J. Russell Farrar

J. Russ Farrar, senior partner at Farrar Bates Berexa

J. Russell Farrar

Senior Partner



Since 1992, Russ has served as a co-founder and senior partner at Farrar Bates Berexa, where he practices in the areas of insurance defense, municipal liability defense, civil rights defense, police liability defense, governmental tort liability defense, employment law, employment discrimination, workers’ compensation, administrative law, governmental relations, real estate errors and omissions, entertainment law, trial and appellate litigation, and business law. Since 2002, Russ has been rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™, the only nationally recognized attorney rating service, and he was the recipient of the 2018 William (Bill) Tune Award for Excellence in Real Estate Education from the Tennessee Real Estate Commission.

Prior to joining Farrar Bates Berexa, Farrar served as assistant commissioner and chief legal counsel for the Tennessee Department of Labor and as director of the Department of Labor’s Division of Employment Codes.

Russ obtained his Juris Doctor degree with high honors, Order of the Coif, from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1984. He received his Bachelor of Science degree with highest honors from the University of Tennessee in 1980.

Russ currently serves as general counsel and senior lobbyist for the 32,000-plus member Tennessee REALTORS®; general counsel for Public Entity Partners, which insures more than 90 percent of Tennessee’s local governments; and chairman of the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development TOSHA Review Commission.


University of Tennessee College of Law, Doctor of Jurisprudence, 1984, High Honors, Order of the Coif, American Jurisprudence Award in Property, Family and Administrative Law

University of Tennessee, Bachelor of Science, 1980, Highest Honors


State of Tennessee
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee
United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

Presentations and Seminars:

Frequent guest lecturer for the Tennessee Municipal Attorneys Association, the Tennessee Public Risk Management Association, the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police and numerous realtor groups across the state


Tennessee Governmental Tort Liability Act, Tennessee Young Lawyers Journal (2000)
Liability of a Municipality for Injuries to a Passenger in a Fleeing Vehicle in a High-Speed Police Chase, Tennessee Bar Journal (2001)