New Tennessee Laws Effective January 2023


With the beginning of every new year a new assemblage of bills become effective.  Here are the laws that will become effective in January of 2023 listed under general categories.

Public Safety

This legislation enacts “Dallas’s Law,” which revises various provisions governing the training of both armed and unarmed security guards/officers, including the understanding of the legalities of the job, first aid, and de-escalation techniques.


The state fire marshal has requested provisions concerning minimum statewide building construction safety standards concerning multi-level commercial and residential structures relative to mitigating structural collapse that may result from explosive devices, including, but not limited to, methods to deter entry into a structure by a motor vehicle.


If a person who has been found guilty of driving under the influence is ordered to install and use an ignition interlock device, this law notes the requirements that must be met to install the device.



Known as the “Tennessee Abortion-Inducing Drug Risk Protocol Act,” this law requires anyone desiring an abortion-inducing drug to appear in person to obtain the drug, and that no manufacturer, supplier, pharmacy, physician, qualified physician, or other person will be able to provide the abortion-inducing drug to a patient via courier, delivery, or mail service. It also requires specific testing to take place before the drug may be administered.


Various changes to the qualifications for certification as a medication aide by the board of nursing is enacted by this law. It governs age minimum and areas of instruction.


Revising various provisions governing pharmacy benefits and pharmacy benefits managers, the main thrust of the bill is ensuring that pharmacies are not paid less than the real cost of the prescription drug or device.


This new law will require a health carrier, health benefit plan, or utilization review organization that denies coverage of a prescription drug for the treatment of a medical condition through the use of a step therapy protocol to provide access to a clear, readily accessible, and convenient process for a patient or prescribing practitioner to request a step therapy exception. It is a matter of public interest that the general assembly requires health insurers to base step therapy protocols on appropriate clinical practice guidelines or published peer-reviewed data developed by independent experts with knowledge of the condition or conditions under consideration; that patients be exempt from step therapy protocols when those protocols are inappropriate or otherwise not in the best interest of the patients; and that patients have access to a fair, transparent, and independent process for requesting an exception to a step therapy protocol when the patient’s physician deems appropriate.


If a utilization review agent requires additional information from an enrollee, a provider, or healthcare facility to make a determination on a request for prior authorization on a patient’s medical claim, then, no later than five business days after receipt of the request, the agent shall notify the enrollee in writing, email or respective electronic portals of the additional information needed to make the determination. Also, the provider or healthcare facility must also be contacted through email or respective electronic portals of the additional information needed to make the determination.


Revising current provisions governing the requirements for mental health professional counselors, it will require completed coursework specifically related to the diagnosis, treatment, appraisal, and assessment of mental disorders; and have completed two years of postgraduate supervised experience required for licensure in a clinical setting that provides substantial opportunities to diagnose, treat, appraise, and assess mental disorders.



A County Local Education Agency (LEA) will have to have a written agreement if they are operating a school within the geographic boundaries of a Municipal LEA or the Municipal LEA may purchase the school from the county at fair market value.



As enacted, this law establishes a voluntary shared work unemployment benefits program that allows certain employers to submit to the department of labor and workforce development for approval a plan to reduce employee work hours in exchange for employee access to a certain level of unemployment compensation benefits.



Pursuant to a specific set of criteria this law outlines a relative caregiver program for foster care and authorizes the department to implement an extension of the foster care program to provide services to youth transitioning from state custody to adulthood.


Written to address campaign contribution ethics and financial record keeping, starting with reports covering periods beginning on and after January 16, 2023, if any candidate files a contribution statement with more than thirty percent (30%) of the candidate’s contributions reported as un-itemized contributions, then the candidate’s contributions shall automatically be audited by the registry.


Emergency communications personnel are now eligible for early service retirement when the employing entity has elected to offer this benefit. The law requires the employing entity to be responsible for 100 percent of any increased cost necessary to provide this benefit to the emergency communications personnel.


This law authorizes an assessor of property to display “UNLISTED” for the first and last name in the ownership field of an online searchable database of property when the residential property owner files a written request with the assessor to display the ownership field for their property as “UNLISTED,” and when the written request includes sufficient information to clearly demonstrate to the assessor that the subject property is the primary residence of the residential property owner.

Real Estate


Notice of cancellation of a time-share contract can now legally be made by email.

Liquor Sales


This law does not prohibit a retailer from offering a discount in such a manner as the retailer deems appropriate as long as the discount being offered is not below the cost to the retailer.


Establishment of a common carrier license to be issued by the alcoholic beverage commission to a person, firm, or corporation that transports goods for a fee and maintains a regularly established schedule of service within this state to transport wine from a winery direct shipper licensee or a fulfillment house licensee to residents of this state is the action of this new law.



Making the wording of automatic sign-up and renewal offers clear and concise, as well as requiring a business that allows someone to sign up for a service or subscription online to provide the option to cancel the service or subscription online without additional steps is the thrust of this new law.


This law specifies that a trustee for an improvement care trust fund may establish a separate trust for each individual cemetery or cemetery company, or a master trust for multiple cemetery companies; specifies that a trustee for pre-need cemetery contracts may establish a separate trust fund for each contract, a single trust fund for all contracts written by an individual cemetery, or a single trust fund for all contracts written by multiple cemetery companies; and it makes other changes related to the establishment and management of an improvement care trust fund or a trust fund for a pre-need cemetery contract.

Farm Relief

An additional law will provide sales tax exemptions to farmers on items and services used for agriculture production, including building materials, repair services, and labor, among other expenses used in agriculture production. The goal of this law is to keep small family farms operating.


And one more law will provide mandatory training to nonprofit charitable organization personnel in the identification, intervention, prevention and treatment of human trafficking victims.


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