X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:The appellant, Jacqueline Polk, contends the trial court lacked jurisdiction because her case’s transfer to another district court did not comply with local rules. Polk contends the 400th District Court lacked jurisdiction to dismiss her case, because there was no written transfer order from the 268th District Court as the local rules require. Polk asserts the trial court abused its discretion by failing to give her notice and an oral hearing regarding appellees’ Motion to Dismiss for Want of Prosecution. Polk urges the court to find that the trial court’s subsequent hearing on her motion to reinstate failed to cure the lack of notice and a hearing on the motion to dismiss. Polk asserts the trial court abused its discretion when it denied her motion to reinstate. HOLDING:Affirmed. Polk correctly points out that the transfer of her case did not comply with Fort Bend County’s local rule: no written order of the 268th District Court judge, or a written consent of the 400th District Court judge, appears in the record. However, Polk provides no legal authority to support her contention that the lack of a written transfer order deprived the 400th District Court of jurisdiction. If a district court transfers a case that substantively does not qualify for transfer, the court that receives the improperly transferred case lacks jurisdiction and the error is reversible on appeal. A failure to comply with the local rule’s procedural requirements does not deprive a court of its jurisdiction. While the transferring and receiving courts should have complied with their own local rules regarding the transfer of cases, their failure to do so did not deprive the 400th District Court of jurisdiction over Polk’s case. Polk urges this court to find that the subsequent hearing on her motion to reinstate did not cure the failure to provide notice and a hearing on appellees’ motion to dismiss. A subsequent hearing on a party’s motion to reinstate cures any error in failing to provide notice or to hold a hearing on a previous motion to dismiss. But Polk urges the court to carve an exception from this rule when, as in her case, the hearing on the motion to reinstate is not held until after 75 days have elapsed from the trial court’s signing of the order of dismissal. Because the trial court retained plenary jurisdiction when it held the hearing on Polk’s motion to reinstate, the court declines to do so. Polk argued that the trial court erred in denying Polk’s motion to reinstate. At the reinstatement hearing, Polk received the same hearing with the same burden of proof she would have received had there been a hearing on the appellee’s motion to dismiss. The record does not reflect that Polk ever requested a trial setting. The only excuse offered for the delay was that Polk’s attorney forgot about the case after he moved to Alabama. “Under these facts, we cannot say the trial court abused its discretion in denying Polk’s motion to reinstate. Because the trial court could have properly dismissed Polk’s case and denied her motion to reinstate under its inherent power, we overrule Polk’s final issue.” OPINION:Wanda McKee Fowler, J.; Hedges, C.J., Fowler and Frost, JJ.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Benefits of a Digital Membership:

  • Free access to 3 articles* every 30 days
  • Access to the entire ALM network of websites
  • Unlimited access to the ALM suite of newsletters
  • Build custom alerts on any search topic of your choosing
  • Search by a wide range of topics

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

 
 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.