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W. Gerald Tidwell

Managing Partner

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A lifelong resident of Chattanooga, W. Gerald "Jerry" Tidwell has been practicing law for 39 plus years. His entire career has been spent as a trial lawyer. His focus of practice is defending civil damage suits. Jerry primarily defends civil rights lawsuits, construction suits, and commercial claims. He also represents plaintiffs in construction cases, personal injury claims, and commercial actions. Probate work and trust/estate disputes round out his case roster.

Mr. Tidwell's representative clients over the years include Auto Owners Insurance Company, Owners Insurance Company, National Lloyds Insurance Company, the Police Benevolent Association for whom he is general counsel to the State of Tennessee, the Fraternal Order of Police, the City of Chattanooga, Hamilton County, and many private business owners and individuals. He has represented such far-flung interests as Wichita County Texas and Prince William County Virginia in federal Court actions in Chattanooga.

Jerry is well known as a gifted and creative advocate for his clients-especially in front of juries. Jerry knows his audience and can enthrall any audience. He checks his ego at the door, keeps tabs on the temperature of the judge and jury, and does what works best for his clients. His dedication starts in his thorough investigation of cases and carries through in trial preparation. Although many of his clients' cases do not go to trial, being prepared for trial often helps end cases early via summary judgment motions or settlements.

Jerry Tidwell graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in 1979 with honors and the University of Tennessee, College of Law in 1982. He began his practice in Chattanooga immediately after taking the bar exam and has continued ever since. He has three grown sons. The youngest, Matthew Tidwell, is also a lawyer and joined the family practice in 2020.

Mr. Tidwell works in all Tennessee state trial and appellate courts, the U.S. District Court and federal Courts of Appeals, Georgia state courts, and the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. Jerry is also admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 2021, Jerry was awarded the highest honor for a Chattanooga attorney when he was selected by his peers to be inducted into the Chattanooga Bar Foundation.

Although the practice keeps Jerry very busy, he tries to escape work from time to time to enjoy mountain biking and hiking with his wife, Dianne Tidwell, who runs the firm for Jerry.


  • University of Tennessee College of Law, Knoxville, Tennessee
    • J.D. - 1982
  • University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, Tennessee
    • B.A. - 1979
    • Honors: Graduated with honors

Professional Associations

  • Tennessee Bar Association
  • Chattanooga Bar Association

Practice Areas

  • Civil Rights Lawsuit Defense
  • Construction Issues
  • Probate and Estates
  • Business Disputes
  • Personal Injury

Bar Admissions

  • Georgia, 2020
  • Tennessee, 1982
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Tennessee
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Georgia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • Inducted into the Chattanooga Bar Foundation, 2021