LEGAL TERMINOLOGY: venue mandamus | mandatory venue | permissive venue | motion to transfer venue | venue challenge |
waiver of venue | venue vs. jurisdiction | timeliness of venue challenge | waiver of objection to venue | venue rules |
forum
selection clauses | mandamus granted | denied to enforce venue rule | contracted for venue | venue in family law cases | court of
continuing jurisdiction | mandatory joinder of SAPCR to divorce suit |  

In Re Estate of Ortiz-Vasquez (pdf) (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Jan. 21, 2010)(Brown)
(probate venue mandamus denied)
MOTION OR WRIT DENIED: Opinion by Justice Brown     
14-08-01035-CV  In Re Estate of Jose Francisco Ortiz-Vasquez. a/k/a Jose F. Ortiz, a/k/a Jose Francisco Ortiz,
a/k/a Francisco Ortiz, Deceased
Appeal from Probate Court No 2 of Harris County  

Poock v. Washington Mutual Bank [WaMu] (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Jul. 16, 2009)(Jennings)
(
venue caselaw, mandatory venue, transfer required)
REVERSE TC JUDGMENT AND REMAND CASE TO TC FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS:
Opinion by
Justice Jennings    
Before Justices Jennings, Keyes and Higley  
01-08-00415-CV  Steven Poock & David Edwards v. Washington Mutual Bank  
Appeal from 270th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge:
Hon. Brent Gamble

Garza v. Reed (Tex. App. - Houston [14th Dist.] Jul. 7, 2009)(Hudson) (DTPA claim against insurer of
complained-of business fails on summary judgment; misrepresentation as to insurance coverage of buy-back
guarantee)(
no-evidence summary judgment affirmed) (motion to transfer venue for convenience)    
AFFIRMED: Opinion by
Justice Hudson     
Before Chief Justice Hedges, Justices Hudson and Frost   
14-08-00211-CV Joe M Garza, Pay Phone Owners Legal Fund, and Ernest R. Bustos v. Jack P. Reed and
Houston Surplus Lines, Inc.    
Appeal from 434th Judicial District Court of Fort Bend County

In re Fort Bend County (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Feb 3, 2009)(Brown)
(
venue mandamus)
MOTION OR WRIT GRANTED: Opinion by Justice Brown  
Before Chief Justice Hedges, Justices Guzman and Brown
14-08-00912-CV        In Re Fort Bend County
Appeal from 334th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge: Sharon McCally  
Concurring Opinion by Justice Guzman  

Kelly v. American Interstate Insurance Co. (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Nov. 25, 2008)(Brown)
(venue, MTV,
exhaustion of administrative remedies, plea to the jurisdiction, workers comp, compensable
injury, benefits denial, preauthorization)
AFFIRMED: Opinion by
Justice Jeff Brown  
Before Justices Brock Yates, Guzman and Brown
14-07-00083-CV  Jimmy J. Kelly v. American Interstate Insurance Co., Hammerman & Gainer, Inc., and Sheryl
Butman--Appeal from 334th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge:
Sharon McCally
In his first issue on appeal, Kelly argues that he was not given sufficient notice of the hearing on appellees'
separate motions to transfer venue.  Kelly asserts that the trial court's order was granted and conveyed to him
only 29 days before the scheduled date of the hearing.  As a result, he contends not only was he denied the
required 45 days' notice of the hearing, but it was impossible for him to timely file a response in opposition to
appellees' motions at least 30 days before the hearing.  See Tex. R. Civ. P. 87(1).

Inconsistent Statements on forum and jurisdiction in documents render forum selection
ambiguous. Trial court properly denied motion to dismiss. Mandamus denied.
In re Sterling Chemicals, Inc. (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Aug. 7, 2008)(Hedges)
(forum selection clause ambiguous, not enforced, mandamus denial)
MOTION OR WRIT DENIED: Opinion by Chief Justice Hedges  
Before Chief Justice Hedges, Justices Hudson and Boyce
14-08-00280-CV In Re: Sterling Chemicals, Inc., Richard Crump, John Beaver, Resurgence Asset
Management, LLC, Byron Haney and Paul Rostek
Appeal from 212th District Court of Galveston County
Trial Court
Judge: Hon. Susan Elizabeth Criss
Given the ambiguity in the forum-selection clause, we cannot say that the trial court abused its discretion by
denying relators' motions to dismiss.  When a contract is ambiguous, the parties' intent is a determination left to
the exclusive province of the fact finder.  Coker, 650 S.W.2d at 395.  We may not address disputed fact issues
in an original mandamus proceeding. ...Given the ambiguity in the forum-selection clause, we cannot say that
the trial court abused its discretion by denying relators' motions to dismiss.  When a contract is ambiguous, the
parties' intent is a determination left to the exclusive province of the fact finder.  Coker, 650 S.W.2d at 395.  We
may not address disputed fact issues in an original mandamus proceeding.  Davenport v. Garcia, 834 S.W.2d
4, 24 (Tex. 1992) (orig. proceeding); Brady v. Fourteenth Court of Appeals, 795 S.W.2d 712, 714 (Tex. 1990)
(orig. proceeding) (op. on reh'g).

Venue ruling in JP Court reviewed de novo on appeal in county court  
Cramer v. State Farm Mutual Auto Ins. Co. (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Nov. 6, 2008)(Jennings)
(
denial of motion to transfer venue re determined de novo by county court on appeal)(appeals from justice
court to county court)
REVERSE TC JUDGMENT AND REMAND CASE TO TC FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS:
Opinion by
Justice Jennings  
Before Justices Jennings, Hanks and Bland)
01-08-00270-CV  Daniel Cramer and Saejin Cramer v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company
Appeal from County Court at Law No 1 of McLennan County
Trial Court Judge: Hon. Mike Freeman

Texas Supreme Court Grants Mandamus Relief to enforce Forum Selection Clause in contract  
In re Lyon Financial Services, Inc., No. 07-0486 (Tex. June 20, 2008)(per curiam) (orig. proc.) (mandamus,
forum selection clause, motion to dismiss improperly denied, forum selection clause enforced)

In re Tracey Wade Mock (Tex.App. - Houston [1st Dist.] June 11, 2008)(per curiam denial of venue mandamus)
DENY PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS: Per Curiam  
Before Chief Justice Radack, Justices Keyes and Higley
01-08-00360-CV        In re Tracey Wade Mock
Appeal from 328th District Court of Fort Bend County
Trial Court Judge: Hon. Ronald Pope

Texas Supreme Court grants mandamus relief to keep case in court to which it was transferred,
says  Plaintiff may not nonsuit and refile in a different county is not permissible
In re Team Rocket,
LP, No. 06-0414 (Tex. May 23, 3008)(Opinion by Justice Green)(mandamus granted) (mandamus granted to
enforce first
transfer of venue, nonsuit and refiling in third county disapproved) Justice Wainwright delivered a
concurring opinion,

Satterwhite Aviation Service v. International Profit Associates, Inc. (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Jan. 31,
2008)(Hanks) (venue law, forum selection clause)
AFFIRM TC JUDGMENT: Opinion by Justice Hanks
Before Justices Nuchia, Hanks and Higley)
01-07-00053-CV Satterwhite Aviation Service v. International Profit Associates, Inc.
Appeal from 190th District Court of Harris County (
Judge Jennifer Elrod)

Cantu v. Grossman (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Jan. 29, 2008)(Seymore)
(venue law,
foreign judgment, MTV)
REVERSED AND REMANDED: Opinion by Justice Seymore
Before Justices Frost, Seymore and Guzman
14-06-00078-CV Mark A. Cantu v. Howard S. Grossman, P.A.
Appeal from 215th District Court of Harris County
Dissenting Opinion by Justice Frost  

Scott v. Wichita County (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Oct. 18, 2007)(Hanks)(venue, prisoner suit)
AFFIRM TC JUDGMENT: Opinion by Justice Hanks
Before Justices Taft, Hanks and Higley
01-06-00527-CV Michael Scott v. Wichita County and Whichita County Distric Attorney Barry Macha--Appeal
from 400th District Court of Ft. Bend County (Hon. Clifford J. Vacek)

Texas Supreme Court Grants Mandamus Relief to Enforce Mandatory Venue Provisions
In Re Texas Department of Transportation (TxDoT), No. 06-0289 (Tex. Mar. 9, 2007)(per curiam)(mandamus
granted to enforce mandatory venue provision of
TTCA)
In Re Gillespie County, No. 06-00052 (Tex. Mar. 9, 2007)(per curiam)(mandamus granted to enforce
mandatory venue under
TTCA) consolidated with In Re Texas Department of Transportation, No. 06-0289
(Tex. Mar. 9, 2007)

In re Applied Chemical Magnesias Corp., No. 04-1119 (Tex. Aug. 31, 2006)(Justice Paul W. Green
(venue, mandatory venue, permissive venue, MTV, real estate suits)

Scott v. Farrar (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] May 31, 2007)(Keyes)
(venue, pro se prisoner IFP suit, venue)
AFFIRM TC JUDGMENT: Opinion by Justice Keyes
Before Justices Nuchia, Keyes and Higley
01-06-00395-CV
Michael Scott v. Joseph Farrar, Darryl Glenn and S. Whatley
Appeal from 400th District Court of Ft. Bend County (Hon Clifford J. Vacek)
In his sole issue on appeal, appellant argues that the trial court's venue was not a proper venue for appellant to have brought
suit, which caused the trial court to render a void order. Appellant makes no complaint about the merits of the trial court's order of
dismissal.

"[A]n action that accrued while the plaintiff was housed in a facility operated by or under contract with the Texas Department of
Criminal Justice shall be brought in the county in which the facility is located." Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. § 15.019(a).
Filing a lawsuit in a county of improper venue is not a jurisdictional defect that would render a trial court's actions void. See
Gordon v. Jones, 196 S.W.3d 376, 383 (Tex. App.--Houston [1st Dist.] 2006, no pet.) ("Venue pertains solely to where a suit may
be brought and is a different question from whether the court has 'jurisdiction of the property or thing in controversy.'").
"Subject-matter jurisdiction refers to the court's power to hear a particular type of suit." Id. at 382. In contrast, venue "refers to the
propriety of prosecuting, in a particular form, a suit on a given subject matter with specific parties, over which the forum must,
necessarily, have subject-matter jurisdiction." Id. at 383. "Venue may and generally does refer to a particular county. . . ." Id.
"Venue pertains solely to where a suit may be brought and is a different question from whether the court has jurisdiction of the
property or thing in controversy." Id. (citations and internal quotations omitted). "Moreover, unlike subject-matter jurisdiction,
which may be challenged at any time, venue may be waived if not challenged in due order and on a timely basis." Id. (citing
former Tex. R. Civ. P. 86(1)) (internal citation omitted). "Because it may be waived, venue is not 'jurisdictional.'" Id.

Appellant contends that because the William P. Clements unit, where appellant is incarcerated, is in Potter County, he should
have filed his lawsuit there, rather than Fort Bend County, pursuant to section 15.019(a) of the Texas Civil Practice and
Remedies Code. See Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code Ann. § 15.019(a). We have previously held that filing suit in a different county,
instead of in the venue mandated by section 15.019, neither deprives the trial court of subject matter jurisdiction nor renders the
trial court's order of dismissal void. (5) See Scott v. Gallagher, 209 S.W.3d 262, 264-65 (Tex. App.--Houston [1st Dist.] 2006, no
pet.); see also In re Johnson, 12-07-00032-CV, 2007 WL 259255, at *1 (Tex. App.--Tyler Jan. 31, 2007, orig. proceeding) (mem.
op) ("Filing a lawsuit in a county of improper venue is not a jurisdictional defect that would render a trial court's actions void.").
Accordingly, we hold that the trial court did not lack jurisdiction and, thus, its order of dismissal is not void.

We overrule appellant's sole issue on appeal.

First Court of Appeals Grants Mandamus to Enforce Mandatory Transfer of Venue
In re Wilson (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Apr. 26, 2007)(Hanks)(family court had nondiscretionary duty to
transfer case pursuant to mandatory venue statute in Family Code; denial of motion to transfer venue was
error)(
mandamus, venue, family law, SAPCR, modification)

Venue was not timely challenged, dismissal order reversed
Liu v CiCi Enterprises LP (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] Jan. 9, 2007)(Opinion by Justice Guzman)

Scott v. Wichita County (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Oct. 18, 2007)(Hanks)(venue, prisoner suit)
Forum and Venue Case Law from the Houston Courts of Appeals
and from the Texas Supreme Court
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