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Dual Office Holding

Reference Number: MTAS-181
Reviewed Date: 01/14/2019

The Tennessee Constitution (Article II, Section 26) prohibits "any person in this state" from holding "more than one lucrative office at the same time." The Tennessee courts have held that this prohibition applies only to holding two state offices, not to holding a state office and a local government office or two local government offices (see Boswell v. Powell, 163 Tenn. 445, 43 S.W.2d 495 (1931)). For that reason, a municipal officer may serve in the General Assembly or another local government seat unless otherwise prohibited by law. Some municipal charters forbid dual office holding of various kinds. Such charter provisions generally have been upheld. State and city could properly adopt statutes and ordinances for purpose of preventing an individual from holding public offices which would create a conflict of interest. T.C.A. §§ 6-215, 6-626, 6-627.