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Biographical Information

Best Lawyers announced that Randall Kinnard has been named Personal Injury Lawyer of the Year yet again for 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee. Best Lawyers compiles its list of outstanding attorneys by surveying thousands of leading lawyers and asking them to evaluate their professional peers.

In the last several years Mr. Kinnard has been asked by lawyer groups across the country to visit them and give his speech called, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T.” This speech reminds lawyers how important it is to be respectful at all times, even in the courtroom. “The lawyer must respect the jury. Never waste their time and always be honest with them,” he says.

In August 2010, the President of the Inner Circle of Advocates announced the selection of Randall Kinnard as a new member of the Inner Circle of Advocates: “Randy Kinnard, of Nashville, Tennessee has been inducted into the Inner Circle of Advocates, a group of the best 100 trial attorneys in the country, because of his extraordinary career and remarkable successes in the courtroom. He is a person who is universally respected among his peers and one of the great trial lawyers in the United States.”

Lawyers Weekly USA, a prominent national law publication, featured Randy Kinnard as a MASTER OF TRIAL ADVOCACY in the article “THE WARRIOR WITHIN” Click here to read the article.

Before entering law school, he attended West Point and served in Vietnam. His combat experience with the 173rd Airborne Brigade has served him well in the practice of law.” (August 4, 2003, LWUSA 518). A combat Airborne Ranger, he was awarded the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, Purple Heart, Bronze Star for Valor and Air Medal for 28 assaults in combat during his two tours in Vietnam. He also served with the 82nd Airborne Division and 101st Airborne Division.

Mr. Kinnard is certified as a Civil Trial Specialist by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and by the Tennessee Commission on Continuing Legal Education & Specialization. He is also a Certified Medical Malpractice Specialist. He has won many record-setting verdicts for his clients in over 30 years of practice. Randall Kinnard was voted the lawyer they would most want to represent them in a medical malpractice case by Middle Tennessee lawyers, said Business Nashville, which quoted one lawyer as saying, “It’s pretty well recognized that he is the premier plaintiff’s medical malpractice attorney in Nashville.”

But, as he says, “It’s not all about doing the best you can for your client as a lawyer. It’s also about being a counselor and a friend to your client.” When he teaches other lawyers about how to be a good lawyer, he emphasizes two things: (1) competence and (2) respecting your client. This means “being there” for your client, he says.

Areas of Practice:

  • Medical Malpractice
  • Vehicular Accidents
  • Product Liability
  • Wrongful Death
  • Personal Injury

Other professional achievements, memberships, and honors.

  • Chairman of the Ethics Committee, Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Past Chairman and Current Member of Legal–Medical Relations Committee of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Ethics Committee Member of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Ethics Committee Member of the American Association for Justice
  • Advocate Chair of Patient Safety Committee of the Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Member of Fellowship for Accurate Courtroom Testimony
  • Best Lawyers Personal Injury Lawyer of the Year, Nashville, TN 2011, 2013
  • Member: Inner Circle of Advocates
  • Super Lawyers, Mid-South
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Best Lawyers in Tennessee, as listed in Business TN
  • Top 100 Lawyers in Tennessee, Law and Politics Magazine
  • Preeminent Lawyers, Highest AV rating* by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Past President of Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Past Chairman of Lawyers Involved for Tennessee
  • State Delegate to American Association for Justice
  • Fellow of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Fellow of the Nashville Bar Association
  • Law Review, Memphis State University School of Law
  • American Board of Trial Advocates Member
  • Nashville Bar Association Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association Member
  • American Bar Association Member
  • American Association for Justice Member
  • Tennessee Association for Justice Member

Certification/Specialties:

  • Civil Trial Specialist, National Board of Trial Advocacy
  • Continuing Legal Education & Specialization, Tennessee Commission
  • Medical Malpractice Specialist, American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys

Other information. Mr. Kinnard is in the process of founding The Children’s Justice Center, a non-profit, charitable organization which will provide free legal help, advice, and court representation for abused and neglected children.

Mr. Kinnard is an avid outdoorsman, enjoys running, golf, fishing, and hiking. He also likes to read, especially history.

Admission Dates & Jurisdictions

  • Tennessee
  • Kentucky

Education

  • Memphis State University School of Law, Memphis, Tennessee – 1976
    • Law Review: Memphis State University
  • United States Military Academy, West Point
    • Bachelor of Science

Honors & Awards

  • Inner Circle of Advocates – Top 100 Trial Attorneys in the Country
  • The Best Lawyers in America — Medical Malpractice Law-Plaintiffs, 2015
  • The Best Lawyers in America — Personal Injury Litigation-Plaintiffs, 2015
  • The Best Lawyers in America — Product Liability Litigation-Plaintiffs, 2015

Professional Associations

  • Chairman of the Ethics Committee, Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Past Chairman and Current Member of Legal–Medical Relations Committee of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Ethics Committee Member of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Ethics Committee Member of the American Association for Justice
  • Advocate Chair of Patient Safety Committee of the Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Member of Fellowship for Accurate Courtroom Testimony
  • Best Lawyers Personal Injury Lawyer of the Year, Nashville, TN 2011, 2013
  • Member: Inner Circle of Advocates
  • Super Lawyers, Mid-South
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Best Lawyers in Tennessee, as listed in Business TN
  • Top 100 Lawyers in Tennessee, Law and Politics Magazine
  • Preeminent Lawyers, Highest AV rating* by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Past President of Tennessee Association for Justice
  • Past Chairman of Lawyers Involved for Tennessee
  • State Delegate to American Association for Justice
  • Fellow of the Tennessee Bar Association
  • Fellow of the Nashville Bar Association
  • Law Review, Memphis State University School of Law
  • American Board of Trial Advocates Member
  • Nashville Bar Association Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association Member
  • American Bar Association Member
  • American Association for Justice Member
  • Tennessee Association for Justice Member

Press

Mr. Kinnard recently wrote a book called “Respect – Through the Eyes of Children”  To learn more about this book, and the RESPECT project that is spreading throughout the country, please visit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bsfsEVw5FQ

Press Coverage of Record Breaking 22.2 million dollar Chattanooga Jury Verdict

http://www.chattanoogan.com/2010/3/13/170988/Federal-Jury-In-Chattanooga-Awards.aspx

 

 

 

Verdicts & Settlements

Throughout his illustrious career, Randy Kinnard has obtained multiple million and multi-million dollar jury verdicts on behalf of the people he has the honor of representing.  Many of these verdicts have been record-breaking verdicts.  A few examples of these verdicts are set out below:

  1. Bette Donathan was in an automobile accident in Winchester, Tennessee. She had a broken leg. She had surgery that was supposed to repair her broken lower right leg. However, as she was prepared for surgery at Southern Tennessee Medical Center in Winchester, medical personnel inserted an epidural catheter for post-operative pain control. “The epidural catheter should have never been inserted because she was on blood thinner due to her having a mechanical heart valve,”, Randall L. Kinnard, her attorney, said. Bette Donathan developed a spinal bleed that left her paralyzed from the waist down. The jury, in a trial that lasted almost two months, awarded 62 year old Bette Donathan 19.2 million dollars, and 3 million dollars to her husband, Ben Donathan. It was reported that the verdict for Bette Donathan was the largest malpractice judgment for an individual in the history of Tennessee. “This should never have happened,” Mr. Kinnard said. “Bette Donathan went into the hospital with a broken lower leg, and came out a paraplegic.” Randy Kinnard and Daniel Clayton of Kinnard Clayton & Beveridge in Nashville, Tennessee represented Bette and Ben Donathan in this medical malpractice trial.
  2. Randy Kinnard and Mary Ellen Morris of Kinnard, Clayton & Beveridge obtained the largest verdict in Weakley County history for their 23 year-old client.  This trial lasted five weeks, tried before a jury of 5 men and 7 women, in Dresden, TN. The jury returned their verdict of $15.2 million for the plaintiff.When he was 17 years old, Cody Wade was in a car wreck in Weakley County and suffered multiple injuries. He was air flighted to Memphis to The Regional Medical Center, a trauma center. He had a tracheostomy tube placed via neck, into airway after being intubated for four days. He had ten broken ribs, broken bones, broken wrist, had skin grafts, abrasions on back and legs, arms and face.

    After a slow month of recovery at The Med, he was not able to walk or talk, but was able to communicate by typing. The medical providers tried to remove the trach. After 24 hours, he complained he could not breathe right. They reinserted the trach tube.

    He was sent to HealthSouth Cane Creek rehab hospital in his rural, West Tn. home town. His family doctor, Dr. Susan Lowry, became the attending doctor at rehab hospital. Cody was to be rehabbed with eventual removal of trach.

    He made progress. Finally he could walk a football field with assistance. While he still had some moderate cognitive dysfunction, he was able to write messages and to mouth words.

    During third week of rehab, Dr. Lowry decided to remove the trach tube. She removed it at the bedside, in the rehab center. Cody West was very worried, due to what happened with the trach tube in Memphis. Dr. Lowry reassured the family he would be fine.

    18 hours later, he complained, “Feels like something is caught in my throat.” Dr. Lowry and the nursing staff attributed the complaint to mucous. Dr. Lowry went home. The patient was left in the building with nurses only. He kept saying that he could not breathe right. They calmed him down.

    A few hours later his airway collapsed.

    They could not save him at rehab hospital. Nurses could not do an emergency trach. Paramedics arrived. Cody Wade arrested. They did CPR, and he came back, but with huge anoxic brain injury. Cody is now severely disabled, confined to bed for life. He cannot speak or move. The verdict of $15.2 million will take care of Cody the rest of his life.

    Assisting Mr. Kinnard and Ms. Morris in representing Cody Wade was local counsel Roy Herron of Dresden, TN.

  3.  Nashville Jury awarded$6.5 million for woman represented by Randy Kinnard who went into the hospital for a tubal ligation. The doctor put a small hole in her large colon during the procedure and did not recognize it. Five days after the surgery, the woman developed severe peritonitis, was operated upon, and found to be severely infected. Shortly after that surgery, a nasogastric tube was removed too early, causing the patient to vomit alone in her room. She aspirated her own vomit and suffered a brain injury.
  4.  Nashville jury awards $4 million to a 24 year old college student, represented by Randy Kinnard, who had an arterial venous malformation on his spine, which went untreated until it was too late. He became paralyzed from the waist down.
  5.  Nashville jury awards $3 million for wrongful death of 16 year old boy who developed a severe headache, was taken to a local hospital and admitted. The young man complained of horrible headaches, vomited, and lost consciousness. He had diabetic ketoacidosis and went untreated, until it was too late to save his life. Randy Kinnard represented the family of the young man.Chattanooga jury awards $2 million for wrongful death of 47 year old high school principal. This high school principal and football coach had a condition known as diverticulitis. After undergoing two annual, routine colonoscopy procedures for screening purposes, the gastroenterologist failed to warn the patient that his condition could lead to cancer if he did not take appropriate precautionary measures. The patient developed colon cancer and by the time it was discovered, it was too late to save the patient’s life. Randy Kinnard represented the family.
  6. $2 million awarded by Murfreesboro jury for Middle Tennessee State University girl’s basketball coach. The patient developed blood clots in his leg and was admitted to the hospital for “clot busting” therapy. The IV medication caused the patient to start bleeding freely about the spinal column. The patient complained of pain and other problems and the complaints were not called to the treating physician. The patient suffered neurological damage. Although he ultimately was able to walk, his quality of life was permanently impaired. Randy Kinnard represented this man.
  7. $2 million for pain and suffering of brain injured patient at rehabilitation center who had feeding tube accidentally pulled out and improperly replaced, resulting in liquids going into peritoneal cavity instead of stomach organ. Developed peritonitis. Davidson County Circuit Court jury award.
  8. $1.6 million for death of 44 year old single mother, who gave birth to twins and went home from hospital. Two days later, developed pain in legs, called doctor, told to stay at home. Died one day later of blood clot. Davidson County Circuit Court jury award.
  9. $1 million for a patient who lost the ability to speak. The 47 year old female patient went to her family practitioner, complaining of signs and symptoms which were caused by pneumonia. The family practitioner failed to diagnose the problem or treat the condition. Five days later, the patient collapsed and went into a coma. Her lungs essentially filled with fluid. She suffered a loss of oxygen to the brain and a resulting permanent loss of the ability to speak. Davidson County Circuit Court jury award.
  10. $1 million for wrongful death of Vietnam veteran with post traumatic stress disorder. Took overdose of pills. Neighbor called police and said they should take him to hospital. They took him to jail instead where he died on cell floor. Middle District of Tennessee Federal Court jury award.

Speaking Engagements

Frequent speaker. During his career, Mr. Kinnard has given dozens of speeches to lawyers to help them in their practice. He has spoken to judges about challenges in the courtroom. He has given speeches to hospitals, physicians, and nurses about how to avoid committing malpractice and how to improve the quality of care for patients. Here are the titles of some of the speeches he has given to national, state and local trial bar associations and to judges:

  • Medical Malpractice In a Nutshell
  • Medical Malpractice – – Best Tips from 25 Years of Trial Work
  • The Personal Injury Trial: Voir Dire to Closing
  • Trial Advocacy In Tennessee – Initial Considerations; How to Assess Damages
  • Voir Dire in Auto Cases
  • Putting the Case Together for Trial
  • Mistakes Made in the Preparation and Trial of Personal Injury Cases
  • Children and Loss of Consortium; Comparative Fault Challenges
  • Advanced Trial Techniques
  • Opening Statement and Closing Argument – Trial Advocacy in Tennessee
  • Medical Malpractice – Tips for Tennessee Judges
  • How to Evaluate and Settle Personal Injury Claims in Tennessee – Plaintiff’s Perspective
  • Tennessee Evidence
  • Settling the Federal Case – – The Plaintiff’s Perspective
  • Mistakes Made in the Preparation of Trials
  • Assessing and Evaluating the Malpractice Case: Plaintiff’s View
  • Ethics & Professionalism
  • Evaluating Your Client’s Medical Malpractice Case
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Medical Malpractice – Plaintiff Perspective
  • Personal Injury Litigation Practice in Tennessee
  • Notice and Certificate of Good Faith Laws Change Again!
  • The Burden of Proof and Related Evidence Issues
  • What I Would Tell the Doctor if I Were His Lawyer
  • The New Medical Malpractice Statutes
  • Less is More in the Personal Injury Trial
  • Malpractice and Other Tort Issues
  • R-E-S-P-E-C-T

In his most recent speech to lawyers on the topic of respect, Mr. Kinnard advised how important it is to respect your client, the jury, and yourself. He said, “Sometimes lawyers fail to respect the time of a juror. Jurors expect you to be organized and prepared. Do not waste their time. They want you to get to the point and sit down. Doing that requires you to be extremely competent, to know your case and to communicate it.” He emphasized that “respecting your client” means far more than just being competent as a lawyer. “Be your client’s friend. Due to tragic things that may have happened to your client, you may be one of the last friends your client says.”

Publications

Published writer. The following articles, written by Mr. Kinnard, have been published in state or national magazines:

  • Peremptory Challenges – How Many?
  • Mental Anguish Without Physical Injury
  • Is Your Action Really Time-Barred?
  • Damages in Children Death Cases
  • Discovery of Expert Opinions
  • The Personal Injury Trial – Less is More
  • New Tennessee Medical Malpractice Laws (2008)
  • Tennessee Medical Malpractice Laws Change Again (2009)
  • Lawyers Weekly USA, a prominent national law publication, featured Randy Kinnard as a MASTER OF TRIAL ADVOCACY in the article “THE WARRIOR WITHIN”

Service Activities

Volunteer in the community.

Mr. Kinnard is a volunteer for Alive Hospice. He serves on the Quality Council for Alive Hospice. He also is a board member of Centerstone, which is a not-for-profit organization helping over 40,000 with mental illnesses. He is on the Board of Directors of Friends of Warner Parks, which seeks to preserve hundreds of acres of parklands in Davidson County. For decades, Mr. Kinnard has supported The Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, which gives free legal services to poor people. When he was Chair of the fundraising campaign for Legal Aid, he helped raise over $700,000, setting a record. He has been a board member of his church, Sunday school teacher, and Scout leader. He is a member of the Exchange Club. He supports dozens of charitable organizations both local and national.

Nashville Business Journal writes a feature on Randall L. Kinnard. Read here.