550 West Main Street, Suite 500 | Knoxville, TN 37902 | Office 865.546.9321 | Fax 865.637.5249

John M. Lawhorn

Born just a few miles down the interstate in Oak Ridge, John M. Lawhorn is the quintessential East Tennessean. He grew up in this area and attended college at Carson-Newman University in Jefferson City before returning to Knoxville and his East Tennessee home.

After graduating from University of Tennessee College of Law in 1987, he moved to the gulf coast where he gained his first 3 years of experience practicing law. While there, he was admitted to the Alabama Bar, as well as the Florida Bar. By early 1990 however, John was ready to return to Knoxville and soon thereafter was admitted to the Tennessee Bar and joined Frantz, McConnell & Seymour, LLP.

John’s greatest strengths are his dedication to his clients’ needs and his exceptionally knowledgeable, responsive representation of them. He puts his clients at ease by quickly addressing any questions or concerns they might have and makes certain they understand their legal situation completely while also presenting them with every available option.

John practices primarily in the area of labor and employment law, which includes workplace discrimination, harassment, retaliation claims, labor/management relations, employment contracts and advising employers on statutory and regulatory compliance issues under both federal and state law, including OSHA, FMLA, ADA and wage and hour laws. John’s clients include both large and small employers, as well as employees who have disputes and claims against their employers. In addition, John regularly represents clients in other areas such as personal injury, products liability, consumer protection, business litigation and general civil litigation.

John is listed as a Rule 31 general civil mediator by the Tennessee Supreme Court. He is also listed as a court certified mediator by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. Among his many other accomplishments are the following:

  • He has tried numerous cases, both jury and non-jury, in State courts throughout East Tennessee and in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee.
  • He has represented clients regarding appellate matters before the Tennessee Court of Appeals, the Tennessee Supreme Court and the US. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • He is admitted to practice in the United States Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, the United States District Courts for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Tennessee and the Southern District of Alabama.
  • He is a member of numerous legal organizations, including the Knoxville and Tennessee Bar Associations, the Tennessee Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates and the Defense Research Institute.
  • He is a member of the American Health Lawyers Association (AHLA) and is involved in its Labor & Employment, Physician Organizations and Hospitals & Health Systems practice groups.
  • He is a Fellow of the Knoxville Bar Foundation.
  • He was named a “Super Lawyer” in the area of Labor & Employment.
  • He was recognized by Best Lawyers as the 2021 “Lawyer of the Year” for Labor Law – Management in the Knoxville area.

Outside of work, John enjoys spending as much time as possible with his family. As a father of four sons, he has long enjoyed coaching both baseball and basketball youth teams. An avid outdoorsman, he relishes every opportunity he gets to backpack in the Appalachian Mountains while also enjoying wilderness travel.

John also is involved with several charitable organizations. He has been on the Board of Directors for Susannah’s House, which serves the needs of chemically dependent mothers and their infants who are recovering from substance abuse. He is a former Board President for Big Brothers-Big Sisters of East Tennessee and currently serves as its General Counsel.

Client-focused and extremely accessible and adaptable, John’s primary concern is making sure his clients get the best representation possible and are fully informed about all aspects of their legal situation.


      • B.A. Carson Newman College, 1984 (Magna Cum Laude)
      • J.D. University of Tennessee, 1987 (with Honors)

      Practice Areas


        Arbitration & Mediation







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