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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS: Matt King drowned in Cancun, Mexico while a guest at the Omni Cancun Hotel & Villa. His wife, Lynn Neel King, has not sued the Omni Cancun, but she did file a wrongful death and survival action in April 2003 in her individual capacity and as administratrix of her husband’s estate against the relators (Omni). That suit was filed in a Tarrant County statutory probate court. Omni filed a motion to transfer venue to a district court in Dallas County. While that motion was pending, King and Omni filed a “Consent to Transfer of Venue” with the probate court signed by counsel for each party which said: “The parties to this action, through their attorneys, agree and consent to transfer of venue to a civil district court in Tarrant County, Texas, which is a county of proper venue. “Tarrant County is a proper venue in this matter because all or part of the Plaintiff’s cause of action arose in Tarrant County. No mandatory venue statute requires that this action be maintained in the Probate Court of Tarrant, [sic] County.” Omni asserted that the day after this consent was filed, the judge of the probate court contacted its counsel, informing him that the court was not inclined to transfer the case to a district court in Tarrant County. That same day, Omni filed a letter brief with the Tarrant County probate court again urging it to transfer the case to a Tarrant County district court but requesting that, if the court did not do so, a hearing on Omni’s motion to transfer venue to Dallas County be heard and granted as soon as possible. Omni’s briefing stated that, about three weeks later, on Oct. 29, 2003, a hearing was held on its motion to transfer venue to Dallas County, and the probate court granted that motion. Omni also contended that, at the hearing, the probate court allowed Omni to withdraw the “Consent to Transfer of Venue.” King asserted in her briefing that Omni “verbally attempted to withdraw the Consent to Transfer Venue; however, [King] did not agree to it either verbally or in writing.” About fifteen days after the Tarrant County probate court signed the transfer order, King filed a motion in the Tarrant County probate court asking it to transfer the case back to that court. The motion was granted. Omni’s petition for a writ of mandamus was denied by the court of appeals. HOLDING: Denied. Venue of the wrongful death and survival action was proper in Tarrant County, and under former 5A of the Probate Code, which governs this case, the statutory probate court had concurrent jurisdiction with district courts of wrongful death and survival actions, the court concluded. The Tarrant County probate court had the authority under former 5B of the Probate Code, which applies in this case, to transfer the Dallas County suit back to itself since venue was proper in Tarrant County based the parties’ agreed statement of facts, the court held. OPINION: Per curiam.

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