Below are collections of articles and blog posts we have written that provide valuable information on various legal topics such as immigration, marriage, business practices and more. Follow us to receive notifications when new articles or blog posts are released.


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Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016
June 8, 2016

Until now, trade secret law in the United States was left to the individual states. The Uniform Trade Secrets Act, or variations thereof, had been adopted by 47 states and the District of Columbia.

Tonya K. Cammon Elected as Fellow of Tennessee Bar
June 2, 2016

Tonya K. Cammon has recently been elected a Fellow of the Tennessee Bar Foundation, an association of 818 attorneys across the state. Invitations to membership, which is a position of honor, were extended to 30 attorneys this year by the Board of Trustees. The introduction of new Fellows took place in May at the annual Fellows' Dinner in Nashville.

Attorney Mark W. Litchford Successfully Completes NBI Training
April 21, 2016

Attorney Mark Litchford, a director at the law firm Grant, Konvalinka & Harrison, P.C., in Chattanooga, Tennessee, recently completed his training on Advanced Plaintiff Strategies for Automobile Injuries held by the National Business Institute,

Defending Your Rights Starts With Selecting A Competent Attorney
March 28, 2016

When individuals are charged with a driving under the influence, they are facing a dilemma that may substantially affect their life forever. Ranging from incarceration to having a lifetime criminal history, a conviction for DUI can destroy a career, ruin relationships, and eliminate one's chance at obtaining employment. Selecting a DUI attorney is one of the biggest decisions an individual may make and substantial consideration should be employed to determine whether or not the attorney truly has the skills, training, knowledge and resources that are needed to successfully resolve and win DUI cases.

Attorney Mark W. Litchford Receives Distinguished Membership
March 23, 2016

On March 11, Mark Litchford was admitted into the American Association of Premier DUI Attorneys, a nationwide organization of members who are recognized as having achieved advanced level training on the strategies that result in the successful resolution for defendants charged with driving under the influence.

So You're Filing An Immigration Application - What's Next?
March 17, 2015

Let's assume you are ready to file an application or petition with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS). What can you do to ensure that CIS approves your application?

  • Consider contacting a licensed attorney that practices immigration law. Using an attorney gives you security that you have used the correct form, that the application is complete, is in proper order and is being sent to the correct CIS office, and that CIS can contact the attorney if there is a problem. An attorney can also save you lots of time dealing with CIS and the application process.
  • Double check the form instructions to make sure you have included all required documentation and fully completed the application. Check to make sure you have the most recent forms and the correct fee amount.
  • Double check your responses on the form. Make sure you have answered all applicable sections.
  • Make a copy of your complete application.
  • Prepare a cover letter listing your enclosures.
  • Note that CIS likes you to indicate page numbers on your documents for certain forms.
  • Check the form instructions or for the order of the enclosures.
  • Send it via overnight delivery or certified U.S. mail, return receipt requested. That way, you have evidence of delivery.
  • Complete and include form G-1145 if you would like an email indicating USCIS received your package.
David C. Higney
United States Supreme Court Denies Certiorari in Hobart
January 21, 2015

As an update to my July 16, 2014 and January 20, 2015 articles, on January 20, 2015, the United States Supreme Court denied certiorari in Hobart on 1/20 (S.Ct. Case # 14-575; at p.3). Thus, the 6thCircuit Court of Appeals ruling in Hobart relative to CERCLA contribution and cost-recovery governs.

David C. Higney
Sixth Circuit Revives Limitation Defense in CERCLA Contribution Action
January 20, 2015

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday (1/14), in LWD PRP Group v. Alcan Corp., et al., Case No. 14-5730, to resuscitate affirmative defense arguments against claims being made by a conglomeration of 58 settling corporations that had negotiated a Consent Decree with the United States EPA. The panel relied heavily on a decision six months ago in Hobart Corp., et al. v. Waste Management of Ohio, Nos. 3273/3276 (6th Cir.). Holding the settling parties' claims are time barred due to the expiration of the CERCLA statute of limitation for contribution claims, under the circumstances presented, the LWD PRP Group panel held the settlement's effective date is the appropriate triggering event when calculating the applicable statute of limitations. Rejecting the settling parties' arguments that the completion of a removal action should be the limitations period's trigger, the LWD PRP Group panel noted no distinction with Hobart and no power to reverse a precedential opinion of the Court. The opinion reverses the United States District Court (W.D. Ky.) that had denied defendants' motions to dismiss the settling-PRP group's contribution claims against hundreds of other companies, state agencies, municipalities and universities.

David C. Higney
6th Circuit Rules on CERCLA Cost Recovery & Contribution Actions
July 16, 2014

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday (7/14) in Hobart Corp. et al. v. Waste Management of Ohio (Case Nos. 13-3273/3276), in CERCLA, 42 USC §9601 et seq., cases where a potentially responsible party (PRP) has entered into an administrative settlement with the government, thus meeting a statutory trigger for filing a contribution action, the PRP can bring only a contribution action pursuant to CERCLA § 113(f)(3)(B) and cannot bring a CERCLA § 107(a)(4)(B) cost-recovery action. The appellate court's opinion is consistent with a position previously advanced by this law firm and Squire Sanders resulting in our client's Motion to Dismiss being granted on the issue. Tennessee v. Roane Holdings Ltd., 835F.Supp.2d 527, 538-541 (E.D. Tenn. 2011); 75 ERC (BNA) 1109 (CERCLA §113(f) constitutes third-party plaintiff's exclusive remedy such that its action and claims made pursuant to CERCLA §107 cannot be maintained). For more information about this development, or to discuss environmental matters and federal court litigation, please contact David Higney.

Immigration Lesson: What is an Affidavit of Support
April 18, 2014

For typical family-based immigrants attempting to obtain a green card, the petitioning relative must sign a form I-864 Affidavit of Support. By signing this Affidavit, the petitioner is agreeing with the U.S. Government that if the immigrant obtains federal governmental benefits, the government has the right to seek reimbursement from the petitioner. Note that this is only with regard to federal governmental benefits for the immigrant only, and does not include any state benefits. It also does not include any benefits received by the immigrant's family members. This agreement is in effect for the shorter period of (1) the immigrant becomes a U.S. citizen, (2) the immigrant dies, (3) the immigrant works 40 quarters (which would be 10 years straight employment), (4) the immigrant permanently leaves the U.S., or (5) the immigrant receives a green card based on a new Affidavit of Support. Note that divorce does not terminate the petitioner's obligations under the Affidavit of Support.

Grant Konvalinka & Harrison, P.C., serves clients in Tennessee cities such as Chattanooga, Cleveland, East Ridge, Red Bank, Jasper, Collegedale, Athens, Decatur, Altamont, McMinnville, Manchester, Dunlap, Winchester, Fayetteville, Soddy-Daisy, Etowah, Dayton, Charleston, Tullahoma, Fort Oglethorpe, Dalton, Chatsworth, Calhoun, Summerville, Lafayette, Ringgold, Chattanooga Valley, Chickamauga, Tunnel Hill and Trenton.

Counties: Hamilton County, Bradley County, McMinn County, Sequatchie County, Grundy County, Franklin County, Coffee County, Warren County, Dade County, Catoosa County.

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