Under Tennessee law, a Conservator is "a person or persons or an entity appointed by the court to exercise the decision-making rights and duties of the person with a disability in one or more areas in which the person lacks capacity as determined and required by orders of the court." Tenn. Code Ann. §34-1-101(4)(B). Similar to a conservator, but not quite the same, is a Guardianship. In Tennessee a Guardian, or coguardian, is defined as "a person or persons appointed by the court to provide partial or full supervision, protection and assistance of the person or property, or both, of a minor." Tenn. Code Ann. §34-1-101(10). It is important to realize the difference between a Conservator and a Guardian. A Conservator protects any person, regardless of age, who is disabled in a way that affects their capacity. A guardianships purpose is to protect a minor child; they automatically do not have capacity based on their age.
On December 27, 2017, the Tennessee Supreme Court ruled in Spires v. Simpson to clarify the conditions in which one may bring about a wrongful death suit and the appropriate acquisition of remedies, specifically when filed by parents who owe child support. In instances of wrongful death, parties may bring claims to affirm that the deceased individual's passing is the result of negligence or misconduct that may have resulted in significant and quantifiable damages.