Originally from Bristol, Tennessee, Benj practices law in Knoxville, Tennessee with his firm, Watson, Roach, Batson & Lauderback, PLC. He is licensed to practice in the State of Tennessee, the United States District Courts for both the Eastern and Middle Districts of Tennessee and the United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit. He has an active trial and courtroom practice having litigated numerous cases in state and federal courts throughout Tennessee since 2000. He has been involved in many appellate cases arguing before both the Federal Sixth Circuit and the State of Tennessee Court of Appeals. He is a current member of the Knoxville Bar Association and the Tennessee Bar Association.
After attending and receiving his undergraduate degree from the University of Tennessee, Benj attended and earned his J.D. from the Nashville School of Law. He has practiced law for the past twenty-one years. Prior to that he worked as an insurance adjuster for four years. He serves as litigation counsel for multiple municipalities across Tennessee in both the trial attorney and consultant capacities. He has spoken as an invited participant at many conferences and seminars. He has participated in various panel discussions with members of the judiciary, other attorneys and other legal professionals. Benj’s areas of practice include law enforcement and governmental entity civil rights defense, employment defense, governmental and general tort liability defense, personal injury and the accompanying appellate work associated with those areas of practice.
He is married and he and his wife, Christy, have four children. He spends as much of his off time as he can with them in the outdoors and coaching club soccer.
- Knoxville Bar Association
- Tennessee Bar Association
- J.D., Nashville School of Law, Nashville, TN, 2000
- B.S., University of Tennessee, College of Communications, Knoxville, TN, 1995
- Tennessee, 2000
- United States District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee, 2002
- United States District Court, Middle District of Tennessee, 2004
- United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 2002
Brumley v. City of Cleveland (2019)
Obtained defense verdict after three day bench trial in employment discrimination matter involving whistleblower and retaliation claims.
Cooley v. E. Tennessee Human Res. Agency (2017)
Appellate court affirmed grant of summary judgment in employment discrimination case by transit driver who failed fitness for duty evaluation that claimed disability discrimination and violations of the ADA and FMLA.
Stiles ex rel. D.S. v. Grainger Cty., Tenn (2016)
Obtained favorable opinion in the Sixth Circuit in school bullying and education law matter.
Coffey v. City of Oak Ridge (2014)
Prevailed in Tennessee Court of Appeals after a grant of summary judgment in an employment discrimination matter brought be a police officer alleging whisteblower retaliation and constructive discharge.