Terms Used In Tennessee Code 40-30-122

  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • Precedent: A court decision in an earlier case with facts and law similar to a dispute currently before a court. Precedent will ordinarily govern the decision of a later similar case, unless a party can show that it was wrongly decided or that it differed in some significant way.

For purposes of this part, a new rule of constitutional criminal law is announced if the result is not dictated by precedent existing at the time the petitioner’s conviction became final and application of the rule was susceptible to debate among reasonable minds. A new rule of constitutional criminal law shall not be applied retroactively in a post-conviction proceeding unless the new rule places primary, private individual conduct beyond the power of the criminal law-making authority to proscribe or requires the observance of fairness safeguards that are implicit in the concept of ordered liberty.