By:  Wentworth                                        S.B. No. 1005
         Line and page numbers may not match official copy.
         Bill not drafted by TLC or Senate E&E.
                                A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
                                       AN ACT
 1-1     relating to the jurisdiction of a statutory probate court in
 1-2     certain matters relating to decedents' estates.
 1-4           SECTION 1.  Section 5A(b), Texas Probate Code, is amended to
 1-5     read as follows:
 1-6           (b)  In proceedings in the statutory probate courts and
 1-7     districts courts, the phrases "appertaining to estates" and
 1-8     "incident to an estate" in this Code include the probate of wills,
 1-9     the issuance of letters testamentary and of administration, and the
1-10     determination of heirship, and also include, but are not limited
1-11     to, all claims by or against an estate, all actions for trial of
1-12     title to land and for the enforcement of liens thereon, all actions
1-13     for trial of the right of property, all actions to construe wills,
1-14     the interpretation and administration of testamentary trusts and
1-15     the applying of constructive trusts, and generally all matters
1-16     relating to the settlement, partition, and distribution of estates
1-17     of deceased persons.  All statutory probate courts may, in the
1-18     exercise of their jurisdiction, notwithstanding any other
1-19     provisions of this Code, hear all suits, actions, and applications
1-20     filed against or on behalf of any heirship proceeding or decedent's
1-21     estate, including estates administered by an independent executor;
1-22     all such suits, actions, and applications are appertaining to and
 2-1     incident to an estate [for the purposes of this section].  This
 2-2     subsection shall be construed in conjunction with and in harmony
 2-3     with Section 145 and all other sections of this Code dealing with
 2-4     independent executors, but shall not be construed so as to increase
 2-5     permissible judicial control over independent executors.  All
 2-6     statutory probate courts shall have the same powers over
 2-7     independent executors that are exercisable by the district courts.
 2-8     In situations where the jurisdiction of a statutory probate court
 2-9     is concurrent with that of a district court, any cause of action
2-10     appertaining to estates or incident to an estate shall be brought
2-11     in a statutory probate court rather than in the district court.
2-12           SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect September 1, 1999.