In The News

Bone McAllester Norton June Newsletter

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How Litigation in Nashville is Different than in Bigger Cities

I get asked a lot to serve as local counsel on cases for lawyers from LA, New York, Chicago and DC.  (I also end up hiring lawyers in those cities.)  Sometimes we’re asked to play a minor role – some call this “elbow counsel,” where we’re really just on the case in name only.  Generally, though, lead counsel sees that we can offer valuable insight into not just the substantive law but also the local landscape.  And I assure you the landscape here in Nashville is much different than it is in larger cities.

Given the sheer size of bigger cities, lawyers there often never appear more than once in front of the same judge and often never interact with the same opposing counsel.  With the virtual anonymity that comes with the territory in those jurisdictions, lawyers have every reason to practice scorched-earth litigation.  They can be as ruthless as they want – no one knows who they are and, very likely, no one will ever see them again.

Practice here in Nashville is completely different.  Although our city is booming, we have only four active U.S. District Judges and only four chancellors at the state court level.  In this big small town, everyone knows everyone. And how you conduct yourself in a single case can be remembered for the rest of your career.  Although we advocate zealously, we refuse to stab each other in the back.   And we know how easy it is to be short-sighted.  Given the close-knit relationships here, we still litigate with a Southern gentility, or what the profession calls “civility.”  I hope it always stays this way, even as we grow and welcome newcomers from other jurisdictions.

Bone McAllester Norton Named to Top Workplace List

TWP_Tennessee_Portrait_2016_Gray_AWWe're honored to have made the list of The Tennessean's Top Workplaces!

Bone McAllester Norton has been awarded a 2016 Top Workplace honor by The Tennessean.  The Top Workplaces lists are based solely on the results of an employee feedback survey administered by Workplace Dynamics, LLC.  Several aspects of workplace culture were measured with rankings and essay questions where data was compiled, compared and provided back to the firm for process improvement as well as training and retention programs.

“The Top Workplaces award is not a popularity contest. And oftentimes, people assume it’s all about fancy perks and benefits.” says Doug Claffey, CEO of WorkplaceDynamics. “But to be a Top Workplace, organizations must meet our strict standards for organizational health. And who better to ask about work life than the people who live the culture every day—the employees. Time and time again, our research has proven that what’s most important to them is a strong belief in where the organization is headed, how it’s going to get there, and the feeling that everyone is in it together. Claffey adds, “Without this sense of connection, an organization doesn’t have a shot at being named a Top Workplace.”

For the full article, click here.

BoneLaw Attorney holds Employment Law Workshop for NACE

Stacey Garrett KojuStacey Garrett KojuStacey Garrett Koju, founding member of Bone McAllester Norton held an employment law workshop for the members of NACE, the National Association for Catering and Events.  This event was held to offer the latest and best practical information in today's world of employment law.

On Wednesday, June 22, 2016, Stacey put together a team of  lawyers specializing in the different areas of liability, estate planning, salary regulations, negligence and the latest in liquor licensing for the members of NACE.  The agenda included:

Anne C. Martin - Employment Law Trends

C. Davild Briley - Employee Liability 

David M. Anthony - Contract Essentials, Unpaid Accounts, Third Party Claims and Equipment Recover 

Jonathan R. Burns - Estate and Succession Planning

Will T. Cheek, III and Olatayo O. Atanda - Front Line Stories and Professional Tips with Liquor Licensing


Ryman Hospitality Believes in Nashville

We have all heard how Nashville is the "IT" city.  According to VP of Research, Garrett Harper at the Nashville Chamber of Commerce,  71 people move to the Nashville region each day.

Our client, the Ryman Hospitality Properties is banking on that.  In the last couple of years they have poured over $30 million into renovations and purchases in downtown Nashville.

Just last week the announcement was made that Ryman Hospitality purchased 114 Second Avenue North and plans to turn that location into a new entertainment venue.

To read the entire article in The Tennessean, click here.


WIGS: The Final Countdown

We're just happy to be here.

Wine In Grocery Stores (WIGS) is happening.  The time is near - we are about two weeks away from the July 1 date that allows businesses with the appropriate license to sell wine in Tennessee retail food stores.

The Alcoholic Beverage Commission has been churning out conditional letters of approval and retail food store licenses.  Kudos to the new Executive Director, Clay Byrd!  For the full story in The Tennessean, click here.

Our Alcoholic Beverage  Law Group has been working round the clock as well. This team of attorneys, paralegals and assistants are the go-to source for liquor licensing in Tennessee.  Led by Will Cheek - attorney, self-proclaimed foodie, and author of the well-known blog, Last Call.

Pilgrimage Music and Cultural Festival - September 24-25, 2016

We are so excited to see the lineup for this fall's Pilgrimage Festival.  A client of BoneLaw, this event is in its second year and slated to be better than the first.

The Tennessean has a great article about what the planners learned from the inaugural event and changed made as a result.  To read the article, click here.

An excerpt from the article:

What's new for year 2?

We talked to Pilgrimage Festival co-founders Kevin Griffin and Brandt Wood about what's new and improved about Pilgrimage in its second year:

It'll be easier to get a beverage: "We're putting a few more bars in, because people came thirsty," says Wood. "We noticed some (long) beer lines, and we were called out on it. We are going to fix that by adding more bartenders, more bars and the same great selection of craft beer, wine and spirits. We weren't sure how robust it needed to be, and it was impressive. People came out to party."

Griffin had to be talked into booking his own band, Better Than Ezra: "I didn't want it to be, 'Hey! I started a festival, and I'm playing!'" Griffin explains. "You know? In a spot (on the lineup) that's too high. I didn't want to give anybody any ammo (to criticize the festival), because I wanted to have a purity of the whole thing. This is what this (festival) is about. It's not about my performing career. But so many people said, 'We want you to play,' and I can get my band cheap."  Read more. . . 

Walmart Preparing for Wine Sales in Tennessee

In my research for this short piece I am reminded of an interesting fact- Walmart is the largest retailer in the world.  The World.

Walmart counts down to July 1, 2016All across Tennessee, our client, Walmart, is preparing for the sale of wine in its stores.  What an undertaking this is for them; there are 104 Walmart stores and 16 Sam's Club locations in Tennessee!

Officials said, "Walmart is making it simple for customers to get their groceries, their favorite wines and everything else they need, all in one place, and at our Every Day Low Prices."

For the full article in The Chattanoogan, click here.

For the news report with WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News, click here.

For the full article in The Tennessean, click here.

WIGS: One Less Stop to Make on the Way Home

Bone McAllester Norton partnered with Burr Forman to license Walmart statewide in Tennessee.

15 days remain until wine in grocery stores is available across the state, for many of us, this just means we have one less stop to make on the way home.

This photo was taken just after Will Cheek, Tucker Herndon (partner at Burr Forman) and Tennessee's ABC Director Clay Bird got the first of 104 Walmart and 16 Sam's Club liquor licenses for wine in grocery stores!  BoneLaw's Liquor Law Expert, Will Cheek, writes about this historic moment in his blog, Last Call.

4V5A1487L to R: Tucker Herndon, Director Byrd and Will CheekWill Cheek leads the firm’s Alcoholic Beverage Team and writes an informative and often entertaining blog, Last Call, covering alcohol and hospitality news and events.  He is nationally known as the go-to source for Tennessee Liquor Law.

Moonshine at Opry Mills?

Opry Mills Eyed for Tennessee's First Enclosed Retail Center Distillery

From:  Nashville Post

In a move that could yield a first for Nashville and the state, Metro Councilman Jeff Syracuse is seeking to amend Metro’s code to permit an artisan distiller to operate at Opry Mills mall.

Specifically, Syracuse’s move involves an update to the code that regulates the city’s various commercial attraction (CA) districts.

“We’re doing due diligence to see if it’s viable,” said Syracuse, in whose District 15 the mall sits. “It would be a great amenity for Opry Mills.”

At press time, the company had not consented to being identified, and its name is on no Metro or state documents. Syracuse, who declined to ID the company, said much work remains to be done on the effort. The Metro Planning Department has yet to finalize rezoning request documents.

“We are beginning the process of making sure from a zoning and building code perspective that all factors — such as ventilation and fire suppression systems — are considered,” he said. Syracuse said officials with the Metro Planning and Codes departments are expected to meet later this week to discuss the issue.

Robert D. PinsonRobert D. PinsonRob Pinson, a Bone McAllester Norton attorney with a focus on alcoholic beverage law, is representing the prospective distillery. He declined to disclose the identification of the company but noted it is not located in Tennessee.

“The company would like to offer flavored vodkas and moonshine,” Pinson said. “They will rely heavily on foot traffic at the mall.”

If it materializes, the distillery would be the first to operate within an enclosed mall in the state. In contrast, Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine distills at outdoor shopping center The Island in Pigeon Forge.

Davidson County is home to Corsair Artisan Distillery located in Wedgewood-Houston and Marathon Village, Nelson’s Greenbrier, Nashville Craft Distillery, SPEAKeasy Spirits Distillery and Prichard’s Distillery at Fontanel in Joelton. Metro has approximately 57 CA districts, all located within the general Opry Mills and Music Valley area in east Davidson County.

Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group owns Opry Mills mall.


This article copied entirely from the Nashville Post.