility in the Time of Covid-19
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Thanks for reading this final installment of my three-part series on appellate opinions issued last year. As the title suggests, this article revisits decisions from Supreme Court Panels. Please read them; don’t rely just on my cursory analyses. Thanks. I’ll begin with a case from the Claims Commission. In … Continue reading 2020 Supreme Court Panel Opinions in Review
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Welcome back to my annual review of last year’s Appeals Board opinions. Of course, for years to come, mention of the word “2020” will spark memories of the pandemic. But do you know how many Board opinions actually involved COVID-19? Just a couple so far, and tangentially only. But … Continue reading 2020 Opinions, Revisited, Part two
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville What a year! The memes abound about 2020, most of which contain language or images unsuitable for this forum. (Here are a few from Reader’s Digest that are less likely to offend.) But regardless of last year’s tragedies, disruptions of our work and personal activities, and social and political … Continue reading A Look Back at 2020 Appeals Board Opinions, part one
By Judge Robert Durham, Cookeville In this new world we have to share with COVID-19, many of our traditional ways of doing things have been challenged or even eliminated. One of those is in-person settlement approvals, which simply aren’t feasible while social-distancing. However, the Court’s duty remains to see that injured workers understand what their … Continue reading Phoning it in
By Penny Shrum, Court Clerk, Nashville Over the past six years, admittedly, a lot has changed in workers’ compensation in Tennessee. You have graciously adapted to these changes. We know change can be hard. But when faced with the prospect of change, we suggest you look to the wisdom of the Brady Bunch: “when it’s … Continue reading It’s Time to Change
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville When you grow up the daughter of an English teacher, alongside six siblings who all earned a degree in one form or another in English … well, you become a grammar nerd, whether or not you like it. If my older brother, the retired college English professor, saw what … Continue reading Let’s Banish Some Words
The Appeals Board will hold oral arguments in four cases on Thursday, Jan. 28 and Feb. 4, 2021, by videoconference. Three cases will be heard on Jan. 28. First, in Tate v. Doney, d/b/a Middle Tennessee Respiratory, after an expedited hearing, the trial court ordered the employer to authorize treatment with a physician of the … Continue reading Appeals Board Announces 2021 Oral Arguments
Due to the Nashville bombing of AT&T technical equipment location, normal telephone service for settlement approvals has been interrupted. PLEASE NOTE THE SETTLEMENT CALL-IN NUMBERS FOR THIS WEEK ONLY FOR THE NASHVILE JUDGES: Judge Josh Baker – 423-634-0163 Chief Judge Kenneth Switzer – 855-543-5041 All attorneys with approvals this week must contact the injured workers … Continue reading ALERT!
We’ll continue the revised procedure for everyone’s safety and reevaluate around St. Paddy’s Day.
By Chief Judge Kenneth M. Switzer, Nashville Today is the first day of winter, and just a few days remain in the year. Much has been said about 2020, and understandably the theme overall has ranged from disappointment to sorrow. It’s been a year for reflection and reevaluating priorities. As a Court, we strived … Continue reading Looking Back on 2020
By Judge Joshua Davis Baker, Nashville Today marks an important milestone in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic in the United States, as vaccinations are now available to some. This is encouraging news; yet, we still have a long way to go before the world returns to “normal.” We’re all familiar with the physical health … Continue reading Take care of Yourselves and Others
By Judge Brian Addngton, Gray If you’re Gen X or older, you likely remember the Vicks Formula 44 cough syrup commercial’s famous line, “I’m not a doctor, but I play one on TV.” The actor in that commercial was Peter Bergman, who played Dr. Cliff Warner on “All My Children,” an ABC soap opera. I’m … Continue reading “I Play One on TV”
It’s that time again: time for holiday cheer and settling cases before the New Year. To better serve you and your clients during this busy season, Judges Luttrell and Phillips of the Jackson office are expanding their settlement approval hearing days to any weekday in the month of December. To request a December approval hearing, … Continue reading Jackson Office Expands Settlement Approval Days
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville A trial court can’t award permanent partial disability benefits for an impairment rating where part of that rating is attributable to a non-work-related condition. So held the Appeals Board last week, modifying the trial court’s order to reflect a lower rating. The case was argued last month. In Hart … Continue reading Board Modifies Rating to Reject Non-work-related Condition
By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Last week, the Appeals Board held that, under section 50-6-226(a)(1), an employer can’t be liable for attorney’s fees based on the amount of medical expenses a court orders it to pay. In September 2016, Nicole Bowlin was injured in a motor vehicle accident while working for Servall. She was … Continue reading Employer Can’t be Ordered to pay Attorney’s Fees on Unpaid Medicals
By Judge Brian Addington, Gray It was a pleasure to host Girl Scout Troop 320 at the Bureau’s office in Gray on Nov. 13. Seven scouts attended along with one supportive brother and six parents. I gave them a tour of the Courtroom and the mediation offices, making sure to follow social-distancing guidelines. The topic … Continue reading Gray Hosts Girls Scouts