Tennessee Attorney General

Tennessee State Capitol
Tennessee State Capitol
  • AG Slatery Joins 17 State Coalition Supporting EPA Plan to Ease Burdon on Farmers, Landowners
    Nashville- Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III joined a 17-state coalition this week to support farmers and landowners by urging the Trump administration to adopt its proposed replacement of the Obama-era, Waters of the United States rule. The coalition, in comments filed late Monday, argued the Trump administration’s proposal would restore reasonable, predictable lines between waters subject to federal and state regulation. “The proposed rule, unlike the rule that it would replace, respects the traditional role of Tennessee and all other states to regulate their own water resources,” said Herbert H. Slatery III.The coalition believes the new rule will correct flaws within the 2015 regulation, which extended authority of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers far beyond what Congress intended and the Constitution permits. The Trump Administration proposal also shows respect for the primary responsibility and right of states to regulate their own water resources. The 2015 WOTUS rule, if implemented, would have taken jurisdiction over natural resources from states and asserted federal authority over almost any body of water, including roadside ditches, short-lived streams and many other areas where water may flow once every 100 years. Tennessee signed the West Virginia-led letter with attorneys general from Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Utah. Read the public comments filing here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-12-letter.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-04-15
    3 days ago
  • AG Slatery Sues Franklin Health Care Clinic for 18 Million in TennCare Fraud Case
    Nashville- The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee has made public a suit filed by Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III against ProHealth Rural Health Services, Inc., and its President and Chief Executive Officer, Ray White. By filing the suit, the State intervened in a case initially filed by a whistle blower. As a designated Federally Qualified Community Health Center (FQHC) Look-Alike, ProHealth provides healthcare to all patients, regardless of their ability to pay. That status entitled ProHealth to receive Prospective Payment Service (PPS) payments, a guaranteed minimum amount of money per Medicaid patient visit. As detailed in the complaint, the State alleges White knowingly submitted invoices to the State of Tennessee which falsely inflated the number of Medicaid patient visits to ProHealth from 2012-2017. That caused TennCare to pay ProHealth more than $6,000,000 to which it was not entitled. “ProHealth abused its status as a FQHC to make millions of dollars for services it did not provide to patients who never even walked in the door,” said Herbert H. Slatery III. “That’s why the state is seeking the maximum penalty allowed by law. We want to send a very clear message-TennCare fraud will not be tolerated.” The State is seeking $18,722.234 in damages under the Tennessee Medicaid False Claims Act, three times the fraudulent amount received by ProHealth, and $440,000 in fines. To read the complaint, click here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-11-complaint.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-04-09
    1 week ago
  • AG Slatery Responds to Oklahoma Settlement with Purdue Pharma
    Tuesday, March 26, 2019 | 04:01pm Nashville- The settlement announcement today between the state of Oklahoma and Purdue Pharma is a favorable development. After years of denial, Purdue finally recognized its role in creating the opioid crisis. The opioid epidemic is nationwide and deserves far reaching relief. That is why Tennessee, as a leader of a bipartisan coalition of more than 40 states, is actively pursuing a comprehensive resolution involving opioid manufacturers and distributors that would resolve claims by the states and their subdivisions. Critical discussions have been underway in the last few months. At the same time, a recent Knox County circuit court ruling against Purdue will advance the litigation against the company for violating the state’s Consumer Protection Act. The owners of Purdue, the Sackler family, are also under investigation by this office as well as other opioid manufacturers and distributors. Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-03-25
    3 weeks ago
  • AG Slatery Announces Settlement with Auto Parts Maker
    Robert Bosch LLC accused of harming consumers and undermining regulations by developing and selling unlawful “defeat devices” Nashville-Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced that Bosch will pay the State of Tennessee $2,291,760 in consumer and environmental civil penalties. The agreement also includes precedent-setting injunctive terms and requires Bosch to maintain robust processes to monitor compliance and to refuse to accommodate requests for software development and programming that could result in the installation of defeat device software. “This settlement with Bosch recognizes the important role that suppliers play in ensuring regulatory and legal compliance in the automotive industry and establishes the important precedent that those who knowingly go along with their clients’ wrongful conduct will be held accountable,” said Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III. When Volkswagen, a Bosch customer, was revealed to have systematically utilized defeat device software in its diesel vehicles, several states Attorneys General, including the Attorney General of Tennessee, commenced a separate investigation into the role played by Bosch. As a result of this investigation, the Attorneys General concluded that Bosch facilitated the implementation of the defeat device software in more than 600,000 Volkswagen and Fiat Chrysler vehicles over a period that spanned more than a decade and continued to assist these customers as they implemented the defeat devices and concealed their misconduct from regulators and the public. Under the multistate agreement involving Tennessee and 49 other jurisdictions – including Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Guam and all states other than California, Texas and ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-03-14
    1 month ago
  • Attorney General Slatery Reaches Settlement with Pediatrician Accused of TennCare Fraud
    Wednesday, March 06, 2019 | 10:30am Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III has reached an agreement with Dr. Ricardo Causo which requires the Chattanooga pediatrician to pay the State of Tennessee $125,897.65. "TennCare funds are not unlimited," said Herbert H. Slatery III. "And this office will continue to fight for money wasted on fraudulent claims- money that should be going to treat a vulnerable population." Under the Tennessee Medicaid False Claims Act, the state alleges that from July 1, 2012 through August 31, 2017, Dr. Causo improperly submitted claims to the TennCare program for prolonged services that he did not render. The result was that Dr. Causo received payments for prolonged services for which he did not perform. Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-03-05
    1 month ago
  • AG Slatery Urges Congress to Take Action against Robocalls
    Nashville- Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III today urged the U.S. Senate to enact the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, legislation to curb illegal robocalls and spoofing. A coalition of 54 attorneys general, led by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein, Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson, New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald, and Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood, sent a letter to the U. S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation supporting the TRACED Act. The legislation is sponsored by Sens. John Thune and Ed Markey. In their letter, the attorneys general state that the TRACED Act enables states, federal regulators, and telecom providers to take steps to combat these illegal calls. The legislation will require voice service providers to participate in a call authentication framework to help block unwanted calls and creates an interagency working group to take additional actions to reduce robocalls and hold telemarketers and robocallers accountable. More than 48 billion robocalls were made in 2018, making them the number one source of consumer complaints to the FTC and the FCC and resulting in millions in consumer losses. The state attorneys general work to enforce do-not-call laws and protect consumers in their states from being harassed and scammed by robocalls. Click here for a copy of the letter:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-07-letter.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-03-04
    1 month ago
  • AG Slatery Announces Tennesseans Can Access Wells Fargo Redress Program
    Monday, March 04, 2019 | 10:45am Allows certain consumers to have inquiry reviewed Nashville – Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III said Tennesseans who have not yet been made whole through other Wells Fargo settlement remediation programs can now register a complaint with Wells Fargo for possible relief. Wells Fargo’s redress review program (https://www.wellsfargo.com/commitment/redress/) was a key component of the December 2018 settlement with the attorneys general of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The settlement resolves claims the bank violated state consumer protection laws by opening millions of unauthorized accounts and enrolling customers into online banking services without their knowledge or consent, improperly referring customers for enrollment in third-party renters and life insurance policies, improperly charging auto loan customers for force-placed and unnecessary collateral protection insurance, failing to ensure customers received refunds of unearned premiums on certain optional auto finance products, and incorrectly charging customers for mortgage rate lock extension fees. As part of the program, Wells Fargo will maintain a website with information regarding eligibility for redress, and will provide periodic reports to the states about ongoing remediation efforts.Tennesseans with questions or concerns may call the following Wells Fargo phone numbers: Unauthorized Accounts/Improper Retail Sales Practices: 1-844-931-2273 Improper Renters and Life Insurance Referrals: 1-855-853-9638 Force-Placed Collateral Protection Auto Insurance: 1-888-228-9735 Guaranteed Asset/Auto Protection (GAP) Refunds: 1-844-860-6962 Mortgage Interest Rate Lock Extension Fees: 1-866-385-5008 Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-03-03
    2 months ago
  • AG Slatery Applauds Decision in Purdue Litigation
    Wednesday, February 27, 2019 | 01:41pm Knox County Circuit Court Judge Kristi M. Davis recently denied Purdue Pharma’s motion to dismiss and found that the State has set forth a cause of action for violation of the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act, violation of the 2007 Agreed Final Judgment, and creation of a public nuisance. Attorney General Slatery said, "Needless to say, we are pleased with the ruling. Our Office filed the Complaint after an extensive investigation into Purdue’s highly aggressive marketing practices and other unlawful conduct. We continue to believe their conduct has been unconscionable and that they helped cause one of the most devastating public health crises in Tennessee’s history. We intend to hold Purdue accountable as we move forward with the litigation." To read the ruling, click here:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-05-order.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-02-26
    2 months ago
  • AG Slatery applauds decision releasing TennCare from 2014 injunction
    Thursday, January 24, 2019 | 03:28pm Nashville- “We are pleased with the Court’s decision and with its conclusion that there is no evidence of on-going systemic problems in TennCare’s process of making timely determinations of the eligibility of applicants for Medicaid coverage,” said Herbert H. Slatery III. The Wilson v. Long decision, issued by Federal District Court Judge William Campbell Jr., stems from a 2014 lawsuit alleging that thousands of people claimed their applications for Medicaid coverage were not resolved because of a flawed processing system. Years of litigation ensued to determine what went wrong and identify solutions. The Court recognized TennCare’s efforts in facilitating reviews of these applications to the federally facilitated marketplace (not state). “As the court found, currently over 99% of TennCare applications are processed within the timeframes required by federal regulations, said General Slatery. “The State appreciates that the Court recognized the complexity of the TennCare program, TennCare’s past and ongoing practice of identifying and addressing problems when they arise, and the constitutional limitations that require judicial restraint when courts are faced with legal challenges to the State’s implementation of complex federal regulatory requirements.” To read the ruling, click here:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-04-wilson.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-01-23
    3 months ago
  • Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and 45 Attorneys General reach $120 million settlement concerning hip implant devices
    Nashville- Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and 45 Attorneys General reached a $120 million Consent Judgment with Johnson & Johnson and DePuy to resolve allegations DePuy unlawfully promoted its metal-on-metal hip implant devices, the ASR XL and the Pinnacle Ultamet. Under the settlement Tennessee shall receive $2,354,489.83. The Attorneys General allege DePuy engaged in unfair and deceptive practices in its promotion of the ASR XL and Pinnacle Ultamet hip implant devices by making misleading claims as to the longevity, also known as survivorship, of metal-on-metal hip implants. DePuy advertised that the ASR XL hip implant had a survivorship of 99.2% at three years when the National Joint Registry of England and Wales reported a 7% revision rate at three years. Similarly, DePuy promoted the Pinnacle Ultamet as having a survivorship of 99.8% and 99.9% survivorship at five years when the National Joint Registry of England and Wales reported a 2.2% 3-year-revision rate in 2009 increasing to a 4.28% 5-year-revision rate in 2012. Some patients who required hip implant revision surgery to replace a failed ASR XL or Pinnacle Ultamet implant experienced persistent groin pain, allergic reactions, tissue necrosis, as well as a build-up of metal ions in the blood. The ASR XL was recalled from the market in 2010. DePuy discontinued its sale of the Pinnacle Ultamet in 2013. To read the terms of the settlement, click here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2019/pr19-03-settlement.pdf Attorneys General of Texas and South Carolina led the investigation. The Executive Committee consisted of the Attorneys General of Florida, ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-01-23
    3 months ago
  • AG Slatery joins $1.5M settlement with Neiman Marcus over 2013 data breach
    The Neiman Marcus Group LLC has agreed to pay $1.5 million and implement policies to resolve an investigation with 43 states and the District of Columbia into the 2013 breach of customer payment card data at 77 Neiman Marcus stores in the United States. In January 2014, Neiman Marcus disclosed that payment card data collected at its retail stores had been compromised by an unknown third party. The states' investigation determined that approximately 370,000 payment cards – of which 1,896 were associated with Tennessee consumers – were compromised in the breach, which took place over the course of several months in 2013. At least 9,200 of the payment cards compromised in the breach were used fraudulently. “Tennesseans have a right to know their payment information is secure,” said Herbert H. Slatery III. “This office will continue to fight for better protections across the board and hold companies accountable when they fail to adequately protect customers’ sensitive information.” Tennessee’s share of the settlement funds is $28,659.04. Neiman Marcus has also agreed to injunctive provisions aimed at preventing similar breaches in the future, including: Complying with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) requirements; Maintaining an appropriate system to collect and monitor its network activity, and ensuring logs are regularly reviewed and monitored; Maintaining working agreements with two, separate, qualified Payment Card Industry forensic investigators; Updating all software associated with maintaining and safeguarding personal information, and creating written plans for replacement or maintenance of software that is reaching its end-of-life or ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-01-08
    3 months ago
  • For-profit education company to forego collecting loans, change practices in agreement with Tennessee, 48 AGs
    Settlement will bring $493.7 million in debt relief for CEC students For-profit education company Career Education Corp. (CEC) has agreed to reform its recruiting and enrollment practices and forego collecting more than $493.7 million in debts owed by 179,529 students nationally, in a settlement with Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and 48 other attorneys general. The Assurance of Voluntary Compliance filed Thursday caps a five-year investigation. “This settlement holds CEC accountable for what we allege were unfair and deceptive recruitment and enrollment practices,” said Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III. “We are pleased Tennessee students will receive debt relief and that the settlement will require CEC to change its business practices for future students.” CEC agrees to forego any and all efforts to collect amounts owed by former students living in the states participating in the agreement. In Tennessee, 2,866 students will get relief totaling approximately $5,512,189. Nationally, the average individual debt relief will be about $2,750. CEC has also agreed to pay $5 million to the states. Tennessee’s share will be $75,000. CEC is based in Schaumburg, Ill., and offers primarily online courses through American InterContinental University and Colorado Technical University. CEC has closed or phased out many of its schools over the past 10 years. Its brands have included Briarcliffe College, Brooks Institute, Brown College, Harrington College of Design, International Academy of Design & Technology, Le Cordon Bleu, Missouri College, and Sanford-Brown. A group of attorneys general launched an investigation into CEC in January 2014 after ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2019-01-02
    4 months ago
  • Tennessee AG Joins Bipartisan Group Supporting First Step Act
    Thursday, December 20, 2018 | 02:29pm Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III has joined a bipartisan group of 38 state attorneys general in support of the FIRST STEP Act. “This criminal justice reform bill would make important adjustments in the federal justice system from the sentencing phase to rehabilitation,” said General Slatery. “It is aptly named legislation, for this is a good first step in equipping those involved in the correctional system to enable better outcomes.” https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-37-letter.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-19
    4 months ago
  • General Slatery Announces $6 Million Settlement with Encore Capital, Midland Credit Management, and Midland Funding to Reform Debt Buying and Collection Practices
    Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced today that Tennessee joined 42 states and the District of Columbia in reaching a $6 million settlement with Encore Capital Group Inc. and its subsidiaries Midland Credit Management, Inc. and Midland Funding, LLC, one of the nation’s largest debt buyers. Debt buying involves buying and selling overdue debts from creditors and other account owners. Often purchased for pennies on the dollar, debt buyers seek to recover the full balance from consumers through collection attempts by phone and mail. Debt buyers, including Midland, also take consumers to court. However, they are often unable to afford attorneys to defend the allegations and cases result in default judgments, hurting credit and putting their wages in jeopardy of being garnished. The settlement resolves the States’ investigation into Midland’s collection and litigation practices. Much like the conduct witnessed during the mortgage crisis, the agreement settles claims that Midland signed and filed affidavits in state courts in large volumes without verifying the information printed in them, a practice commonly called robo-signing. “This office will continue to protect Tennesseans from unfair litigation and monetary collection,” said Herbert H. Slatery III. “This settlement will bring relief to thousands of consumers and should serve as a warning to companies that might act in a similar manner.” The settlement requires Midland to carefully verify the information in affidavits and present accurate documents in court proceedings. When Midland files a lawsuit, it must have account documents about the debt before they file the case, ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-17
    4 months ago
  • Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III responds to ACA ruling
    Monday, December 17, 2018 | 05:25pm "The ACA has been ruled constitutionally flawed in a federal district court decision which will be appealed to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. It is important to point out the court did not issue an injunction. Therefore, nothing will change until the appeals are final. The Court also said the individual mandate was essential to the ACA and the ACA cannot stand without it. At the heart of this case is the Commerce Clause of our Constitution that, according to the court, prevents Congress from compelling Tennesseans to buy insurance, especially if they can’t afford it or don’t want it. Ultimately, it is up to Congress to provide lawful solutions to healthcare coverage, not just debate or campaign on it." Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-16
    4 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery announces Jonathan Skrmetti as Chief Deputy
    Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III today announced Jonathan T. Skrmetti will join the Attorney General’s office as the Chief Deputy in January. In his role as Chief Deputy Attorney General, Skrmetti will coordinate and oversee the substantive legal work of all five sections of the office. “Jonathan Skrmetti’s extensive experience in both complex civil disputes and high-profile criminal matters during his public service makes him a great fit for our leadership team,” said Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery. “In addition, his expertise as a federal prosecutor and subject matter expert in Cyberlaw and data security will be especially valuable to this office and the people of Tennessee.” Skrmetti joins the office from Memphis where he has been a partner with Butler Snow LLP, an adjunct professor at the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, and an Assistant United States Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee. In that role he investigated and prosecuted civil rights crimes and white-collar offenses. Prior to his time in Memphis, Skrmetti served as a trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice and a Special Assistant in the United States Attorney’s Office in DC. He also clerked for the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals assisting the Hon. Steven M. Colloton. Skrmetti graduated from Harvard Law School where he was the Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy. He also earned degrees from George Washington University and the University of Oxford. He is happily married to Alisha, and the ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-11
    4 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery announces the swearing in of 14 assistant attorneys general
    Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III is pleased to announce the swearing in of 14 assistant attorneys general today in the Old Supreme Court Chamber in the Tennessee State Capitol. Chief Justice Jeff Bivins of the Tennessee Supreme Court administered the oath. The annual ceremony recognizes attorneys hired by the Attorney General’s office in the last 12 months. Pictured in the attached photo are: Back row (L-R) Matthew Jones, Garrett Ward, Rainey Lankford, Patrick Riley, Kyle Mallinak, David Wood. Front row (L-R) Chief Justice Jeff Bivins, Jeffrey Ridner, David Rudolph, Amber Seymour, Gabrielle Mees, Dianna Shew, Matthew Gaske, Matthew Cloutier, Attorney General Slatery. Brian Mauk is not pictured. Related Link ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-10
    4 months ago
  • AG Slatery joins bipartisan group asking Social Security Administration to implement new database to prevent identity theft
    Monday, December 10, 2018 | 02:53pm Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III today joined a bipartisan group of 43 states and the District of Columbia urging the Social Security Administration (SSA) to promptly comply with a new provision of federal law that aims to address "synthetic identity fraud." The provision, Section 215 of S.2155, directs the SSA to develop a database to more quickly facilitate the verification of a consumer’s information when requested by certified financial institutions. A nimble system can respond to warning signs of "synthetic identity fraud" where thieves use real Social Security Numbers with fictitious names and birthdates. The current system does not allow financial institutions to check identity on a real-time basis. "We ask you to evaluate and make necessary modifications to the Social Security Administration database and systems to comply promptly with this new provision of federal law. As enforcers of the data breach laws in our jurisdictions, we see the impact that exposure of Social Security Numbers can have. Our residents lose thousands of dollars a year and suffer from ruined credit scores, as well as a general sense of anxiety regarding their identity," the attorneys general wrote. A copy of the letter is available here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-32-letter.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-12-09
    4 months ago
  • Statement from the Office of the Attorney General regarding the Marriott data breach
    Friday, November 30, 2018 | 03:51pm We actively enforce state law that protects Tennesseans from data breaches. We are very concerned about the major breach announced by Marriott this morning: the hundreds of millions affected, the nature of the information potentially accessed, and the time that passed since the first breach. We are gathering additional information and looking at what went wrong. Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-11-29
    5 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding the passing of Charles Sargent, former chairman of the House Finance Committee
    Tuesday, November 13, 2018 | 10:48am "Through his dedication and deep grasp of state finances Charles Sargent left the people of Tennessee with a measurable inheritance: the stability and success we enjoy today is a credit to his many years of outstanding service and sound decision making. Personally, I will miss working with Charles. He was a friend as well as a statesman." Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-11-12
    5 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery Urges CFPB to Protect Military Servicemembers from Financial Exploitation
    Attorney General Herbert Slatery III today joined a coalition of 33 attorneys general calling on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Acting Director Mick Mulvaney to continue protecting military servicemembers against predatory lenders under the Military Lending Act (MLA). The attorneys general urge the CFPB to reconsider its reported decision to stop examining lenders to ensure they are complying with the MLA. “Our men and women in uniform deserve an additional layer of protection against lenders who would seek to take advantage of them,” said Attorney General Slatery. “We urge the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to do its part while this office continues its commitment to pursue any person or business who acts deceptively toward our state’s military members and their families.” The MLA, enacted in 2006, protects military servicemembers and their families against exploitative lenders and loans so that servicemembers aren’t overburdened with debt. The CFPB has the authority to examine lenders’ compliance with the MLA to detect potential risks to consumers and ensure that military servicemembers aren’t being offered illegal loans. This is especially important for younger servicemembers who have less experience managing their own finances and may be more vulnerable to predatory loans. Approximately 60 percent of military families report experiencing stress related to their financial condition. Servicemembers in financial distress may have their security clearance revoked and be compelled to leave the military, resulting in the loss of well-trained servicemembers and additional financial burdens for the military. Attorney General Slatery is joined in sending this ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-10-22
    6 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery calls on the FCC to let phone companies do more to block illegal robocalls
    Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with a bipartisan coalition of 34 attorneys general, is calling on the Federal Communications Commission to create new rules to allow telephone service providers to block more illegal robocalls being made to unsuspecting consumers in Tennessee and across the country. The formal comment to the FCC explains that scammers using illegal robocalls have found ways to evade a call blocking order entered last year by the FCC. Scammers disguise their identities, making it difficult for law enforcement to bring them to justice. They also use a technique that allows calls- no matter where they originate- to appear to be from a phone number with the same local area code as the consumer. The added authority sought by the attorneys general will allow service providers to use new technology to detect and block illegal spoofed calls- even those coming from what are otherwise legitimate phone numbers. Service providers will be ready to launch this new authentication method in 2019. The initiative for which the attorneys general seek FCC approval concerns illegal robocalls- which are made to consumers regardless of whether they sign up for do-not-call lists. To date, the FCC has not issued a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning additional provider-initiated call blocking. The attorneys general anticipate that further requests for comments will take place on this subject. For a copy of the comment click here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-28-comments.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-10-09
    6 months ago
  • AG Slatery responds to SCOTUS decision refusing appeal in George v. Hargett (Amendment 1 case)
    Monday, October 01, 2018 | 02:12pm “Today the United States Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal from a group challenging the way Tennessee has counted votes on constitutional amendments since 1870,” said Herbert H. Slatery III. “This is a confirmation of the State’s position from the outset: a state, and not a federal court, should decide how votes are counted under its own Constitution.  This finally puts to rest any uncertainty surrounding the people’s 2014 approval and ratification of Amendment 1 by 72,000 votes.  The Court’s action denying the appeal allows the unanimous 6th Circuit decision in favor of the State to stand. The votes were correctly and constitutionally counted and the plaintiffs’ claims of unfairness, lack of due process and equal protection were all denied.” Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-30
    7 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery Reaches $148 Million Settlement with Uber over Data Breach
    Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III along with the other 49 states and the District of Columbia, has reached an agreement with California-based ride-sharing company Uber Technologies, Inc. (Uber) to address the company’s one-year delay in reporting a data breach to its affected drivers.  Uber learned in November 2016 that hackers had gained access to personal information Uber maintains about its drivers, including drivers’ license information pertaining to approximately 600,000 drivers nationwide. Uber tracked down the hackers, agreed to pay them $100,000, and obtained assurances that the hackers deleted the information. However, even though some of that information, namely drivers’ license numbers for Uber drivers, triggered Tennessee law requiring them to notify affected residents, Uber failed to report the breach in a timely manner, waiting until November 2017 to report it.  As part of the nationwide settlement, Uber has agreed to pay $148 million to the states. Tennessee will receive nearly $1.7 million which will be directed into the state’s general fund. In addition, Uber has agreed to strengthen its corporate governance and data security practices to help prevent a similar occurrence in the future. The settlement between the state of Tennessee and Uber requires the company to: Comply with Tennessee data breach and consumer protection law regarding protecting Tennessee residents’ personal information and notifying them in the event of a data breach concerning their personal information; Take precautions to protect any user data Uber stores on third-party platforms outside of Uber; Use strong password policies for its employees to ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-25
    7 months ago
  • Statement from AG Herbert H. Slatery III regarding data security meeting with US Attorney General Jeff Sessions
     “I was pleased to be among a bipartisan group of attorneys general finding common ground on the important issue of consumer protection and data security. It is essential for state and federal law enforcement agencies to work together and we had a robust discussion.  I appreciate General Sessions and his staff taking the time to hear our concerns.” Related Link: Press Release #18-25:  Statement from AG Herbert H. Slatery III regarding data security meeting with US Attorney General Jeff Sessions ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-24
    7 months ago
  • Statement from AG Herbert H. Slatery III regarding proposal for Boyd to lead UT
    Wednesday, September 19, 2018 | 02:50pm “Randy Boyd’s key role in the Governor’s signature higher education program, the Tennessee Promise, his familiarity with state government and his campaign experience places him in a unique position to guide the University of Tennessee education system at this pivotal time.” Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-18
    7 months ago
  • AG Slatery Urges Congress to Support Funding Under Violence Against Women Act
    Attorney General Herbert Slatery III today joined 55 other state and territory attorneys general to urge Congress to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The attorneys general sent a letter earlier today to congressional leaders and the chairs of the Senate and House Judiciary Committees, urging lawmakers to vote to reauthorize VAWA before it expires this year. Under VAWA, originally passed in 1994, over $6 billion in grant funding has been awarded to government and nonprofit organizations nationwide. The grants have funded training and assistance to address and reduce domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking. The grants have also funded resources and services to assist survivors, prosecute offenders and facilitate partnerships between prosecutors, judges, advocates, community organizations and health care providers. In their letter, the attorneys general emphasized the importance of VAWA to reducing the rate of sexual violence toward women and addressing the devastating effects of these crimes. They urged Congress to continue funding for programs that have helped millions of domestic violence and sexual assault survivors. Click here to read the letter:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-23-letter.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-16
    7 months ago
  • AG Slatery warns against price gouging during Hurricane Florence
    As Hurricane Florence makes landfall, Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance (TDCI) Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak are encouraging consumers to be alert to potential price gouging that could occur. Tennessee’s unfair or deceptive acts or practices law makes it illegal to "unreasonably [raise] prices or unreasonably [restrict] supplies of essential goods, commodities or services in direct response to . . . a natural disaster", even if the event occurs out-of-state. Penalties for violations of the act are up to $1,000 per violation, and the Attorney General may also seek injunctions, consumer restitution, or other appropriate remedies. "During this time, we encourage Tennesseans as well as those visiting our State to report activities they believe may exploit the vulnerable conditions caused by Hurricane Florence," Attorney General Slatery said. "Tennessee has a reputation for hospitality and volunteerism. Our Office intends to bring to task any person or business who seeks an advantage from the misfortune of others." TDCI Insurance Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak said: "During times of crisis, Tennesseans pull together to help their neighbors. Unfortunately, some people view an emergency as a time to benefit themselves at others’ expense. We urge consumers to be on the lookout for price gouging and report it as soon as possible." High prices are not automatically price gouging and may be reasonable based on the costs to the business. If you suspect that you were a victim of price gouging, look for sudden dramatic increases in prices ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-13
    7 months ago
  • Slatery Announces David Rudolph as Assistant Attorney General for the Memphis Office
    Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced David M. Rudolph as assistant attorney general. In this role, Rudolph will join Jim Newsom who serves as Special Counsel in the Memphis office. “We are fortunate to have someone of David Rudolph’s caliber joining our team. You can’t help but be impressed by his experience and expertise. David also brings with him an extensive knowledge of Memphis from his many years in private practice.” Attorney General Slatery said.  Most recently, Rudolph served as a circuit court judge in the 30th Judicial District in Memphis. His prior experience includes nearly 30 years in private practice. Rudolph was a member of the Memphis law firm Bourland, Heflin, Alvarez, Minor & Matthews, PLC from 2009 until his appointment by Governor Haslam to the circuit court bench in 2017. His areas of practice include labor and employment law and commercial litigation. “I am excited about this new opportunity to join the Memphis office of the Tennessee Attorney General,” says Rudolph. “General Slatery and his staff do excellent work as advocates for the State of Tennessee, and I look forward to being part of the team."  A native of Memphis, Rudolph graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vanderbilt University in 1985. He went on to earn his law degree at Vanderbilt in 1988, also serving as Editor-in-Chief of Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law.  Upon graduation from law school, Rudolph served as a judicial law clerk for Judge Bailey Brown of the United States Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. He ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-09-10
    7 months ago
  • Tennessee AG joins more than a dozen other States urging SCOTUS to review federal decision redefining “sex” to include “transgender status.”
    Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III has joined 15 other States asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a decision of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals interpreting the term “sex” in federal antidiscrimination law to include transgender status. In Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. RG & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc., the Sixth Circuit held that a Michigan funeral home had violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act by firing a transgender employee who refused to adhere to the employer’s dress code.  The Sixth Circuit interpreted Title VII’s prohibition on discrimination “because of sex” to include discrimination based on an employee’s transgender status.  The States’ brief argues that, when Congress enacted Title VII in 1964, it used the word “sex” to mean only biological sex, not gender identity.  “The Sixth Circuit’s decision in Harris essentially rewrote federal law,” said Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III.  “Unless and until Congress affirmatively acts to change Title VII, it is up to the States, not the federal judiciary, to determine which protections, or not, should flow to individuals based on gender identity.” “Because this case may also have implications for Tennessee’s schools, Tennessee has a strong interest in obtaining review by the U.S. Supreme Court.”  Other States joining the brief are Nebraska, Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Kentucky, Maine, and Mississippi. To view the brief click here:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-20-amicus.pdf ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-08-27
    8 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding today’s unanimous TNSCT decision in the Decosimo “DUI” case.
    Thursday, August 23, 2018 | 05:03pm Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III is pleased with the outcome of the decision in State of Tennessee v. Rosemary L. Decosimo. “This ruling reverses the judgment of the Court of Criminal Appeals and upholds the constitutionality of a Tennessee law that imposed fees on individuals convicted of DUI and removes any uncertainty over past DUI convictions. In addition, the court pointed out that any financial incentive created by the law is far too remote to constitute a possible temptation for TBI forensic agents to falsify test results and generate fees.”   To view the opinion click here:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-19-opinion.pdf Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-08-22
    8 months ago
  • Attorney General Slatery announces Samantha Fisher as Communications Director
    Monday, August 13, 2018 | 03:08pm Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III today announced Samantha Fisher as Communications Director.  Previously she was a 5 and 10pm anchor on WKRN. “We have been looking forward to this day.  You can’t help but be impressed with Samantha’s skills and experience.  We are delighted to have her join our team,” said Attorney General Slatery. Prior to her time at WKRN, she worked as a national correspondent for CNN where she covered the 2008 Presidential campaign.  She also worked as an anchor and reporter in Augusta, Georgia, and Salt Lake City, Utah.  “It’s exciting to join a remarkable group of attorneys and staff working diligently on behalf of Tennesseans, said Fisher.” Fisher and her husband Daniel have two daughters.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia.  Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-08-12
    8 months ago
  • Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III released the following statement tonight on the execution by lethal injection of death-row inmate Billy Ray Irick:
    “The death penalty is constitutional and it is the law of the State of Tennessee.  It has taken decades and multiple court hearings, but justice was finally served for the murder and aggravated rape of 7-year-old Paula Dyer.  Justice was delayed too long for this little girl and her family.  I hope tonight’s lawful execution in some way eases the heartache Paula’s family has lived with and brings a degree of closure to a chapter of their lives that has been indescribably difficult.” Facts and Procedural History Billy Ray Irick was convicted by a Knox County jury in 1986 of the first-degree murder and aggravated rape of 7-year-old Paula Dyer while she had been entrusted to his care.  The jury sentenced Irick to death, and the Tennessee Supreme Court affirmed.  He then sought post-conviction relief, which was denied in state court.  Additionally, his application for federal habeas relief was denied by the U.S. District Court, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed.  In 2010, the Tennessee Supreme Court ordered Irick’s sentence be carried out on Dec. 7, 2010.  The Court later vacated its order after Irick intervened in a state-court action filed by another death-row inmate challenging the constitutionality of Tennessee’s lethal injection three-drug protocol.  That challenge failed in the trial court, and the Tennessee Court of Appeals affirmed.  In Sept. 2013, the TN Dept. of Correction replaced the three-drug protocol with a single-drug protocol.  In Oct. 2013, the Tennessee Supreme Court set an execution date of Jan. 15, ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-08-08
    8 months ago
  • Court filing in the matter of James Thomas and David Hixson v. Haslam
    The Attorney General’s statutory duty is to defend the constitutionality of a statute of statewide effect.  Accordingly, this Office recently filed a Notice of Appeal in the U.S. District Court.  Today, this Office filed a Motion for Partial Stay Pending Appeal.  A copy is available here:  https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/attorneygeneral/documents/pr/2018/pr18-16-memorandum.pdf Related Links:  Press Release #18-16:  Court filing in the matter of James Thomas and David Hixson v. Haslam (driver’s license revocation for failure to pay court costs) Commissioner David W. Purkey's Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion for Partial Stay Pending Appeal (July 26, 2018) ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-07-25
    9 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding Purdue Pharma litigation
    Thursday, July 05, 2018 | 10:59am “We are pleased Purdue Pharma decided to withdraw its motion for a protective order, and the State’s complaint is now available to the public on our website or from the Knox County Clerk’s Office. As outlined in our response to the motion, we believe the public has the right to know what is going on in this important lawsuit. We will now concentrate on moving the litigation forward.” General Slatery said. Link to complaint: https://www.tn.gov/attorneygeneral/working-for-tennessee/filings-of-interest/purdue-pharma.html Related Links: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-07-04
    10 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision on online sales tax
    Thursday, June 21, 2018 | 02:04pm “Today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, holding that States may collect sales tax from online retailers, is welcome news.  Tennessee joined a multi-state amicus brief in support of South Dakota that highlighted the importance of this source of revenue for the States and the unfairness of the previous rule to our local retailers.  We will continue to review the decision and its impact on the pending case filed against the TN Department of Revenue by the American Catalog Association,” General Slatery said. Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-06-20
    10 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding the recent resignation of Representative Gerald McCormick
    Tuesday, June 19, 2018 | 01:53pm “Thanks to Gerald McCormick for serving our state for about fourteen years.  He was always Leader McCormick to me and I appreciated his candor and willingness to sponsor, lead, vote for and pass legislation that was the best for Tennessee, whether politically expedient or not.  We will miss that statesmanship and wish him the best in his future endeavors.”  Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-06-18
    10 months ago
  • Statement from Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III regarding the passing of former deputy governor Claude Ramsey
    Monday, June 18, 2018 | 04:47pm “I am deeply saddened by the loss of my friend Claude Ramsey.  I had the privilege of serving with him in the Haslam Administration and he always offered wise and insightful advice.  He was a motivator who brought out the good in everyone.  No one was better with people than Claude.  My sympathies to Jan and the Ramsey family.” Related Link: ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-06-17
    10 months ago
  • Tenn. Attorney General Seeks to Make State’s Complaint against Purdue Pharma Public
    Friday, June 08, 2018 | 02:45pm Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III is seeking to make the State of Tennessee’s Complaint filed against Purdue Pharma on May 15, 2018 in Knox County Circuit Court available to the public. Under a court order, Purdue had ten days from the date the company was served with the lawsuit to ask the Court to keep the Complaint under seal.  Purdue has now asked the Court to redact most of the State’s Complaint.  The State supported the allegations in the Complaint with notes from Purdue’s sales representatives recounting what they told health care providers in sales calls, notes from Purdue sales representatives that speak to the company’s knowledge of red flags for abuse or diversion of OxyContin, data about the company’s opioid sales in Tennessee, and other materials.  Purdue marked much of this evidence as confidential.  The Office of the Attorney General followed the terms of the confidentiality agreement which allows the State to file a complaint containing this information. Now Purdue asserts these references are trade secrets and is seeking to have them restricted from public view.  “Commercial misrepresentations do not constitute a legitimate trade secret,” General Slatery said.  “The allegations in the Complaint are based on Purdue’s responses to civil investigative demands made by our Office; they were not voluntary disclosures.  We will continue to work to make the State’s Complaint available to the public and hold Purdue accountable.”  After a hearing date is set, the State will respond to ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-06-07
    10 months ago
  • Tennessee Attorney General Sues Purdue Pharma
    Investigations of Other Opioid Manufacturers and Distributors Continue: Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with a bipartisan group of Attorneys General, sued Purdue Pharma today for its unlawful marketing and promotion of OxyContin and other drugs and its role in causing and prolonging the opioid epidemic in Tennessee. ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-05-14
    11 months ago
  • Tennessee Attorney General Sues Purdue Pharma
    Investigations of Other Opioid Manufacturers and Distributors Continue: Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with a bipartisan group of Attorneys General, sued Purdue Pharma today for its unlawful marketing and promotion of OxyContin and other drugs and its role in causing and prolonging the opioid epidemic in Tennessee. ... read more
    Source: Tennessee Attorney GeneralPublished on 2018-05-14
    11 months ago