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New laws in Tennessee for 2020 deal with cancer treatments, opioid abuse, concealed carry permits, and more

18 new laws taking effect on New Year’s Day cover a variety of important issues impacted our everyday lives.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – 18 new laws taking effect on New Year’s Day cover a variety of important issues impacted our everyday lives.

Under a new law, a type of gun permit will cost $65. You can take the training online, there’s no hands-on component, but it’s a “concealed only” permit. The only handgun law prior to this, now called the “enhanced gun permit,” lets you carry a gun concealed or not, but it costs $100, an eight-hour, hands-on class, and a background check.

The ongoing opioid crisis in Tennessee could see some fight back from lawmakers with a new law requiring electronic prescriptions. ​Any prescription for an opioid must be issued through an electronic software. ​The point is to cut back on fraudulent opioid prescriptions from doctors. ​The deadline for doctors to have compliant software is January 1, 2021.

There’s a new thing you can shop for, and it’s healthcare services. ​The “Right to Shop” law will enforce transparency from health insurance companies. ​You’ll now get the option to see the out-of-pocket pricing for services such as x-rays, MRIs, and physical therapy.​

There’s also a new type of cancer therapy you might not have heard of, and it’s called “proton therapy.”​ Proton therapy claims to be more accurate and efficient with little risk form of treatment for cancers such as lung, brain, neck, and breast. ​State health insurance plans now need to extend coverage for this type of therapy.

There’s now a greater punishment for elder abuse. ​It’s a felony murder charge if an elderly person dies from aggravated neglect.

Police and firefighters who are a part of the state retirement plan are eligible for service retirement upon twenty-five years of creditable service

New laws in Tennessee for 2020 include:

School Transportation – As enacted, reduces, from 25 to 23, the age required for a person to receive an initial school bus endorsement if the person is an honorably discharged veteran of the United States armed forces, a member of the national guard or reserves, or a licensed teacher employed by an LEA. – Amends TCA Title 49 and Title 55.

Assessors – As enacted, changes the date, from October 1 of each year to April 15 of each year, by which assessors in counties, other than counties with a metropolitan form of government, must file that year’s property maps with the register of deeds. – Amends TCA Section 67-5-806.

Contractors – As enacted, establishes continuing education requirements for residential contractors. – Amends TCA Title 4, Chapter 5 and Title 62, Chapter 6.

State Employees – As enacted, extends continued health coverage to the surviving spouses and children of park rangers who are killed in the line of duty to the same extent as survivors of other first responders who are killed in the line of duty. – Amends TCA Title 7; Title 8; Title 11 and Title 58.

Insurance, Health, Accident – As enacted, enacts the “Proton Therapy Access Act.”  – Amends TCA Title 8; Title 56 and Title 71.

Process, Service of – As enacted, revises provisions governing identifying the person who makes service of process. – Amends TCA Section 16-15-901.

Codes – As enacted, beginning January 1, 2020, requires electrical inspectors employed by a municipality, a county, or this state to be certified by the state fire marshal; establishes a recertification process for such electrical inspectors every three years; requires certain electrical inspectors under contract with the commissioner of commerce and insurance to be certified on and after January 1, 2020. – Amends TCA Title 68.

Consumer Protection – As enacted, requires travel promoters to use trust accounts to avoid commingling their funds with customer funds that are held for disbursement for payment of travel services. – Amends TCA Title 47 and Title 62.

Employees, Employers – As enacted, revises provisions governing determination of whether an employer-employee relationship exists in certain employment arrangements. – Amends TCA Title 50.

Consumer Protection – As enacted, enacts the “Healthcare Billing Clarity Act.” – Amends TCA Title 33; Title 47, Chapter 18; Title 56; Title 63; Title 68 and Title 71. 362 Pensions and Retirement Benefits – As enacted, makes police officers and firefighters who are members of the state retirement system eligible for service retirement upon completion of 25 years of creditable service. – Amends TCA Title 8, Chapter 34; Title 8, Chapter 35; Title 8, Chapter 36 and Title 8, Chapter 37.

Insurance Companies, Agents, Brokers, Policies – As enacted, enacts the “Tennessee Right to Shop Act.”  – Amends TCA Title 8; Title 33; Title 56; Title 63 and Title 68. 436 Taxes, Real Property – As enacted, expands definition of agricultural land for purposes of greenbelt property tax program to include two noncontiguous tracts of land within same county totaling at least 15 acres and split only by a road, body of water, or public or private easement. – Amends TCA Title 67, Chapter 5, Part 10.

Elder Abuse – As enacted, enacts the “Elderly and Vulnerable Adult Protection Act of 2019.” – Amends TCA Title 39; Title 40 and Title 71.

Highways, Roads and Bridges – As enacted, changes the requirements for the operation of horse drawn vehicles on state highways. – Amends TCA Title 55, Chapter 9, Part 4. 479 Handgun Permits – As enacted, creates a concealed handgun carry permit, which allows a person to carry a concealed handgun; redesignates the existing handgun carry permit as an enhanced handgun carry permit. – Amends TCA Title 10; Title 33; Title 38 and Title 39.

Professions and Occupations – As enacted, allows certain persons who receive certified occupational training as a prisoner or a student in a high school technical training class to receive equivalent credit toward an occupational license relating to the training received. – Amends TCA Title 4, Chapter 6, Part 1; Title 37; Title 38; Title 41; Title 49; Title 62 and Title 63.

Firefighters – As enacted, creates a program managed by the commissioner of commerce and insurance to annually award grants to volunteer fire departments for the purchase of firefighting equipment or to meet local match requirements for federal grants for the purchase of firefighting equipment and training. – Amends TCA Title 68, Chapter 102.