Tennessee Court of Appeals

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Tennessee Court of Appeals
Court information
Judges:   12
Judicial selection
Method:   Commission selection, political appointment
Term:   8 years
Active judges

Alan Highers  •  Patricia Cottrell  •  Charles Susano  •  Richard Dinkins  •  D. Michael Swiney  •  Andy Bennett  •  Holly Kirby  •  David Farmer  •  Frank Clement  •  Thomas R. Frierson  •  J. Steven Stafford  •  John McClarty  •  W. Neal McBrayer  •  Brandon O. Gibson  •  

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The Tennessee Court of Appeals is an intermediate appellate court in Tennessee. It hears appeals of civil cases; the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals hears appeals of criminal cases.

Created by the General Assembly in 1925, the Court of Appeals hears appeals in civil—or non-criminal—cases from trial courts and certain state boards and commissions. The court has twelve members who sit in panels of three in Jackson, Knoxville and Nashville. All decisions made by the Court of Appeals may be appealed, by permission, to the Tennessee Supreme Court. As in all three appellate courts, Court of Appeals hearings do not include witnesses, juries or testimonies. Instead, attorneys present oral and written arguments.[1]

Current judges

David FarmerPatricia CottrellHerschel FranksAlan HighersCharles SusanoHolly KirbyRichard DinkinsAndy BennettJohn McClartyFrank ClementD. Michael SwineyJ. Steven StaffordTN COA judges.jpg
Tennessee Court of Appeals judges, seated (from left to right): David Farmer, Patricia Cottrell, Herschel Franks, Alan Highers, Charles Susano; standing (from left to right): Holly Kirby, Richard Dinkins, Andy Bennett, John McClarty, Frank Clement, D. Michael Swiney, and J. Steven Stafford.

There are 12 members of the Court of Appeals. They are elected on a “yes-no” ballot every eight years. When a vacancy occurs on the intermediate appellate court, the 17-member Judicial selection Commission interviews applicants and recommends three candidates to the governor, who appoints a new judge to serve until the next August general election.

As with the justices of the Tennessee Supreme Court and the judges of the Court of Criminal Appeals, judges of the Tennessee Court of Appeals must, by state law, be evaluated every eight years. The evaluations are then published in newspapers across the state to help voters decide whether the judges should be retained.

JudgeTermAppointed byParty
Judge Alan Highers1982-2014Gov. Lamar Alexander
Judge Patricia Cottrell1998-2014
Judge Charles Susano1994-2014
Judge Richard Dinkins2008-2016
Judge D. Michael Swiney1999-2014
Judge Andy Bennett2007-2016
Judge Holly Kirby1995-2014Gov. Don Sundquist
Judge David Farmer1986-2014
Judge Frank Clement2003-2014Gov. Phil Bredesen
Judge Thomas R. Frierson2013-PresentGov. Bill Haslam
Judge J. Steven Stafford2008-Present
Judge John McClarty1995-2014Gov. Phil Bredesen
Nominee W. Neal McBrayer2014-PresentGov. Bill Haslam
Nominee Brandon O. Gibson2014-PresentGov. Bill Haslam

Former judges

External links


TennesseeUnited States District Court for the Eastern District of TennesseeUnited States District Court for the Middle District of TennesseeUnited States District Court for the Western District of TennesseeUnited States bankruptcy court, Eastern District of TennesseeUnited States bankruptcy court, Middle District of TennesseeUnited States bankruptcy court, Western District of TennesseeUnited States Court of Appeals for the Sixth CircuitTennessee Supreme CourtTennessee Court of AppealsTennessee Court of Criminal AppealsTennessee Circuit CourtTennessee Chancery CourtsTennessee Criminal CourtTennessee Probate CourtTennessee General Sessions CourtTennessee Juvenile CourtTennessee Municipal CourtTennessee countiesTennessee judicial newsTennessee judicial electionsJudicial selection in TennesseeTennesseeTemplate.jpg