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News - Friday, November 18, 2016

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3 changes that have negatively impacted the legal profession
Jerry Summers gets a few things off his chest as he crosses the 50-year mark in the practice of law

Jerry Summers could buy a hamburger for a quarter and a beer for the same when became an attorney in Chattanooga in 1966. Today, lunch costs him a bit more.

Having reaped the rewards of a successful career as a criminal defense attorney, he can afford the bump in price. But what he can’t abide are some of the changes that have taken place in the hallowed venues of his chosen profession.


Broke and broken: State Democrats lose more ground

Tennessee House Democrats will have to start calling themselves the “Fighting 25,” down from the “Fighting 26,” after dropping a district in the battle to regain relevance statewide.

With longtime Rep. David Shepard stepping away from the Legislature, Democrats pretty much conceded his Middle Tennessee district as Republican Michael Curcio handily defeated Democrat Dustin Evans.


For better or worse, Dobbs defines 4-year Jones era

Tennessee quarterback Joshua Dobbs will be one of 11 senior scholarship players honored at Saturday’s 3:30 p.m. home finale against Missouri at Neyland Stadium.

Their legacies as Vols largely will be defined against Missouri and at Vanderbilt in their last games of the 2016 season – and by what happens Saturday afternoon in Baton Rouge.


Sometimes it really does take two

Some business partnerships are born with a handshake. Others are formed out of necessity. But the teaming of Realtors Sarah Brogdon and Davey Horsman was forged in the fires of two hellish deals.

Brogdon and Horsman worked different sides of those transactions, which they both say were terrible experiences. But as they plowed through the seemingly insurmountable obstacles of each one, they developed a camaraderie.


October home sales report

As we enter the final quarter of 2016, not much has changed since the year began. Market predictions have been, in a word, predictable.

A relatively comfortable pace of activity has been maintained thanks to continuing low unemployment and mortgage rates. The one basic drag on market acceleration has been inventory decline. There’s little to indicate that the low inventory situation will resolve anytime soon.


Your home inspection checklist

It’s been an active year for home sales in the Chattanooga area, and if you’re celebrating an accepted offer on your dream home, then the reality of the home-buying process has probably just set in.

And you consider the long list of items to complete before closing day, scheduling a home inspection should be at the top of your to-do list.


Intelligent sci-fi returns with ‘The Arrival’

People are going to have very different reactions to “The Arrival,” a new science fiction film about mankind’s first contact with life from ... somewhere else.

Some are going to hate it; others are going to love it. Where you fall on the spectrum will depend on your willingness to embrace a movie that has no interest in feeding your expectations but rather wants to deepen your understanding of language.


Attorneys named to roster of Mid-South Super Lawyers

Five attorneys with the Chattanooga office of Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan have been selected for inclusion in Mid-South Super Lawyers Magazine 2016. Four of the attorneys have been selected as Super Lawyers, while one has been selected as a Rising Star.


Polsinelli adds attorney James Fleischmann

Law firm Polsinelli has added associate attorney James Fleischmann to its Chattanooga office.

Fleischmann will work with Polsinelli’s team of transactional attorneys on corporate matters for clients in Chattanooga and across the country.


Mental Health Court celebrates grads

Mental Health Court last week held its first graduation ceremony since its inception last year with Judge Lila Statom presiding over the graduation of two participants in the General Sessions MHC program.

The MHC program is voluntary and open to criminal defendants with serious mental illness who are candidates for an alternative sentence. There is an emphasis on judicial supervision combined with individualized plans of social and treatment services to help participants who would otherwise be released into the community without additional support.


Put Thanksgiving lessons to work in your financial plans

Thanksgiving is almost here. Over the years, this holiday has taken on a variety of meanings, most of them centered on family, caring and sharing. You can carry these same values past Thanksgiving into your daily life – and you can certainly incorporate them into your financial strategies for taking care of your loved ones.


20th haiku conference described concisely

Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry that traditionally was written in three lines, featuring two images juxtaposed. Always with a syllable-count of 17, parsed as 5-7-5. There are other rules as well.

I include a two-hour block on haiku in the Law & Literature seminar. For one good reason: Brevity. Anything to curb law students’ tendency toward verbosity.