Proposed legislation would give Alabama’s 67 district courts authority in civil matters involving $5,000 more than their current jurisdiction allows. The bill is on the House calendar for Tuesday, Feb. 28.
District courts currently have jurisdiction in civil matters where the amount in controversy is between $3,000 and $10,000. HB92 by Rep. Paul Beckman, R-Prattville, would increase district courts’ jurisdiction from all cases involving $10,000 or less in controversy to all cases of $15,000 or less. Circuit courts would then have jurisdiction in matters exceeding $15,000. Filing fees would remain the same.
Wednesday, Feb. 15, the House Judiciary Committee amended and approved Beckman’s bill. HB92 is fifth on the House’s 13-bill special order calendar for Feb. 28. A similar House bill made it to the Senate in 2016, but never received final approval.
Rep. Jim Hill, R-Moody, has introduced legislation that would increase the court’s civil jurisdiction even further. HB42 would increase the district courts’ jurisdiction to all cases of $25,000 or less. Also assigned to the House Judiciary Committee, Hill’s bill has yet to be considered.
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