S.B. No. 32
1-1 relating to venue for civil actions.
1-2 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
1-3 SECTION 1. Subchapter A, Chapter 15, Civil Practice and
1-4 Remedies Code, is amended to read as follows:
1-5 SUBCHAPTER A. DEFINITIONS; GENERAL RULES <
1-6 Sec. 15.001. DEFINITIONS. In this chapter:
1-7 (a) "Principal office" means a principal office of the
1-8 corporation, unincorporated association, or partnership in this
1-9 state in which the decision makers for the organization within this
1-10 state conduct the daily affairs of the organization. The mere
1-11 presence of an agency or representative does not establish a
1-12 principal office.
1-13 (b) "Proper venue" means:
1-14 (1) the venue required by the mandatory provisions of
1-15 Subchapter B or another statute prescribing mandatory venue; or
1-16 (2) if Subdivision (1) does not apply, the venue
1-17 provided by this subchapter or Subchapter C.
1-18 Sec. 15.002. VENUE: GENERAL RULE. (a) Except as otherwise
1-19 provided by this subchapter or Subchapter B or C, all lawsuits
1-20 shall be brought:
1-21 (1) in the county in which all or a substantial part
1-22 of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred;
1-23 (2) < cause of action accrued or> in the county of
1-24 defendant's residence at the time the cause of action accrued if
2-1 defendant is a natural person;
2-2 (3) in the county of the defendant's principal office
2-3 in this state, if the defendant is not a natural person; or
2-4 (4) if Subdivisions (1), (2), and (3) do not apply, in
2-5 the county in which the plaintiff resided at the time of the
2-6 accrual of the cause of action.
2-7 (b) For the convenience of the parties and witnesses and in
2-8 the interest of justice, a court may transfer an action from a
2-9 county of proper venue under this subchapter or Subchapter C to any
2-10 other county of proper venue on motion of a defendant filed and
2-11 served concurrently with or before the filing of the answer, where
2-12 the court finds:
2-13 (1) maintenance of the action in the county of suit
2-14 would work an injustice to the movant considering the movant's
2-15 economic and personal hardship;
2-16 (2) the balance of interests of all the parties
2-17 predominates in favor of the action being brought in the other
2-18 county; and
2-19 (3) the transfer of the action would not work an
2-20 injustice to any other party.
2-21 (c) A court's ruling or decision to grant or deny a
2-22 transfer under Subsection (b) is not grounds for appeal or mandamus
2-23 and is not reversible error.
2-24 Sec. 15.003. MULTIPLE PLAINTIFFS AND INTERVENING PLAINTIFFS.
2-25 (a) In a suit where more than one plaintiff is joined each
2-26 plaintiff must, independently of any other plaintiff, establish
2-27 proper venue. Any person who is unable to establish proper venue
3-1 may not join or maintain venue for the suit as a plaintiff unless
3-2 the person, independently of any other plaintiff, establishes that:
3-3 (1) joinder or intervention in the suit is proper
3-4 under the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure;
3-5 (2) maintaining venue in the county of suit does not
3-6 unfairly prejudice another party to the suit;
3-7 (3) there is an essential need to have the person's
3-8 claim tried in the county in which the suit is pending; and
3-9 (4) the county in which the suit is pending is a fair
3-10 and convenient venue for the person seeking to join in or maintain
3-11 venue for the suit and the persons against whom the suit is
3-13 (b) A person may not intervene or join in a pending suit as
3-14 a plaintiff unless the person, independently of any other
3-16 (1) establishes proper venue for the county in which
3-17 the suit is pending; or
3-18 (2) satisfies the requirements of Subdivisions (1)
3-19 through (4) of Subsection (a).
3-20 (c) Any person seeking intervention or joinder, who is
3-21 unable to independently establish proper venue, or a party opposing
3-22 intervention or joinder of such a person may contest the decision
3-23 of the trial court allowing or denying intervention or joinder by
3-24 taking an interlocutory appeal to the court of appeals district in
3-25 which the trial court is located under the procedures established
3-26 for interlocutory appeals. The appeal must be perfected not later
3-27 than the 20th day after the date the trial court signs the order
4-1 denying or allowing the intervention or joinder. The court of
4-2 appeals shall:
4-3 (1) determine whether the joinder or intervention is
4-4 proper based on an independent determination from the record and
4-5 not under either an abuse of discretion or substantial evidence
4-6 standard; and
4-7 (2) render its decision not later than the 120th day
4-8 after the date the appeal is perfected by the complaining party.
4-9 Sec. 15.004. MANDATORY VENUE PROVISION GOVERNS MULTIPLE
4-10 CLAIMS. In a suit in which a plaintiff properly joins two or more
4-11 claims or causes of action arising from the same transaction,
4-12 occurrence, or series of transactions or occurrences, and one of
4-13 the claims or causes of action is governed by the mandatory venue
4-14 provisions of Subchapter B, the suit shall be brought in the county
4-15 required by the mandatory venue provision.
4-16 Sec. 15.005. MULTIPLE DEFENDANTS. In a suit in which the
4-17 plaintiff has established proper venue against a defendant, the
4-18 court also has venue of all the defendants in all claims or actions
4-19 arising out of the same transaction, occurrence, or series of
4-20 transactions or occurrences.
4-21 Sec. 15.006. VENUE DETERMINED BY FACTS EXISTING AT THE TIME
4-22 OF ACCRUAL. A court shall determine the venue of a suit based on
4-23 the facts existing at the time the cause of action that is the
4-24 basis of the suit accrued.
4-25 Sec. 15.007. CONFLICT WITH CERTAIN PROVISIONS.
4-26 Notwithstanding Sections 15.004, 15.005, and 15.031, to the extent
4-27 that venue under this chapter for a suit by or against an executor,
5-1 administrator, or guardian as such, for personal injury, death, or
5-2 property damage conflicts with venue provisions under the Texas
5-3 Probate Code, this chapter controls.
5-4 SECTION 2. Subchapter B, Chapter 15, Civil Practice and
5-5 Remedies Code, is amended by amending Section 15.011 and by adding
5-6 Sections 15.0115 and 15.018 to read as follows:
5-7 Sec. 15.011. LAND. Actions for recovery of real property or
5-8 an estate or interest in real property, for partition of real
5-9 property, to remove encumbrances from the title to real property,
5-10 for recovery of damages to real property, or to quiet title to real
5-11 property shall be brought in the county in which all or a part of
5-12 the property is located.
5-13 Sec. 15.0115. LANDLORD-TENANT. (a) Except as provided by
5-14 another statute prescribing mandatory venue, a suit between a
5-15 landlord and a tenant arising under a lease shall be brought in the
5-16 county in which all or a part of the real property is located.
5-17 (b) In this section, "lease" means any written or oral
5-18 agreement between a landlord and a tenant that establishes or
5-19 modifies the terms, conditions, or other provisions relating to the
5-20 use and occupancy of the real property that is the subject of the
5-22 Sec. 15.018. FEDERAL EMPLOYERS' LIABILITY ACT AND JONES ACT.
5-23 (a) This section only applies to suits brought under the federal
5-24 Employers' Liability Act (45 U.S.C. Section 51 et seq.) or the
5-25 Jones Act (46 U.S.C. Section 688).
5-26 (b) All suits brought under the federal Employers' Liability
5-27 Act or the Jones Act shall be brought:
6-1 (1) in the county in which all or a substantial part
6-2 of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred;
6-3 (2) in the county where the defendant's principal
6-4 office in this state is located; or
6-5 (3) in the county where the plaintiff resided at the
6-6 time the cause of action accrued.
6-7 SECTION 3. Sections 15.032 and 15.033, Civil Practice and
6-8 Remedies Code, are amended to read as follows:
6-9 Sec. 15.032. INSURANCE. Suit against fire, marine, or
6-10 inland insurance companies may also be commenced in any county in
6-11 which the insured property was situated. A suit on a policy may be
6-12 brought against any life insurance company, or accident insurance
6-13 company, or life and accident, or health and accident, or life,
6-14 health, and accident insurance company in the county in which the
6-15 company's principal office in this state < home office of the
6-16 company> is located or in the county in which the loss has occurred
6-17 or in which the policyholder or beneficiary instituting the suit
6-18 resided at the time the cause of action accrued < resides>.
6-19 Sec. 15.033. BREACH OF WARRANTY BY MANUFACTURER. A suit for
6-20 breach of warranty by a manufacturer of consumer goods may be
6-21 brought in any county in which all or a substantial part of the
6-22 events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred < cause of
6-23 action accrued>, in the < any> county in which the manufacturer has
6-24 its < may have an agency or representative, in the county in which
6-25 the> principal office in this state < of the company may be
6-26 situated>, or in the county in which the plaintiff resided at the
6-27 time the cause of action accrued < or plaintiffs reside>.
7-1 SECTION 4. Section 15.062, Civil Practice and Remedies Code,
7-2 is amended to read as follows:
7-3 Sec. 15.062. COUNTERCLAIMS, CROSS CLAIMS, AND THIRD-PARTY
7-4 CLAIMS. (a) Venue of the main action shall establish venue of a
7-5 counterclaim, cross claim, or third-party claim properly joined
7-6 under the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure or any applicable statute.
7-7 (b) If an original defendant properly joins a third-party
7-8 defendant, venue shall be proper for a claim arising out of the
7-9 same transaction, occurrence, or series of transactions or
7-10 occurrences by the plaintiff against the third-party defendant if
7-11 the claim arises out of the subject matter of the plaintiff's claim
7-12 against the original defendant.
7-13 SECTION 5. Subchapter D, Chapter 15, Civil Practice and
7-14 Remedies Code, is amended by adding Sections 15.0641 and 15.0642 to
7-15 read as follows:
7-16 Sec. 15.0641. VENUE RIGHTS OF MULTIPLE DEFENDANTS. In a
7-17 suit in which two or more defendants are joined, any action or
7-18 omission by one defendant in relation to venue, including a waiver
7-19 of venue by one defendant, does not operate to impair or diminish
7-20 the right of any other defendant to properly challenge venue.
7-21 Sec. 15.0642. MANDAMUS. A party may apply for a writ of
7-22 mandamus with an appellate court to enforce the mandatory venue
7-23 provisions of this chapter. An application for the writ of
7-24 mandamus must be filed before the later of:
7-25 (1) the 90th day before the date the trial starts; or
7-26 (2) the 10th day after the date the party receives
7-27 notice of the trial setting.
8-1 SECTION 6. Subchapter D, Chapter 15, Civil Practice and
8-2 Remedies Code, is amended by adding Section 15.066 to read as
8-4 Sec. 15.066. CONFLICT WITH RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE.
8-5 Subject to Section 22.004, Government Code, to the extent that this
8-6 chapter conflicts with the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure, this
8-7 chapter controls.
8-8 SECTION 7. Section 17.56, Business & Commerce Code, is
8-9 amended to read as follows:
8-10 Sec. 17.56. VENUE. Except as provided by Article 5.06-1(8),
8-11 Insurance Code, an < An> action brought which alleges a claim to
8-12 relief under Section 17.50 of this subchapter shall be brought as
8-13 provided by Chapter 15, Civil Practice and Remedies Code < may be
8-14 commenced in the county in which the person against whom the suit
8-15 is brought resides, has his principal place of business, or has a
8-16 fixed and established place of business at the time the suit is
8-17 brought or in the county in which the alleged act or practice
8-18 occurred or in a county in which the defendant or an authorized
8-19 agent of the defendant solicited the transaction made the subject
8-20 of the action at bar>.
8-21 SECTION 8. Article 5.06-1, Insurance Code, is amended by
8-22 adding Section (8) to read as follows:
8-23 (8) Notwithstanding Section 15.032, Civil Practice and
8-24 Remedies Code, an action against an insurer in relation to the
8-25 coverage provided under this article, including an action to
8-26 enforce that coverage, may be brought only:
8-27 (a) in the county in which the policyholder or
9-1 beneficiary instituting the suit resided at the time of the
9-2 accident; or
9-3 (b) in the county in which the accident involving the
9-4 uninsured or underinsured motor vehicle occurred.
9-5 SECTION 9. Section 92.007, Property Code, is amended to read
9-6 as follows:
9-7 Sec. 92.007. VENUE. Venue for an action under this chapter
9-8 is governed by Section 15.0115, Civil Practice and Remedies Code
9-9 < in the county in which the premises are located>.
9-10 SECTION 10. Sections 15.036, 15.037, 15.040, and 15.061,
9-11 Civil Practice and Remedies Code, are repealed.
9-12 SECTION 11. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (b) of
9-13 this section, this Act applies only to a suit commenced on or after
9-14 September 1, 1995. A suit commenced before September 1, 1995, is
9-15 governed by the law applicable to the suit immediately before the
9-16 effective date of this Act, and that law is continued in effect for
9-17 that purpose.
9-18 (b) Venue under Section 15.018, Civil Practice and Remedies
9-19 Code, as added by this Act, applies only to a suit commenced on or
9-20 after January 1, 1996. Venue under that section for a suit
9-21 commenced before January 1, 1996, is governed by the law applicable
9-22 to the suit immediately before the effective date of this Act, and
9-23 that law is continued in effect for that purpose.
9-24 SECTION 12. The importance of this legislation and the
9-25 crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an
9-26 emergency and an imperative public necessity that the
9-27 constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several
10-1 days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,
10-2 and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its
10-3 passage, and it is so enacted.