Protecting Free Speech for Tennesseans
SB3589 by *Ketron, *Gresham, *Bunch, *Southerland, *Beavers, *Johnson. (*HB3300 by *McCormick, *Dunn, *Bell, *Shipley, *Lundberg, *Swafford, *Weaver, *McManus, *Coley, *Campfield, *White, *Lynn, *Hensley, *Fincher, *Lollar, *Towns, *Turner M.)
As amended and passed, this bill provides that no foreign defamation judgment will be authenticated, or execution issued upon, if:
(1) It is determined that the judgment was rendered by a judicial system that does not provide impartial tribunals or procedures substantially compatible with the requirements of due process of law applicable to Tennessee courts;
(2) The court or tribunal issuing the foreign defamation judgment did not have personal jurisdiction over the defendant in accordance with the principles applicable under Tennessee law; or
(3) The court or tribunal issuing the foreign defamation judgment did not have subject matter jurisdiction over the action.
STATUS: On March25th, as amended, HB 3300 passed the State House 97-0. On April 22, SB3589 passed the State Senate 26-3-2. The Governor signed the legislation on May 10, and it became Public Chapter 900.
To Senator Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro),
Rep. Gerald McCormick (R-Chattanooga),
and Joanne Bregman we
express our deep appreciation
for all they did to assure the
success of this important legislation.
Many thanks to everyone who participated in this great victory!!!
The Tennessee Libel Tourism Act - (a free speech defense act)
- the foreign jurisdiction’s legal system is not compatible with the US system, or,
- the foreign court does not have personal or subject matter jurisdiction, or,
- the defamation law of the foreign jurisdiction does not provide the same (or greater) freedom of speech protections as provided in Tennessee and US law
- Similar laws have already been passed in NY, IL, FL, NJ, UT and CA
Ehrenfeld initiated an action in a US court to hold the UK judgment unenforceable under the US and New York Constitutions. In the absence of the eventual legislation known as “Rachel’s Law”, the New York court had no jurisdictional basis to rule on the claim.