Jeffrey W. Rufolo


Jeffrey W. Rufolo grew up in New Jersey and originally came to Chattanooga in 1983 to attend the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga on a wrestling scholarship. He liked the area so much he decided to stay.

Mr. Rufolo has spent his entire thirty-two-year legal career at Summers, Rufolo & Rodgers, formerly known as Summers & Wyatt, representing real people who were injured due to the fault of others.  Mr. Rufolo’s primary focus is representing people involved in motor vehicle collisions, slip and falls, other types of premises liability cases and in other situations where an individual is injured through no fault of their own.  Although in 2014 the Tennessee legislature severely limited the rights of workers injured on the job, Mr. Rufolo still handles workers’ compensation cases if he believes he can obtain a more favorable result than if the injured worker was unrepresented.

Mr. Rufolo has tried over seventy-five cases to verdict, both jury and non-jury alike.  He has argued on behalf of his clients in Circuit, Chancery, and Federal Court, the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, and in the Court of Appeals and Tennessee Supreme Court.  Mr. Rufolo believes that although most cases ultimately settle, the only way to achieve a favorable settlement for his client is to prepare the case as if it were to be tried.  Only when the insurance company realizes the case will go to trial does it settle for a fair amount.

Mr. Rufolo is married to Laura Beth, who is also an attorney. Together they have one daughter. He is an active member of his church, in the community, and has served as a high school wrestling referee for twenty-five years, a youth soccer coach, on the alumni counsel of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and the Chattanooga Takedown Club.


  • University of Tennessee College of Law, Knoxville, Tennessee
    • J.D. – 1991
  • University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN
    • B.S. – 1988

Professional Associations

  • American Association for Justice
  • Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association, previously served on Board of Governors
  • Chattanooga Trial Lawyers Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Tennessee Bar Association
  • Chattanooga Bar Association

Bar Admissions

  • Tennessee, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Tennessee, 1992


  • Recognized as on of the Best Lawyers in America for Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs and Workers’ Compensation Law – Claimants (2016, 2017, 2018)

Representative Cases

  • Clifton v. Komatsu American Mfg. Corp., 38 S.W.3d 550, 2001, Tennessee
  • Walker v. Wheland Foundry, 1999 W.L. 994372, 1999, Tennessee
  • Cannon v. City of Chattanooga, 1999 W.L. 544640, 1999, Tenn. Ct. App.
  • Maytag Cooking Products v. Elliott, 1997 W.L. 459127, 1997, Tennessee
  • Freeman v. CPQ Colorchome, Inc., 1997 W.L. 193927, 1997, Tennessee
  • Hale v. ABB Combustion, 1996 W.L. 99298, 1996, Tennessee
  • Tinker v. Wheland Foundry, 1996 W.L. 8260, 1996, Tennessee
  • Higgenbottom v. Continental Casualty Co., 1994 W.L. 312871, 1994, Tennessee Ct. App.
  • Rose v. South Central Bell, 1993 W.L. 835046, 1993, Tennessee
  • Brown v. Hamilton County, 126 S.W.3d 43 2003 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2003)
  • Wilder v. Monroe County Government, et al
  • Robert Goodman v. Bellsouth Telecommunications, LLC, et al
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