W. Lewis Jenkins Jr.

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Practice Areas

  • Business and Property Disputes
  • Estate Planning
  • Probate and Will Contests
  • Elder Law
  • Business Formation and Contract Drafting
  • Trusts and Trust Administration
  • Personal Injury
  • Tort and Civil Rights Claims
  • Employment-Related Counseling and Litigation
  • Family Law (adoptions, antenuptial agreements, and complex divorces)
  • Bankruptcy Law
  • Criminal Law


Lewis Jenkins possesses a wide and deep range of experience and expertise:  he is a Board Certified Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and has tried over seventy-five cases, including complicated business and property disputes, employment-related cases, tort claims, domestic relations matters, and criminal cases, to both juries and judges, and also maintains a transactional and tax practice, with an emphasis on estate planning, trust drafting and administration, and business planning.  Lewis has an extensive dispositive motion and appellate practice, having personally written over one hundred dispositive motions and responses and appellate briefs, on subjects including employment discrimination, breach of contract, health care liability, tax disputes, domestic relations, wrongful death claims, probate (will contests and spousal elections), bank liability, civil rights and constitutional law (including Second Amendment rights), criminal law, and other areas of law.  Lewis has obtained judgments of over one million dollars by summary judgment motion and by jury verdict.  Lewis’s breadth of experience means that he brings discernment and broad perspective to the representation of every client, and in every matter, large or small, whether the situation involves litigation, counseling, or a transaction.

Lewis attended Vanderbilt University (1984-1988) on a scholarship from the United States Marine Corps, and received his undergraduate degree there, with Honors in History, in 1988.  He received the Marine Corps League Award as the Marine Corps honor graduate from Vanderbilt University NROTC in 1988, and served over four years on active duty with the Marines (1988-1992).

After leaving active duty with the Marines, Lewis attended Vanderbilt Law School and received a J.D. degree in 1995, and he also graduated from the University of Alabama School of Law with an LL.M. in Taxation (magna cum laude) in 2012.  Lewis received a postgraduate certificate in Maritime Law (2017), a post-graduate diploma in Economic Regulation (2018), and an LL.M. in Legal Theory and History (2018), all from the University of London.  He completed all his post-J.D. educational endeavors while engaged in practice full-time, trying cases and completing transactions for his clients and pursuing further education in the evenings and on weekends.

Lewis is a Master at the Bench of the Howell Edmunds Jackson American Inn of Court, and served as a Hearing Panel Member for the Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility (District VIII), from 2012 to 2018.  Lewis volunteers with the Tennessee Bar Association Appellate Pro Bono Project and received the West Tennessee Legal Services Pro Bono Award in May 2013.  Lewis is a Sustaining Fellow and Member of the Board of Trustees of the Tennessee Bar Foundation and is a 2008 graduate of the Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law program.  Lewis served on the Tennessee Judicial Nominating Commission from 2009 to 2013, and in that capacity participated statewide in the selection of trial and appellate court judges for Tennessee courts.  Lewis has served for over fifteen years as a volunteer member of the Dyer County Governmental Library Commission and over twenty years as a member of the Tennessee Bar Association Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility.

Lewis speaks often at continuing legal education seminars on the topics of trial practice, professional responsibility, and the rule of law.  He conducts independent research, and his primary research area presently focuses on the history and significance of the Nuremberg trials (primarily the Nuremberg Military Tribunal, or “follow on” trials) as related to the rule of law, the selection of judicial officers, and the peaceful resolution of international disputes; Lewis has made presentations on the research to several bar associations and legal groups.

Lewis is a member of diverse professional organizations, including the Federalist Society, the American Society for Legal History, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, the American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy, Tennessee Bar Association, the Missouri Bar, and the American Bar Association.

Lewis served in his community for over ten years as a Director of the New Life Union Mission and from 2015-2018 served as president of that board.  He also is a Member and Sunday School teacher at First United Methodist Church of Dyersburg, Tennessee and has served on various church committees over the years.  Lewis also volunteers in the Vanderbilt University School of Law Alumni Admission Interview Program.

Outside work, Lewis enjoys fishing, hiking, and camping with his family, and is a life member of both Trout Unlimited and the National Rifle Association.  Lewis is an Eagle Scout (1983) and a life member of Veterans of Foreign Wars.  Lewis and his family operate a small farm in rural Dyer County, raising cattle and goats.


  • Vanderbilt University School of Law, Nashville, Tennessee
    • J.D. - 1995
  • The University of Alabama School of Law, Tuscaloosa, Alabama
    • LL.M. (Taxation) - 2012
  • University of London, London
    • LL.M. (Legal Theory and History, 2018); Postgraduate Diploma in Laws (Economic Regulation, 2018); Postgraduate Certificate in Laws (Maritime Law, 2017)
  • Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
    • B.S.

Bar Admissions

  • Tennessee, 1995
  • Missouri, 1996
  • Supreme Court of the United States of America
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Tennessee
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Tennessee
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Tennessee
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Missouri, 1997
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Arkansas
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Estate Planning Law Specialist