Selected Decisions From Mr. Vowell’s Work on Appeal
Mr. Vowell won reversal of the trial court with a ruling that enabled his client to execute on a $193,000 judgment.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of the trial court in this direct appeal to the Supreme Court, with the Court ruling that the case was not barred by the statute of limitations where the trial court had erroneously applied the “discovery rule” rather than the “last day worked rule.”
Mr. Vowell won reversal of both the trial court and the Court of Appeals with the Tennessee Supreme Court ruling that an exculpatory clause was unenforceable because it was contrary to the public interest, with the Court adopting the “totality of the circumstances” test for determining whether an exculpatory clause was valid. This was the Supreme Court’s first look at exculpatory clauses in 25 years.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of the United States District Court a second time in this important environmental law case, forcing TVA to suspend its new policy of cutting down all of the millions of trees in its right-of-way, many of them 50-100 years old.
Mr. Vowell preserved the trial court win on appeal in this mineral rights case.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of the United States District Court. The decision was instrumental in stopping TVA’s implementation of what it called the 15-foot rule, a new policy that would have removed virtually all of the millions of trees in its 15,900 mile right-of-way.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of a decision by the United States District Court in Chicago in which the Court approved a collusive settlement that would have destroyed the Tennessee fiber-optics class action litigation, with the Tennessee landowners receiving essentially nothing.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of the trial court’s dismissal of this federal disability case. The Sixth Circuit held that the employer’s decision to terminate the disability benefits was arbitrary and capricious, and remanded for entry of judgment in favor of the Plaintiff.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of a decision by the United States District Court in Knoxville in which the Court dismissed a case brought by a citizen of Harriman after five Harriman police officers dragged him out of his car (parked in his own driveway) and assaulted him with Mace. The case was notable for its 25-page dissenting opinion, which listed some 161 cases that were overruled by the decision.
In this trilogy of decisions by the Tennessee Supreme Court, Mr. Vowell established the landowners’ right to just compensation when Sprint unlawfully took their land for its fiber-optics cable and then established their right to proceed as a class action.
Mr. Vowell won reversal of a $1,250,000 punitive damages award against a trucking company.
Decisions on Appeal
- Williams v. SWS d/b/a SecureWatch, No E2018-00922-SC-R3-WC (Tenn. Supreme Court Special Workers’ Compensation Panel Sept. 22, 2019)
- Copeland v. HealthSouth/Methodist Rehabilitation Hospital, LP, 565 S.W.3d (Tenn. 2018)
- Sherwood v. Tennessee Valley Authority, 842 F.3d 400 (6th Cir. 2016)
- Currence v. Harrogate Energy, LLC, 2015 WL 2257229 (Tenn. App. 2015)
- Sherwood v. Tennessee Valley Authority, 590 Fed. Appx. 451, 2014 WL 5368863 (6th Cir. 2014)
- In re Estate of Schorn, 359 S.W.3d 192 (Tenn. App. 2011)
- Christenberry Trucking & Farm, Inc. v. F & M Mktg. Servs., Inc., 329 S.W.3d 452 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2010)
- Harmon v. Meek, 2008 WL 918513 (Tenn. App. 2008)
- Ross v. Broadway Towers, Inc., 228 S.W.3d 113 (Tenn. App. 2006)
- Chapman v. Bearfield, 2005 WL 1981796 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 16, 2005) aff’d and remanded, 207 S.W.3d 736 (Tenn. 2006)
- Smith v. Sprint Communications Co., L.P., 387 F.3d 612 (7th Cir. 2004)
- Keith v. Howerton and Easy Money, Inc., 165 S.W.3d 248 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2004)
- Keylon v. Hill, 2003 WL 22927143 (Tenn. App. 2003)
- Keith v. Howerton and Easy Money Inc., 2002 WL 31840683 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2002)
- Spangler v. Lockheed Martin Energy Systems, Inc., 313 F.3d 356 (6th Cir. 2002)
- Frye v. Frye, 80 S.W.3d 15 (Tenn. App. 2002)
- Keith v. Howerton and Easy Money, Inc., 2001 WL 984913 (Tenn. Ct. App. Aug. 28, 2001)
- Gabel v. Gabel, 2001 WL 1089521 (Tenn. App. 2001)
- Moore v. City of Harriman, 272 F.3d 769, 51 Fed.R.Serv.3d 641 (6th Cir. 2001) (en banc)
- Moore v. City of Harriman, 218 F.3d 551 (6th Cir. 2000)
- National Gas Distributors v. Sevier County Utility District, 7 S.W.3d 41 (Tenn. App. 1999)
- Keister v. Lewis, 1999 WL 76063 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 28, 1999)
- Meighan v. Sprint, 942 S.W.2d 476 (Tenn. 1997)
- Pratt v. Smart Corp., 968 S.W.2d 868 (Tenn. App. 1997)
- Meighan v. Sprint, 924 S.W.2d 632 (Tenn. 1996)
- Buhl v. Sprint, 840 S.W.2d 904 (Tenn. 1992)
- National Gas Distributors v. State of Tennessee, 804 S.W.2d 66 (Tenn. 1991)
- Clinton Seafood, Inc. v. Harrington, No. 1408, 1991 WL 50218 (Tenn. App. 1991)
- Satterfield v. Satterfield, No. C.A. 1760, 1990 WL 130823 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1990)
- Lloyd v. Hensley, No. C.A. 1156, 1988 WL 98740 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988)
- Daniel v. Hopson, No. CA 730, 1988 WL 1734 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1988)
- Janzen v. Knox County Bd. of Educ., 790 F.2d 484 (6th Cir. 1986)
- Ratcliffe v. Ratcliffe, 709 S.W.2d 609 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1986)
- Cox v. Cox, No. C/A 1061, 1986 WL 7434, (Tenn. App. 1986)
- Womack v. Gettelfinger, 808 F.2d 446 (6th Cir. 1986)
- Soldano v. Owens-Corning Fiberglass Corp., 696 S.W.2d 887 (Tenn. 1985)
- Knoxville Rod and Bearing v. Bettis Corporation, 672 S.W.2d 203 (Tenn. App. 1983)
- Kelly v. Adroit, Inc., 480 F. Supp. 392 (E.D. Tenn. 1979), aff’d, 657 F.2d 267 (6th Cir. 1981)