2003 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A
By: Representative Peranich, Coleman (29th), Fredericks, Moak, Reynolds, Watson
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 93-5-11, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT DIVORCE ACTIONS FILED IN THE WRONG VENUE MAY BE TRANSFERRED TO THE PROPER VENUE AND PROCEED AS THOUGH ORIGINALLY FILED IN THE PROPER VENUE; TO RATIFY, CONFIRM AND APPROVE ANY JUDGMENT OF DIVORCE, AND ANY ORDER RENDERED AS PART OF OR RELATED TO THE JUDGMENT WHETHER RENDERED AT THE TIME OF OR AFTER THE DATE OF THE JUDGMENT, BEFORE THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT IN A DIVORCE CASE THAT WAS FILED IN A WRONG VENUE AND TRANSFERRED TO THE VENUE IN WHICH IT MIGHT PROPERLY HAVE BEEN FILED, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER TRANSFERRED AS SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED BY LAW; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 93-5-11, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
93-5-11. (1) All complaints, except those based solely on the ground of irreconcilable differences, must be filed in the county in which the plaintiff resides, if the defendant be a nonresident of this state, or be absent, so that process cannot be served; and the manner of making such parties defendants so as to authorize a judgment against them in other chancery cases, shall be observed. If the defendant be a resident of this state, the complaint shall be filed in the county in which such defendant resides or may be found at the time, or in the county of the residence of the parties at the time of separation, if the plaintiff be still a resident of such county when the suit is instituted.
(2) A complaint for divorce based solely on the grounds of irreconcilable differences shall be filed in the county of residence of either party where both parties are residents of this state. If one (1) party is not a resident of this state, then the complaint shall be filed in the county where the resident party resides.
(3) Where an action is brought under this section in any chancery court of this state that lacks venue jurisdiction, such action shall not be dismissed because of lack of proper venue, but the court, on timely motion, shall transfer the action, together with all prepaid costs remaining after the court in which the action was originally brought has deducted the costs incurred in that court, to the venue to which it belongs and the case shall proceed as though originally filed therein. If there is no timely motion for the transfer of such an action, the court in which the action was originally filed shall dismiss the action.
SECTION 2. Any judgment of divorce, and any order rendered as part of or related to the judgment whether rendered at the time of or after the date of the judgment, before the effective date of House Bill No. ____, 2003 Regular Session, in a divorce case that was filed in a wrong venue and transferred to the venue in which it might properly have been filed, regardless of whether transferred as specifically authorized by law, is ratified, confirmed and approved.
SECTION 3. Section 2 of this act shall be codified as a separate section in Chapter 5, Title 93, Mississippi Code of 1972.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.