Guardianship Laws

Supported Decision-Making

State Legislation

  • S. 264, 110th Gen. Assem., Reg. Sess, (Tenn. 2017)
    • Description: The originally introduced bill would have codified Supported Decision-Making Agreements.  The final version instead defines least restrictive alternatives (“techniques and processes that preserve as many decision-making rights as practical under the particular circumstances for the person with a disability”) and does not specifically reference SDM.
    • Status: Enacted 4/2/2018
    • Public Link: http://wapp.capitol.tn.gov/apps/BillInfo/default.aspx?BillNumber=SB0264&GA=110
None found

Case Law & Court Orders

None found

State Grant Programs

  • 2019-2022 ACL Grant
    • Summary: the State of Tennessee was awarded a grant from the federal Administration on Community Living (ACL) to promote alternatives to guardianship including Supported Decision-Making. This funding was used to develop and support the Tennessee Center for Decision-Making Support.
  • 2018/2019 State Grantee: Disability Rights Tennessee (www.disabilityrightstn.org)
    • Summary: Disability Rights Tennessee (DRT) researched, created, and tested messages explaining SDM as a viable alternative to conservatorship, in collaboration with other partner agencies involved with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD)  By using focus groups, this project generated and tested messaging specifically for: (1) educational school professionals (i.e. teachers, administration and staff); (2) legal professionals working  with people with I/DD and their families; and (3) people with I/DD and their families.  This project developed SDM messages that are easy to understand by target groups, relevant to something that is important to them, compelling them to take action, and seen as a viable alternative to conservatorship. DRT published resources to highlight research, best practices, and SDM tools with this messaging to incorporate and collaborate within the entire NRC-SDM network.
    • Final Report
    • SDM Messaging in Tennessee
    • Contact: Lisa Primm, Executive Director, Disability Rights Tennessee, lisap@disabilityrightstn.org, 615-298-1080
  • 2016/2017 Grantee: The Arc Tennessee (https://www.thearctn.org/)
    • Summary: The Arc Tennessee is part of a collaborative of disability and aging organizations that have partnered to increase awareness of Supported Decision-Making as a viable tool for people with disabilities and people who are aging through targeted educational outreach to people with I/DD and aging adults; family members; educators; judicial systems/attorneys/notaries; health care providers; government systems supporting people who have I/DD or aging adults; and financial institutions
    • Contact: Carrie Hobbs Guiden, Executive Director, The Arc Tennessee, cguiden@thearctn.org, 615-248-5878, Ext. 14

Other Resources

Information Last Updated: July 21, 2022