2001 Regular Session
To: Judiciary B
By: Representative Watson
House Bill 873
(As Passed the House)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 93-21-15, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE PROVISIONS REGARDING PROTECTIVE ORDERS IN DOMESTIC ABUSE CASES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 93-21-15, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
93-21-15. (1) The chancery court shall be empowered to grant any protective order or approve any consent agreement to bring about a cessation of abuse of the petitioner, any minor children, or any person alleged to be incompetent, which relief may include:
(a) Directing the defendant to refrain from abusing the petitioner, any minor children, or any person alleged to be incompetent;
(b) Granting possession to the petitioner of the residence or household to the exclusion of the defendant by evicting the defendant and/or restoring possession to the petitioner;
(c) When the defendant has a duty to support the petitioner, any minor children, or any person alleged to be incompetent living in the residence or household and the defendant is the sole owner or lessee, granting possession to the petitioner of the residence or household to the exclusion of the defendant by evicting the defendant and/or restoring possession to the petitioner, or by consent agreement allowing the defendant to provide suitable, alternate housing;
(d) Awarding temporary custody of and/or establishing temporary visitation rights with regard to any minor children or any person alleged to be incompetent;
(e) If the defendant is legally obligated to support the petitioner, any minor children, or any person alleged to be incompetent, ordering the defendant to pay temporary support for the petitioner, any minor children, or any person alleged to be incompetent;
(f) Ordering the defendant to pay to the abused person monetary compensation for losses suffered as a direct result of the abuse, including, but not limited to, medical expenses resulting from such abuse, loss of earnings or support, out-of-pocket losses for injuries sustained, moving expenses, a reasonable attorney's fee, and/or ordering counseling or professional medical treatment for the defendant and/or the abused person; and
(g) Prohibiting the transferring, encumbering, or otherwise disposing of property mutually owned or leased by the parties, except when in the ordinary course of business.
(2) (a) The court shall not issue mutual orders of protection without sufficient proof or probable cause. This does not preclude the court from issuing separate orders of protection against domestic violence where each party complied with the filing provisions of section 93-21-9. Compliance with the provisions of this section cannot be waived.
(b) The fact that a separate order of protection is granted to each opposing party shall not be legally sufficient to deny any remedy to either party or to prove that the parties are equally at fault or equally endangered.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2001.