Thomas M. Hale - Kramer Rayson LLP

Thomas M. Hale

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2008

Thomas M. Hale is an experienced, skilled and effective trial and transactional lawyer who brings a wealth of knowledge to his clients.  He is a solution seeker and problem solver and works hard as an advocate for his clients in an honest, straight-forward and professional manner,  He exercises sound and prudent judgment in advising them of the legal alternatives, and his ability to clearly explain how the facts and the law are likely to converge, and what the most likely outcome would be, is of great benefit to his clients.

Mr. Hale tries all types of civil cases in both the federal and state courts throughout East Tennessee with specific emphasis on business-related disputes in contract, corporate, employment and environmental areas.  He provides general commercial advice to local and national businesses. 

His broad practice includes: contract preparation and review; advice on entity issues (i.e., corporate, partnership, LLC); real property matters; Uniform Commercial Code issues; purchases and sales of business entities; purchases, sales and leases of commercial real property; advice on obtaining and making loans and advice in the formation and governance of legal entities.

For his corporate law practice, the prestigious, peer-review publication, Best Lawyers in America selected Mr. Hale for inclusion to its list each and every year since 2008, and also selected him as the "Knoxville Lawyer of the Year" in 2012.  He has also been included in this publication in 2011 for his litigation-commercial, land use and zoning, municipal and real estate law practices.  

Mr. Hale and his partner, Ed Rayson represented a minority shareholders of one of the largest private companies in Tennessee and, by preparing a case showing multiple ways in which the majority shareholder was oppressing the minority, they were able to help their clients secure substantial value for their shares.  

In another instance, by being thoughtful and thorough in defending a contractor's claim against his client, he was able to prove that his client had a more substantial claim against the contractor by using the contractor's own testimony.  His client had been prepared to pay to settle the case.

Mr. Hale led a team of the firm's layers in the successful representation of a well-known national restaurant chain in the defense of 60 lawsuits resulting from Hepatitis A exposure from consumption of produce supplied by a local supplier of produce and its supply chain.  

He recently concluded representation of a national developer in a suit for the reformation of the official plats governing a 200+ lot subdivision involving 300+ named defendants, including lot owners, lenders, utility providers and local governmental entities. 

The University of TennesseeBA 1976The University of TennesseeMBA 1980The University of TennesseeJ.D. 1980
Knoxville Bar AssocationEpiscopal Diocese of East TennesseeTown of FarragutKnoxville Bar FoundationLegal Aid of East TennesseeKnoxville Bar AssociationTennessee Bar AssociationAmerican Bar Association

Case History

City of Harriman v. City of Kingston, et al., 2011 Tenn. LEXIS 576 — Successfully represented municipality through the Tennessee Supreme Court in suit by a neighboring municipality in which both municipalities sought to strike down the annexation by the other of the same territory.
Jones v. Kayser-Roth Hosiery, Inc. 748 F. Supp. 1292 (E.D. Tenn. 1990) — One of the first cases brought as a class action under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) in which class of clients prevailed in recovering back pay and benefits for employer's failure to provide legally required notice of a plant closing.
DeFord v. Secretary of Labor and Tennessee Valley Authority, 700 F.2d 281 (6th Cir. 1983) — A whistleblower case brought under the Energy Reoganization Act of 1974, 42 USCA § 5851, where client was discriminated against because he assisted the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in an investigation of a plant owned by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
New Covenant Baptist Church v. Panther Sark, No. E2002-02693-COA-R3-CV, 2003 Tenn App. LEXIS 472 (Tenn. Ct. App. July 8, 2003) — Successfully enforced restrictive covenants governing a commercial office park subdivision in preventing adjacent landowner from using a lot in the subdivision for the main point of access to the adjoining property.
Birge v. Boeing, C/A No. 03A01-9609-CH-00295, 1997 Tenn. App. LEXIS 107 (Tenn. Ct. App. February 19, 1997) — Successfully defended employer's internal relocation policies as applied to management level employee. 

Office Location

800 South Gay Street, Suite 2500
P.O. Box 629
Knoxville, TN 37901
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2017 Lawyer of the Year in Corporate Law of the Knoxville Metro Area2014 Lawyer of the Year in Litigation - Real Estate of the Knoxville Metro Area2013 Lawyer of the Year in Corporate Law of the Knoxville Metro Area2012 Lawyer of the Year in Litigation - Real Estate of the Knoxville Metro Area2011 Lawyer of the Year in Corporate Law of the Knoxville Metro Area
Thomas M. Hale has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2017!Thomas M. Hale has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2014!Thomas M. Hale has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2013!Thomas M. Hale has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2012!Thomas M. Hale has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2011!

Practice Areas

Commercial Litigation
Corporate Law
Litigation - Land Use and Zoning
Litigation - Municipal
Litigation - Real Estate