EX PARTE RM LOGISTICS, INC.
RM Logistics, Inc.) (In re Thomas M. Elliott
for Writ of Mandamus (Walker Circuit Court, CV-16-900366),
Hugh D. Farris, J.
A. Tyra of Smith, Tyra, Thomas & Haggard, LLC, Alabaster.
Submitted on mandamus petition only.
October 19, 2016, Thomas M. Elliott filed in the Walker
Circuit Court ("the trial court") a complaint
seeking an award of workers compensation benefits from his
employer, RM Logistics, Inc. ("RM Logistics"). RM
Logistics answered the complaint and denied liability.
June 26, 2017, RM Logistics filed in the trial court a motion
to dismiss Elliotts complaint or, in the alternative, to
transfer the action on the basis that it was filed in an
improper venue. The trial court initially scheduled a hearing
on that motion for August 2, 2017. However, the trial court
rescheduled that hearing several times between July 2017 and
January 2018. In February 2018, after the hearing on its
motion had been rescheduled for the fourth time, RM Logistics
filed in the trial court a motion asking that the hearing be
conducted at the earliest possible date. On June 1, 2018, the
trial court scheduled a hearing for September 5, 2018, but on
July 20, 2018, it entered another order continuing that
hearing until October 3, 2018. On October 1, 2018, the trial
court entered an order that postponed the hearing on RM
Logistics June 26, 2017, motion for a sixth time. In its
October 1, 2018, order, the trial court did not set a
specific date for a hearing on RM Logistics June 26, 2017,
November 9, 2018, RM Logistics filed in this court a petition
for a writ of mandamus asking this court to either order the
trial court to dismiss Elliotts workers compensation claim
or order the trial court to transfer the action to the Shelby
Circuit Court, which, RM Logistics contends, is the
appropriate venue for Elliotts workers compensation action.
Neither Elliott nor the trial court has filed an answer to
the petition for a writ of mandamus.
" " 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.
Ex parte Integon Corp., 672 So.2d 497, 499 (Ala.
1995). When we consider a mandamus petition relating to a
venue ruling, our scope of review is to determine if the
trial court [exceeded] its discretion, i.e., whether it
exercised its discretion in an arbitrary and capricious
manner. Id. Our review is further limited to those
facts that were before the trial court. Ex parte American
Resources Ins. Co., 663 So.2d 932, 936 (Ala.
"Ex parte Southeast Alabama Timber Harvesting,
LLC, 94 So.3d 371, 373 (Ala. 2012) (quoting Ex parte
National Sec. Ins. Co., 727 So.2d 788, 789 (Ala. 1998)
Ex parte Nationwide Agribusiness Ins. Co., 276 So.3d
674, 677 (Ala. 2018).
brief filed in this court, RM Logistics acknowledges that the
trial court has not ruled on its June 26, 2017, motion to
dismiss or to transfer. Thus, there is no adverse ruling
upon which RM Logistics
can base that part of its petition for a writ of mandamus in
which it argues that the trial court erred ...