Wilson Worley presents “Employment Law for Small Business” – Sponsored by KOSBE. on Thursday June 25

Small business owners frequently imagine that human resources issues are for big business only. In reality, any number of laws, state and federal, apply to most businesses no matter how small. These include laws governing workplace safety, wages and hours, and workers compensation. Moreover, a business doesn’t have to get very big before a number of other laws, including the …

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Recent Medical Malpractice Ruling

On May 29, 2015 the Tennessee Supreme Court filed an opinion resolving a question that may seem trivial, but teaches an important lesson. Some background: Bringing a healthcare liability action requires some technical steps not required in other types of cases. For example, Tennessee Code Annotated § 29-26-122 states that the plaintiff in a healthcare liability action in which expert …

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Follow the Chain of Command? Yeah, but…

Most employers want their employees to “follow the chain of command” and not go “over the head” of their immediate supervisor. But a recent case from the Tennessee Supreme Court illustrates the pitfalls of being too rigid about this requirement. In Williams v. City of Burns, a police captain was asked to “fix” a speeding ticket at the request of …

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Contract Provisions

Contracts contain provisions frequently and unfortunately dismissed as “boilerplate.” “Boilerplate” comes from the newspaper business and originally referred to metal sheets produced regionally or nationally and shipped to local newspapers for use on local presses without change. “Boilerplate” now describes standard contract provisions which can be changed only with difficulty. An integration or merger clause is frequently found among a …

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Modification of Alimony in Futuro

Parties to divorce proceedings cannot predict the future with greater ability than others.  Despite thoughtful planning, circumstances can change materially. In Tennessee, modification of alimony depends on the type of alimony awarded and on the specific facts of each case.  Three of the four types of alimony may be modified under certain circumstances: alimony in futuro, rehabilitative alimony and transitional …

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Is an Accident Report Admissible in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

The short answer is no.  First, the report contains multiple instances of hearsay, which are statements, other than ones made by the witness while testifying at trial, offered in evidence to prove the truth of the matter asserted.  Tenn. R. Evid. 801(c).  Hearsay is not admissible in evidence unless it fits within one of the recognized exceptions contained in Tenn. …

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Trial Victory

Wilson Worley shareholder, Steve Huret, and associate, Katie Steffen, obtained a verdict of zero dollars ($0.00) after a two day jury trial in Hawkins County Circuit Court on behalf of their client, who was the defendant in a personal injury and property damage lawsuit that resulted from a car wreck.  The defendant admitted liability for the car wreck, so only …

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Tennessee’s Drone Privacy Statute

The Tennessee legislature has adopted privacy statutes that make it a crime to use an “unmanned aircraft to capture an image of an individual or privately owned real property with the intent to conduct surveillance on the individual or property captured in the image.”  Tennessee Code Annotated § 39-13-903.  There are exceptions if the drone user has the individual or …

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Retail Giant Faces Tough Questions About Employee “Look Policy”

Abercrombie & Fitch, a well-known American teen retailer, faced tough questions from the US Supreme Court last month while defending suit for its hiring practices in accordance with its corporate “look policy.” The case, entitled EEOC v. Abercrombie and Fitch Stores, Inc., arose from facts surrounding the retailer’s alleged failure to hire a young woman because of her religious apparel.  …

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Text messages at work lol

  I was in a court proceeding recently involving a termination. The proof consisted of numerous text messages between the employee and a manager. It struck me as we sorted through the electronic discussion just how much communication occurs in the job setting via text message. It is a good idea to review your employment policies to make sure that …

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