Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Ex parte Jeter

Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

March 23, 2018

Ex parte Kireem Jeter
v.
Kireem Jeter In re: Susie Bonner

          PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS Jefferson Circuit Court, CV-17-330

          DONALDSON, JUDGE.

         Kireem Jeter ("the father") petitions this court for a writ of mandamus directing the Jefferson Circuit Court ("the trial court") to grant his motion to dismiss the petition of Susie Bonner ("the maternal grandmother") seeking an order from the trial court to permit her to have visitation with the father's child, K.H.B. ("the child"). The father claims the trial court lacks subject-matter jurisdiction over the proceedings. For the reasons set forth below, we deny the petition.

         Background

         The materials submitted by the parties indicate the following. On September 7, 2017, the maternal grandmother filed a petition seeking visitation with the child, pursuant to § 30-3-4.2, Ala. Code 1975 ("the Grandparent Visitation Act"). On November 27, 2017, the father filed a motion to dismiss the petition for lack of jurisdiction. In his motion, the father asserted that the trial court lacked jurisdiction over the action because the child's other grandparents ("the other grandparents") had not been notified of the petition as required by the Grandparent Visitation Act. On November 28, 2017, the maternal grandmother filed certificates of service, indicating that a copy of the petition had been mailed to the child's maternal grandfather and the paternal grandmother, and she submitted an interrogatory to the father requesting the name and contact information of the child's paternal grandfather. On November 28, 2017, the maternal grandmother also filed a response to the motion to dismiss, arguing that the trial court should deny the motion to dismiss and direct the father to provide the requested information regarding the paternal grandfather. On November 28, 2017, the trial court entered an order denying the father's motion to dismiss and directing the maternal grandmother to amend her petition and provide notice to, or to serve, all necessary parties within 14 days. On January 2, 2018, the father filed a petition for the writ of mandamus challenging the denial of his motion to dismiss. We have jurisdiction to review the father's petition pursuant to § 12-3-10, Ala. Code 1975, and § 12-3-11, Ala. Code 1975.

         Standard of Review

         "'[T]he question of subject-matter jurisdiction is reviewable by a petition for a writ of mandamus.'" Ex Parte Reynolds, 209 So.3d 1122, 1125 (Ala. Civ. App. 2016) (quoting Ex parte Flint Constr. Co., 775 So.2d 805, 808 (Ala. 2000)).

"'"Mandamus is a drastic and extraordinary writ, to be issued only where there is (1) a clear legal right in the petitioner to the order sought; (2) an imperative duty upon the respondent to perform, accompanied by a refusal to do so; (3) the lack of another adequate remedy; and (4) properly invoked jurisdiction of the court."'"

Id. (quoting Ex parte Perfection Siding, Inc., 882 So.2d 307, 309-10 (Ala. 2003), quoting in turn Ex parte Integon Corp., 672 So.2d 497, 499 (Ala. 1995)).

         Discussion

         The father contends that the trial court lacked jurisdiction over the action.

"Jurisdiction is '[a] court's power to decide a case or issue a decree.' Black's Law Dictionary 867 (8th ed. 2004). Subject-matter jurisdiction concerns a court's power to decide certain types of cases. Woolf v. McGaugh, 175 Ala. 299, 303, 57 So. 754, 755 (1911) ('"By jurisdiction over the subject-matter is meant the nature of the cause of action and of the relief sought."' (quoting Cooper v. Reynolds, 77 U.S. (10 Wall.) 308, 316, 19 L.Ed. 931 (1870))). That power is derived from the Alabama Constitution and the Alabama Code. See United States v. Cotton, 535 U.S. 625, 630-31, 122 S.Ct. 1781, 152 L.Ed.2d 860 (2002) (subject-matter jurisdiction refers to a court's 'statutory or constitutional power' to adjudicate a case). ...
"Under the Alabama Constitution, a circuit court 'shall exercise general jurisdiction in all cases except as may be otherwise provided by law.' Amend. No. 328, ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.