News & Articles

A Surviving Spouse’s Right to Action

When an individual dies as a result of the wrongful acts of another, there is often a question as to who gets to bring an action against the tortfeasor.  Is it the surviving spouse or is it the surviving children? In Tennessee, the law provides the deceased’s right of action passes to that person’s surviving […]

INCLUDE PUBLIC ADJUSTER ON PAYMENT TO INSURED?

The question often comes up as to whether a public adjuster hired by the insured should be listed on payments made under the policy for the insured’s claim.  Many public adjusters provide insurance companies with an assignment signed by the insured requesting the public adjuster or public adjusting firm be named on any loss payments […]

Changes to Discovery Rules in Federal Court

On December 1, 2015, several new amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure became effective.  Among those amendments were notable changes to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26.  For example, Rule 26(b)(1) now reads: Unless otherwise limited by court order, the scope of discovery is as follows: Parties may obtain discovery regarding any nonprivileged […]

Comparative Fault In Food Vendor Negligence

Tennessee courts have long acknowledged the importance of food safety.  See Bissinger v. New Country Buffet, No. M2011-02183-COA-R9CV, 2014 WL 2568413, at *15 (Tenn. Ct. App. June 6, 2014), appeal denied (Oct. 20, 2014).  Vendors producing food intended for consumption are held to the highest standard of care.  Jones v. Mercer Pie Co., 214 S.W.2d […]

New Case: Constructive Notice In Context of Premise Liability

A new case filed June 15, 2015 in the Circuit Court of Appeals of Tennessee at Knoxville found that vomit on the floor of a Hardee’s restaurant for approximately three minutes was a sufficient length of time to charge defendant with constructive notice of the dangerous condition.  The case at issue is styled Kyle Beverly, […]

Mold Claims in Tennessee – Policy Language Proves Important

Many insurance policies exclude damages caused by mold and fungi. Whether or not a loss caused by mold is covered under a policy will have to be made on a case-by-case basis.  The wording of the policy and the specific facts of the loss will control this determination. Most policies generally provide coverage for direct […]

Agent and Insurer Liability Post Procurement of Policy in Tennessee

The Court of Appeals recently had an opportunity to revisit the issue of agent negligence when procuring the wrong coverage for an insured.  In Steven Barrick and Janice Barrick v. State Farm Automobile Insurance Company and Thomas Harry Jones No. M2013-01773-COA-R3-CV, (Tenn. Ct. App. 2014), the Barricks initially obtained automobile insurance through State Farm with […]

Time Limit Settlement Demands – What is the Insurance Company’s Responsibility?

We are sometimes asked by insurance company representatives about how to respond to a plaintiff’s time limit settlement demand.  There are no direct Tennessee cases on point on this issue, though Tennessee does have certain requirements in considering settlement demands against an insured.  In Tennessee, insurance carriers who have exclusive control over investigation and settlement […]

Tennessee Court Reaffirms Individual’s Duty to Take Care for His Own Safety

The Tennessee Court of Appeals recently ruled on a curious case of slip-and-fall.  In the case of Petros Goumas v. Jimmy Mayse, et al., the Tennessee Court of Appeals in Knoxville found that the Trial Court correctly granted summary judgments to the defendants.  The plaintiff was the fiancé of the daughter of the defendants, Jimmy […]