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Tuesday, June 18, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

New Business Court Set to Bow in Nashville

NASHVILLE (CN) - The Music City's Davidson County will play guinea pig in a new business court experiment.

The Tennessee Supreme Court ordered the establishment of the business court pilot project March 16. The new court will hear civil cases filed after May 1, which seek $50,000 or more, and which involve internal affairs, contracts, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and shareholder claims.

The business court will not hear landlord-tenant disputes, foreclosure actions, administrative appeals and employment disputes not involving contracts, according to the state supreme court order.

"Our court system must do a better job serving the needs of businesses that provide jobs to Tennesseans. With the creation of a business court, we will have more predictable, consistent results, and more timely resolutions of business disputes," Chief Justice Sharon Lee said in a statement. "This will be a great tool to attract and retain business in Tennessee."

Performance evaluation forms will be completed by attorneys and litigants of the business court to judge the effectiveness of the new court, according to the order. The court will also "identify best practices for development of potential future Tennessee business courts," the order states.

Parties to a lawsuit in Davidson County may file a designation request to move the case to the business court within 60 days of a defendant being served. If the business court judge recommends the transfer, it goes to the state supreme court chief justice for final approval.

To move cases filed outside Davidson County to the business court, all parties must file a motion to transfer and a joint consent and waiver of venue form.

More than half of U.S. states have business courts, according to a Tennessee Supreme Court press release. The release also says Davidson County Chancellor Ellen Lyle will preside over the business court pilot project.

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