Public Protection consists of five divisions dedicated to preserving the rights of Tennesseans in the areas of consumer issues and crime.
The Consumer Advocate and Protection Division consists of three teams. The Consumer Protection team protects con-sumers and businesses from unfair and deceptive trade practices, enforces state and federal antitrust laws, and enforces the Unauthorized Practice of Law statutes. The Consumer Advocate team represents the interests of Tennessee consum-ers of public utilities services. The False Claims team handles non-Medicaid false claims matters.
The Criminal Justice Division handles all appellate matters involved in procuring and defending criminal judgments in the state appellate courts. Division attorneys are responsible for interlocutory, extraordinary, direct and post-conviction appeals and for defending criminal judgments in state habeas corpus proceedings in both the trial and appellate courts.
The Law Enforcement and Special Prosecutions Division handles criminal prosecutions in matters involving criminal acts by elected state judicial officials, Securities Act violations, and violations of the state's Clean Water Act and also assists local district attorneys in similar prosecutions. The division represents the state's interests in federal habeas corpus and civil forfeiture proceedings and defends state agencies, including the Department of Safety, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and the Alcoholic Beverage Commission, in suits for declaratory and injunctive relief.
The Medicaid Fraud and Integrity Division works with TennCare, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and the Office of Inspector General in combating medical provider fraud in the TennCare/Medicaid program.
The Public Interest Division carries out the office's statutory duty to oversee the operation of nonprofit entities on behalf of Tennesseans. The division handles charitable oversight and charitable solicitations as well as issues involving open meetings, public records, and campaigns and elections.
The Tobacco Enforcement Division enforces the provisions of the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement and handles other tobacco-related matters.