UNDER THE DOME
A look at court-related bills introduced during the second session of the 77th West Virginia Legislature.

Bill (sponsors): Purpose. ACTIONS.

SENATE
SB51 (Kessler and Hunter): The purpose of this bill is to permit persons to file for a name change who were born in, married in and previously were residents in the county where the petition is brought for at least fifteen years. SENATE PASSED JAN. 31. INTRODUCED IN HOUSE FEB. 1.
SB107 (Chafin): The purpose of this bill is to codify judicial precedent, i.e., Pittsburgh Elevator Co. v. W.Va. Bd. of Regents, 172 W. Va. 743, 310 S.E.2d 675 (1983), and subsequent opinions, that permit tort actions against the state to be filed in the county in which the cause of action arose, to the extent coverage is available under the state's liability insurance policy. COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE REPORTED FEB. 1.
SB114 (Kessler, Hunter and Foster): The purpose of this bill is to allow county commissions and city councils to assess fees of up to five dollars on persons convicted of felonies, misdemeanors or municipal ordinances to fund teen courts. COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE REPORTED FEB. 1
SB287 (Edgell): The purpose of this bill is to provide that the prosecuting attorney of Wetzel County shall serve as a part-time prosecuting attorney regardless of the classification of the county. INTRODUCED JAN. 26.
SB429 (Oliverio and Hunter): The purpose of this bill is to update the law relating to determining a person's competency to stand trial. INTRODUCED JAN. 30.
SB452 (Facemyer): The purpose of this bill is to provide for the automatic court-ordered transfer of title to marital property upon a decree of divorce. INTRODUCED FEB. 1
SB473 (Unger, Hunter and Kessler): The purpose of this bill is to provide that a person found to have acted in the absence of due care and attention, which violation of statute and absence of due care and attention, in combination, proximately caused a serious bodily injury or unintentional death may be fined an additional two thousand dollars and have three additional points assessed against his or her driver's license. INTRODUCED FEB. 2
SB474 (Foster, Minear, Sprouse, Guills, Sharpe, Barnes, McKenzie, Boley, McCabe, Edgell, Prezioso, Caruth, Fanning, Lanham, Jenkins, Helmick, Bailey, Weeks, Facemyer, Love, Deem and Dempsey): The purpose of this bill is to limit certain asbestos claims, provide for the fair and efficient judicial consideration of personal injury and wrongful death claims arising out of asbestos or silica exposure, to ensure that individuals who suffer impairment, now or in the future, from illnesses caused by exposure to asbestos or silica, receive compensation for their injuries, and for other purposes. INTRODUCED FEB. 2.
SB480 (Kessler, Dempsey, Fanning, Foster, Hunter, Jenkins, Minard, Oliverio, White, Caruth, Deem, Lanham and Weeks): The purpose of this bill is to make the payment provisions the same as those afforded in §50-3-2a. In 2002, the Legislature amended §50-3-2a by increasing the permissible amount of time for payment of a court judgement from 90 days to 180 days but did not amend the same provision in this section, §50-3-2. INTRODUCED FEB. 2, PASSED FEB. 7 AND SENT TO HOUSE, INTRODUCED FEB. 8.
SB482 (Kessler, Dempsey, Fanning, Foster, Minard, Oliverio, White, Barnes, Caruth, Deem, Harrison, Lanham and Weeks): The purpose of this bill is to change "family law master" to "family court judge." INTRODUCED FEB. 2
SB483 (Kessler, Dempsey, Fanning, Foster, Minard, Oliverio, White, Barnes, Caruth, Deem, Harrison, Lanham and Weeks): The purpose of this bill is to provide that a case filed in the circuit court pertaining to guardianship of a minor receive the same confidentiality as if it had been filed in family court. PASSED FEB. 7 AND SENT TO HOUSE, INTRODUCED FEB. 8.
SB484 (Kessler, Dempsey, Fanning, Foster, Minard, Oliverio, Barnes, Caruth, Deem, Harrison, Lanham and Weeks): The purpose of this bill is to allow counties and municipalities to use community corrections programs prior to trial as a condition of bond. PASSED FEB. 7 AND SENT TO HOUSE.
SB497 (Kessler): The purpose of this bill is to repeal §59-2-2, which requires nonresident plaintiffs to post security bond or cash for court costs. INTRODUCED FEB. 3.
SB508 (Love, Dempsey, Barnes, Oliverio, Bowman and Kessler): The purpose of this bill is to increase salaries for magistrate clerks, magistrate assistants and magistrate deputy clerks. INTRODUCED FEB. 7.
SB515 (Jenkins and Plymale): The purpose of this bill is to increase salaries for magistrate clerks, magistrate assistants and magistrate deputy clerks. INTRODUCED FEB. 7.
SB516 (Love, Sharpe, Edgell and Minear):The purpose of this bill is for the Legislature to find and declare the existence of a moral obligation to pay, with public moneys, each of the claims herein against specified state agencies and the State of West Virginia, by the named claimants, payable from the specified funds, and in the amounts of the awards made. INTRODUCED FEB. 7.
SB522 (Bowman and Kessler): The purpose of this bill is to require every professional licensed in this state to notify their professional licensing board when a malpractice lawsuit has been filed against the licensee. INTRODUCED FEB. 8.

HOUSE OF DELEGATES
HB2329 (Ennis, Swartzmiller and G. White): The purpose of this bill is to authorize courts to order defendants to contribute monetarily or through hours of service, to local victim's crime assistance programs or juvenile mediation programs which meet certain requirements. PASSED JAN. 25 AND SENT TO SENATE, INTRODUCED JAN. 26.
HB4041 (Michael): The purpose of this bill is to provide immunity from civil damages for persons who volunteer their services to a public health department. INTRODUCED JAN. 18.
HB4042 (Amores): The purpose of this bill is to provide the interest rates for prejudgment and post-judgment awards to three percentage points above the Fifth Federal Reserve District discount rate for the calendar year of the judgment. INTRODUCED JAN. 18.
HB4043 (Amores): The purpose of this bill is to provide employer immunity from civil liability for job-related information disclosed regarding former employees. INTRODUCED JAN. 18.
HB4047 (Pethtel, Varner, Proudfoot): The purpose of this bill is to provide that the prosecuting attorney of Wetzel County shall serve as a part-time prosecuting attorney regardless of the classification of the county. INTRODUCED JAN. 18, PASSED FEB. 1 AND SENT TO SENATE, INTRODUCED FEB. 2.
HB4084 (Louisos): The purpose of this bill is to provide that a woman who obtains an abortion has a cause of action against any physician who, in performing an abortion, causes injury to the woman or to her unborn child. The bill also provides that damages may not be limited in spite of the execution of a consent form and that the cause of action is not subject to a statute of limitations. INTRODUCED JAN. 24.
HB4087 (Louisos): The purpose of this bill is to allow the purchaser of at least fifty percent of a business in default of payments, interest or penalties for unemployment compensation and workers' compensation to recover from the owners or investors of the business in default. INTRODUCED JAN. 24.
HB4096 (Amores, Craig, Mahan and Armstead): The purpose of this bill is to limit the amount of a bond on appeal of a civil matter to $25 million unless an appellant is purposefully dissipating of diverting assets so that the ability to pay the ultimate judgement is impaired. INTRODUCED JAN. 24, PASSED FEB. 8 AND SENT TO SENATE.
HB4105 (Williams and Tabb): The purpose of this bill is to require persons who have judgments against them and their wages being attached by suggestee execution to notify the clerk of the court issuing the execution of any change of job status or employer. Failure to do so is made a misdemeanor. INTRODUCED JAN. 25.
HB4118 (Wysong, Doyle and Tabb): The purpose of this bill is to add one circuit court judge to the twenty-third judicial circuit, which is comprised of Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan. INTRODUCED JAN. 26.
HB4122 (Porter and Lane): The purpose of this bill is to immunize caretakers and owners of cemeteries from liability to persons injured while visiting a cemetery. INTRODUCED JAN. 26.
HB4133 (Perry, Amores, Craig, Perdue, Campbell, Long, Anderson, Howard and Cann): The purpose of this bill is to clarify that magistrate courts have concurrent juvenile jurisdiction with the circuit court with regard to enforcement of laws prohibiting the possession or use of tobacco or tobacco products by minors. The bill also gives to concurrent juvenile jurisdiction to municipal courts. INTRODUCED JAN. 26, PASSED FEB. 3 AND SENT TO SENATE, INTRODUCED FEB. 6.
HB4296 (Craig, Amores, Morgan and Leach): The purpose of this bill is to provide employer immunity from civil liability for disclosing job-related information concerning an employee or former employee to a prospective employer. INTRODUCED JAN. 31, PASSED FEB. 8 AND SENT TO SENATE.
HB4312 (Staton, Trump, Mahan and Brown): The purpose of this bill is to raise the minimum salary of child support enforcment attorneys from $35,000 to $45,000. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4316 (G. White, Beane, DeLong, Ennis, Yost, Varner and Wakim): The purpose of this bill is to eliminate the requirement that certain actions involving the state must be prosecuted in Kanawha County. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4319 (Stalnaker and H. White): The purpose of this bill is to equally compensate all state magistrates at the higher tier salary schedule. INTRODUCED FEB. 1
HB4326 (Beach, Perry, Paxton, Kominar, Varner, Houston and Swartzmiller): The purpose of this bill is to enact the Drug Dealer Liability Act. The bill allows the recovery of civil damages against those participating in the illegal drug market. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4338 (Boggs and Mahan): The purpose of this bill is to prescribe minimum standards for municipal judges and to, additionally require criminal background checks of persons applying for municipal judgeships. The bill also requires municipal judges to receive continuing legal training. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4340 (Beane and G. White): The purpose of this bill is to require circuit judges to require repayment of the costs of legal representation provided by the public defender system under certain circumstances. The bill also requires the State Auditor to report on amounts repaid. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4348 (Craig, Long, Amores, Sobonya, Pino, Trump, Armstead, Michael, Kominar, Howard and Morgan): The purpose of this bill is to limit certain asbestos claims, provide for the fair and efficient judicial consideration of personal injury and wrongful death claims arising out of asbestos or silica exposure, to ensure that individuals who suffer impairment, now or in the future, from illnesses caused by exposure to asbestos or silica, receive compensation for their injuries, and for other purposes. INTRODUCED FEB. 1.
HB4364 (Louisos): The purpose of this bill is to provide for a process in which to enlist binding arbitration in state employee grievance procedures. INTRODUCED FEB. 2.
HB4397 (Louisos): The purpose of this bill is to provide for jury trials in certain administrative proceedings involving contested cases. INTRODUCED FEB. 6.
HB4409 (Howard): The purpose of this bill is to elect all justices to the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals and all circuit court judges on a nonpartisan basis. INTRODUCED FEB. 6.
HB4422 (Hunt): The purpose of this bill is to provide that the applicable statute of limitations is tolled as to all potential third-party defendants after an initial tortfeasor is sued. INTRODUCED FEB. 6.
HB4430 (Beach, Hamilton, Perry and Varner): The purpose of this bill is to exempt magistrates from the licensing requirements for carrying a concealed weapon. INTRODUCED FEB. 6.
HB4446 (Kiss, Cann, Stemple, Pethtel, Swartzmiller and H. K. White): The purpose of this bill is to grant the West Virginia Contractors Licensing Board the authority to restrict a licensee's ability to work until the licensee satisfies an adverse judgment in favor of a consumer entered by a magistrate or circuit court. INTRODUCED FEB. 7.
HB4450 (Houston): The purpose of this bill is to prohibit the performance of any abortion by any person who has admitted to or who has been adjudicated to have committed medical malpractice. The bill also prescribes a criminal penalty for violations of this section and further provides that nothing in this section can be construed as approving of abortion. INTRODUCED FEB. 7.

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