§ 4-55-101 Creation — Composition — Governance — Attachment to Department of State — Meetings
§ 4-55-102 Employees of the Bureau
§ 4-55-103 Duties of the Bureau
§ 4-55-104 Disposition of All Fees, Appropriations and Penalties
§ 4-55-105 Regulatory Jurisdiction of Members of the Registry of Election Finance and of Members of the Ethics Commission
§ 4-55-106 Legislative Intent

Terms Used In Tennessee Code > Title 4 > Chapter 55 - Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance

  • Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
  • Affirmed: In the practice of the appellate courts, the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as rendered in the lower court.
  • Allegation: something that someone says happened.
  • Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
  • Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
  • Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
  • Appellate: About appeals; an appellate court has the power to review the judgement of another lower court or tribunal.
  • Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
  • Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
  • Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
  • Bail: Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
  • Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
  • Beneficiary: A person who is entitled to receive the benefits or proceeds of a will, trust, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity, or other contract. Source: OCC
  • Board: means the Tennessee board of court reporting. See Tennessee Code 20-9-602
  • Charge to the jury: The judge's instructions to the jury concerning the law that applies to the facts of the case on trial.
  • Code: includes the Tennessee Code and all amendments and revisions to the code and all additions and supplements to the code. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
  • Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
  • Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • Consumer: means any natural person who resides, is present or is domiciled in this state, or who is or may become a plaintiff or complainant in a dispute in this state. See Tennessee Code 47-16-102
  • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
  • Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
  • Court reporter: A person who makes a word-for-word record of what is said in court and produces a transcript of the proceedings upon request.
  • Court reporting: means the making of a verbatim record by means of manual shorthand, machine shorthand, closed microphone voice dictation silencer or by electronic recording of any testimony given under oath before or for submission to, any court, referee or court examiner, by any board, commission or other body or in any other proceeding where a verbatim record is required. See Tennessee Code 20-9-602
  • Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
  • Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • Deposition: An oral statement made before an officer authorized by law to administer oaths. Such statements are often taken to examine potential witnesses, to obtain discovery, or to be used later in trial.
  • Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
  • Dismissal: The dropping of a case by the judge without further consideration or hearing. Source:
  • Docket: A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.
  • Equitable: Pertaining to civil suits in "equity" rather than in "law." In English legal history, the courts of "law" could order the payment of damages and could afford no other remedy. See damages. A separate court of "equity" could order someone to do something or to cease to do something. See, e.g., injunction. In American jurisprudence, the federal courts have both legal and equitable power, but the distinction is still an important one. For example, a trial by jury is normally available in "law" cases but not in "equity" cases. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Federal Reserve System: The central bank of the United States. The Fed, as it is commonly called, regulates the U.S. monetary and financial system. The Federal Reserve System is composed of a central governmental agency in Washington, D.C. (the Board of Governors) and twelve regional Federal Reserve Banks in major cities throughout the United States. Source: OCC
  • Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
  • Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
  • Fixed Rate: Having a "fixed" rate means that the APR doesn't change based on fluctuations of some external rate (such as the "Prime Rate"). In other words, a fixed rate is a rate that is not a variable rate. A fixed APR can change over time, in several circumstances:
    • You are late making a payment or commit some other default, triggering an increase to a penalty rate
    • The bank changes the terms of your account and you do not reject the change.
    • The rate expires (if the rate was fixed for only a certain period of time).
  • Forbearance: A means of handling a delinquent loan. A
  • Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
  • Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
  • Garnishment: Generally, garnishment is a court proceeding in which a creditor asks a court to order a third party who owes money to the debtor or otherwise holds assets belonging to the debtor to turn over to the creditor any of the debtor
  • Grand jury: agreement providing that a lender will delay exercising its rights (in the case of a mortgage,
  • Guarantor: A party who agrees to be responsible for the payment of another party's debts should that party default. Source: OCC
  • Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
  • Habeas corpus: A writ that is usually used to bring a prisoner before the court to determine the legality of his imprisonment. It may also be used to bring a person in custody before the court to give testimony, or to be prosecuted.
  • Home loan: means a loan which is:
    1. Secured by real estate owned and occupied by the borrower for family residential purposes and which may include not more than three (3) additional residential units. See Tennessee Code 47-15-101
    2. Indictment: The formal charge issued by a grand jury stating that there is enough evidence that the defendant committed the crime to justify having a trial; it is used primarily for felonies.
    3. Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
    4. Interest rate: The amount paid by a borrower to a lender in exchange for the use of the lender's money for a certain period of time. Interest is paid on loans or on debt instruments, such as notes or bonds, either at regular intervals or as part of a lump sum payment when the issue matures. Source: OCC
    5. Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
    6. Jurisprudence: The study of law and the structure of the legal system.
    7. Juror: A person who is on the jury.
    8. Lands: includes lands, tenements and hereditaments, and all rights thereto and interests therein, equitable as well as legal. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    9. Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
    10. Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
    11. Lien: A claim against real or personal property in satisfaction of a debt.
    12. Life estate: A property interest limited in duration to the life of the individual holding the interest (life tenant).
    13. Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
    14. Litigation financier: means a person, entity or partnership engaged in the business of litigation financing. See Tennessee Code 47-16-102
    15. Minor: means any person who has not attained eighteen (18) years of age. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    16. Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
    17. Mistrial: An invalid trial, caused by fundamental error. When a mistrial is declared, the trial must start again from the selection of the jury.
    18. Month: means a calendar month. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    19. Mortgage: The written agreement pledging property to a creditor as collateral for a loan.
    20. Oath: includes affirmation. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    21. Oath: A promise to tell the truth.
    22. Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
    23. Partnership: A voluntary contract between two or more persons to pool some or all of their assets into a business, with the agreement that there will be a proportional sharing of profits and losses.
    24. Person: includes a corporation, firm, company or association. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    25. Petit jury: A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons.
    26. Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
    27. Plea: In a criminal case, the defendant's statement pleading "guilty" or "not guilty" in answer to the charges, a declaration made in open court.
    28. Pleadings: Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In the federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.
    29. Property: includes both personal and real property. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    30. Public law: A public bill or joint resolution that has passed both chambers and been enacted into law. Public laws have general applicability nationwide.
    31. Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
    32. Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
    33. real property: include lands, tenements and hereditaments, and all rights thereto and interests therein, equitable as well as legal. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    34. Record: means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in a perceivable form. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    35. Recourse: An arrangement in which a bank retains, in form or in substance, any credit risk directly or indirectly associated with an asset it has sold (in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles) that exceeds a pro rata share of the bank's claim on the asset. If a bank has no claim on an asset it has sold, then the retention of any credit risk is recourse. Source: FDIC
    36. Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
    37. Reporter: Makes a record of court proceedings and prepares a transcript, and also publishes the court's opinions or decisions (in the courts of appeals).
    38. Representative: when applied to those who represent a decedent, includes executors and administrators, unless the context implies heirs and distributees. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    39. Rescission: The cancellation of budget authority previously provided by Congress. The Impoundment Control Act of 1974 specifies that the President may propose to Congress that funds be rescinded. If both Houses have not approved a rescission proposal (by passing legislation) within 45 days of continuous session, any funds being withheld must be made available for obligation.
    40. Restitution: The court-ordered payment of money by the defendant to the victim for damages caused by the criminal action.
    41. Right of rescission: Right to cancel, within three business days, a contract that uses the home of a person as collateral, except in the case of a first mortgage loan. There is no fee to the borrower, who receives a full refund of all fees paid. The right of rescission is guaranteed by the Truth in Lending Act (TILA). Source: OCC
    42. Sequester: To separate. Sometimes juries are sequestered from outside influences during their deliberations.
    43. Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
    44. Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
    45. signed: includes a mark, the name being written near the mark and witnessed, or any other symbol or methodology executed or adopted by a party with intention to authenticate a writing or record, regardless of being witnessed. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    46. State: when applied to the different parts of the United States, includes the District of Columbia and the several territories of the United States. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    47. Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
    48. Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
    49. Summons: Another word for subpoena used by the criminal justice system.
    50. Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
    51. Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
    52. Transcript: A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation, as in a transcript of a hearing or oral deposition.
    53. Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
    54. Trust account: A general term that covers all types of accounts in a trust department, such as estates, guardianships, and agencies. Source: OCC
    55. Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
    56. Truth in Lending Act: The Truth in Lending Act is a federal law that requires lenders to provide standardized information so that borrowers can compare loan terms. In general, lenders must provide information on Source: OCC
    57. Uniform Commercial Code: A set of statutes enacted by the various states to provide consistency among the states' commercial laws. It includes negotiable instruments, sales, stock transfers, trust and warehouse receipts, and bills of lading. Source: OCC
    58. United States: includes the District of Columbia and the several territories of the United States. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    59. Usury: Charging an illegally high interest rate on a loan. Source: OCC
    60. Variable Rate: Having a "variable" rate means that the APR changes from time to time based on fluctuations in an external rate, normally the Prime Rate. This external rate is known as the "index." If the index changes, the variable rate normally changes. Also see Fixed Rate.
    61. Venue: The geographical location in which a case is tried.
    62. Verdict: The decision of a petit jury or a judge.
    63. Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.
    64. written: includes printing, typewriting, engraving, lithography, and any other mode of representing words and letters. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
    65. Year: means a calendar year, unless otherwise expressed. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105