Supreme Court Rules Time-Share Salesperson Excluded From Unemployment Benefits

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Tennessee Supreme Court ruled on Monday that a Gatlinburg-area time-share salesperson is not entitled to unemployment benefits.

The salesperson had worked for several years selling time shares at Westgate Smoky Mountains under an independent contractor agreement. In 2009, Westgate terminated that business relationship and the salesperson filed a claim for unemployment compensation.

The Department of Labor considered whether the salesperson was subject to a law that excludes qualified real estate agents from receiving unemployment benefits. The Department concluded that time-share salespeople do not fall under the real estate agent exclusion and granted the benefits.

Westgate sought review from the Appeals Tribunal, which agreed the benefits should be paid, although for somewhat different reasons. Westgate advanced the matter to the Board of Review, which upheld the award of benefits.

Westgate then took the matter to the Chancery Court, which concluded that a time-share salesperson does fall under the real estate agent exclusion and therefore would not qualify for unemployment compensation. The salesperson took the case to the Court of Appeals, which reversed the trial court’s decision and granted the unemployment pay.

Today, the Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals and ruled that a time-share salesperson is a licensed real estate agent.  The Court also ruled that the salesperson met the exclusion for qualified real estate agents and was not entitled to unemployment benefits.

To read the unanimous Opinion in Westgate Smoky Mountains at Gatlinburg v. Burns Phillips, Commissioner, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, authored by Justice Janice M. Holder, visit the Opinions section of TNCourts.gov


Alexander Says Democrat Delays Could Cause Trump To Bypass Senate On 350 Key Nominees

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander on Wednesday warned that if Senate Democrats continue delaying the confirmations of presidential nominees, they would give President Trump “an excuse to staff the government with about 350 key appointees who are unconfirmed and unaccountable to the United States Senate.”  “An administration mostly managed by acting presidential appointees who ... (click for more)

Tennessee Joins $18.5 Million Settlement With Target Over 2013 Data Breach

Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced Wednesday Tennessee has joined 46 other states and the District of Columbia in an $18.5 million settlement with Target Corporation to resolve the states' investigation into the retail company's 2013 data breach. The settlement represents the largest ever multistate data breach settlement.  The states' investigation, led by ... (click for more)

Man Found With Home-Made Explosive Device Near Businesses In Hixson

A man was found with a home-made explosive device outside businesses in Hixson late Tuesday night.   A business was evacuated and portions of Highway 153 and Hamill Road were cordoned off while the device was taken away.   Joshua Redden, 34, was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon, public intoxication, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession ... (click for more)

Weather Service Issues Tornado Watch For Chattanooga Area

The National Weather Service issued a tornado watch for Hamilton County on Wednesday. Here is the advisory: TORNADO WATCH FROM  1:15PM EDT  WED UNTIL  8PM EDT  WED TN . TENNESSEE COUNTIES INCLUDED ARE ANDERSON BLEDSOE BLOUNT BRADLEY CAMPBELL CLAIBORNE CLAY COCKE CUMBERLAND FENTRESS GRAINGER GREENE HAMBLEN HAMILTON HANCOCK HAWKINS JACKSON JEFFERSON ... (click for more)

Life For Our Ancestors In 1890

May 26-27 is the 1890’s Day Jamboree in Ringgold. I encourage any reader to attend and enjoy that wonderful community. I love having grown up in Northwest Georgia and celebrating our veterans, including both of my grandfathers who served in WWII.  But I also want to describe how the 1890’s were for my ancestors, living here in a singularly turbulent time. Based on, among ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Life With 007

I was 13 when the first of 24 James Bond movies came out and, at a time when my sap was just beginning to rise, I will never forget Ursula Andress stepping out of the sea wearing that white bikini. Our hero walks over to the dripping Honey Ryder – that was her name in “Dr. No” – and she says in the Swiss accent, “Are you looking for shells too?” And the first classic reply of thousands ... (click for more)