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MANDAMUS STANDARD  

Mandamus Principles

  To be entitled to mandamus relief, a relator must meet two requirements.  First, the relator must show
that the trial court clearly abused its discretion.  In re Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 148 S.W.3d 124, 135
(Tex. 2004) (orig. proceeding).  Second, the relator must demonstrate it has no adequate remedy by
appeal.  Id. at 136.
  A trial court abuses its discretion if it reaches a decision so arbitrary and unreasonable as to constitute a
clear and prejudicial error of law.  In re Cerberus Capital Mgmt., L.P., 164 S.W.3d 379, 382 (Tex. 2005)
(orig. proceeding).  When reviewing the trial court’s decision for an abuse of discretion, we may not
substitute our judgment for that of the trial court with respect to resolution of factual issues or matters
committed to the trial court’s discretion.  See Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 839 (Tex. 1992); see also
Downer v. Aquamarine Operators, Inc., 701 S.W.2d 238, 242 (Tex. 1985).  
  Review of the trial court’s determination of the legal principles controlling its ruling is much less
deferential.  See Walker, 827 S.W.2d at 840.  A trial court has no discretion in determining what the law is
or applying the law to the facts, even when the law is unsettled.  Prudential, 148 S.W.3d at 135.  A clear
failure by the trial court to analyze or apply the law correctly will constitute an abuse of discretion.  Walker,
827 S.W.2d at 840.
  Absent extraordinary circumstances, mandamus will not issue unless the relator lacks an adequate
remedy by appeal.  In re Van Waters & Rogers, Inc., 145 S.W.3d 203, 210–11 (Tex. 2004) (orig.
proceeding).  Whether a clear abuse of discretion can be adequately remedied by appeal depends on a
careful analysis of costs and benefits of interlocutory review.  In re McAllen Med. Ctr., Inc., 275 S.W.3d
458, 464 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding).  Because it depends heavily on circumstances, such a cost-
benefit analysis must be guided by principles rather than by simple rules that treat cases as categories.  
See id.
    In addition, we must consider whether mandamus will spare the litigants and the public “the time and
money utterly wasted enduring eventual reversal of improperly conducted proceedings.”  In re Team
Rocket, L.P., 256 S.W.3d 257, 262 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding), quoting Prudential, 148 S.W.3d at 136.

Mandamus is an extraordinary remedy, available only when a trial court clearly
abuses its discretion and there is no adequate remedy by appeal.
  In re Tex. Dep’t of
Fam. & Prot. Servs., 273 S.W.3d 637, 643 (Tex. 2009);  In re Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148 S.W.3d 124,
135-36 (Tex. 2004).   A trial court commits a clear abuse of discretion when its action is “so arbitrary and
unreasonable as to amount to a clear and prejudicial error of law.” In re CSX Corp., 124 S.W.3d 149, 151
(Tex. 2003) (quoting CSR Ltd. v. Link, 925 S.W.2d 591, 596 (Tex. 1996)).  With respect to factual issues,
matters are committed to the trial court’s discretion, and the reviewing court may not substitute its
judgment for that of the trial court.  In re Parnham, 263 S.W.3d 97, 101 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.]
2006, orig. proceeding) (citing Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 839 (Tex. 1992)).  The relator must
establish that the trial court reasonably could have reached only one decision.  Id.  “An appellate remedy
is ‘adequate’ when any benefits to mandamus review are outweighed by the detriments.” In re Prudential,
148 S.W.3d at 136.
Although mandamus is not an equitable remedy, its issuance is largely controlled by
principles of equity.
 In re Roxsane R., 249 S.W.3d 764, 771 (Tex. App.—Fort Worth 2008, orig.
proceeding) (citing In re Users Sys. Servs., Inc., 22 S.W.3d 331, 337 (Tex. 1999); Rivercenter Assocs. v.
Rivera, 858 S.W.2d 366, 367 (Tex. 1993)).  One of these equitable principles is that “equity aids the
diligent and not those who slumber on their rights.” Id. (citing Rivercenter Assocs., 858 S.W.2d at 367).  
Thus, mandamus relief may be denied when a party delays asserting its rights without justifiable
explanation.  Id. (citing Rivercenter Assocs., 858 S.W.2d at 367).  
In Re Northrop (Tex.App.- Houston [1st
Dist.] Oct. 15, 2009)(Hanks)
(
SAPCR petition in intervention in DFPS/CPS suit to terminate parental rights, timeliness issue)
DENY PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS: Opinion by
Justice Hanks   
Before Justices Keyes, Alcala and Hanks    
01-09-00814-CV  In Re David Arnold Northrop    
Appeal from
257th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge: Hon. Judy Warne

UNDER WHAT CIRCUMSTANCE, WHEN IS MANDAMUS RELIEF AVAILABLE?

To be entitled to the extraordinary relief of a writ of mandamus, the relator generally must show that the
trial court clearly abused its discretion and he has no adequate remedy by appeal.  In re Team Rocket, L.
P., 256 S.W.3d 257, 259 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding).  A trial court clearly abuses its discretion if it
reaches a decision so arbitrary and unreasonable as to amount to a clear and prejudicial error of law.  
Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 839 (Tex. 1992) (orig. proceeding).  When a challenged order is void
for lack of jurisdiction, the relator is not required to establish that he has no adequate remedy by appeal.  
In re S.W. Bell Tel. Co., 35 S.W.3d 602, 605 (Tex. 2000) (per curiam).  Section 6.502 of the Texas Family
Code provides for temporary support while a suit for dissolution of a marriage is pending.  Tex. Fam. Code
Ann. §6.502(a)(2) (Vernon 2006).  Generally, a person who willfully disobeys a valid court order is guilty of
contempt and subject to imprisonment for a prescribed period until he complies with the order.  Ex parte
Hall, 854 S.W.2d 656, 658 (Tex. 1993) (orig. proceeding).  An order requiring temporary support payments
is enforceable by contempt.  Id.  
In Re Small, NO. 14-08-01075-CV (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] May 7,
2009)(
Anderson)
(
civil contempt is void in violation of the bankruptcy stay)

Standard of Review | Mandamus criteria | Requisites for Mandamus Relief

To be entitled to the extraordinary relief of a writ of mandamus, a relator must show that the trial court
clearly abused its discretion and left him no adequate remedy by appeal.  In re Team Rocket, L.P., 256 S.
W.3d 257, 259 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding).  A trial court abuses its discretion if it reaches a decision
that is so arbitrary and unreasonable as to constitute a clear and prejudicial error of law, or if it clearly fails
to correctly analyze or apply the law.  In re Cerberus Capital Mgmt., L.P., 164 S.W.3d 379, 382 (Tex. 2005)
(orig. proceeding) (per curiam); Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 839 (Tex. 1992) (orig. proceeding).  
To determine if a party has an adequate remedy by appeal, we ask whether “any benefits to mandamus
review are outweighed by the detriments.”  In re Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148 S.W.3d 124, 136 (Tex.
2004) (orig. proceeding).  An appeal is an inadequate remedy when a party stands to lose a substantial
right.  Walker, 827 S.W.2d at 842.

[4]  An appeal from a trial court’s discovery order is not adequate if (1) the appellate court would not be
able to cure the trial court’s error on appeal; (2) the party’s ability to present a viable claim or defense is
vitiated or severely compromised; or (3) missing discovery cannot be made a part of the appellate record.  
In re Ford Motor Co., 988 S.W.2d 714, 721 (Tex. 1998) (orig. proceeding) (citing Walker, 827 S.W.2d at
843).
In Re Lesikar,NO. 14-09-00016-CV (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] May 7, 2009)(Guzman)(scope of
remand, discovery mandamus denied)(segregation of attorney's fees required, no fees for non-suited
claims) (jury trial improperly denied)

MANDAMUS STANDARD. To be entitled to the extraordinary relief of a writ of mandamus, relator must
show that the trial court clearly abused its discretion and she has no adequate remedy by appeal.  In re
Team Rocket, L.P., 256 S.W.3d 257, 259 (Tex. 2008) (orig. proceeding).  On February 2, 2009, the trial
court signed and entered a final judgment in the underlying case.  See Lehmann v. Har-Con Corp., 39 S.W.
3d 191 (Tex. 2001).  Relator, therefore, has an adequate remedy by appeal.  Moreover, relator’s petition
does not comply with the Texas Rules of Appellate Procedure.  See Tex. R. App. P. 52.3(j), 52.3(k)(1)(A),
and 52.7(a)(1).
In Re Riggins, NO. 14-09-00255-CV (Tex.App.- Houston [14th Dist.] May 7, 2009)(per
curiam denial of mandamus,
mandamus standard not satisfied)


Mandamus relief is available when the relator establishes a clear abuse of discretion for which there is no
adequate appellate remedy.  See In re Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148 S.W.3d 124, 135 (Tex. 2004) (orig.
proceeding).  A trial court clearly abuses its discretion if it reaches a decision so arbitrary and
unreasonable as to constitute a clear and prejudicial error of law.  Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 839
(Tex. 1992) (orig. proceeding).  With respect to the resolution of fact issues, we will not substitute our
judgment for the trial court's.  See id.  Therefore, the relator must establish the trial court reasonably could
have reached only one decision.  See id. at 840.  On the other hand, a trial court has no discretion in
determining what the law is or applying the law to the facts; therefore, a clear failure by the trial court to
analyze or apply the law correctly constitutes an abuse of discretion, even in an unsettled area of law.  See
id.; Huie v. DeShazo, 922 S.W.2d 920, 927-28 (Tex. 1996) (orig. proceeding).  
In re Credit Suisse First
Boston Mortgage Capital LLC (Tex.App- Houston [14th Dist.] Dec. 18, 2008)(Hedges)(Tex.App- Houston
[14th Dist.] Dec. 18, 2008)(Hedges)(arbitration mandamus denied)(arbitration, nonsignatories, jury waiver,
nonsignatories,
agency theory, choice of law preemption, forum preemption)
[W]e hold that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by declining to extend the jury waiver on the basis
of allegations alone.  Because the right to a jury trial implicates constitutional guarantees,
we will not lightly
infer or extend a contractual jury waiver absent proof that the parties intended it to include claims against
nonsignatories.
MOTION OR WRIT DENIED: Opinion by
Chief Justice Hedges  
Before Chief Justice Hedges, Justices Hudson and Boyce
14-08-00819-CV  In Re: Credit Suisse First Boston Mortgage Capital, L.L.C. and Credit Suisse First
Boston, L.L.C.--Appeal from
165th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge: Elizabeth Ray



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