2021 Georgia Code
Title 50 - State Government
Chapter 21 - Waiver of Sovereign Immunity as to Actions Ex Contractu; State Tort Claims
Article 2 - State Tort Claims
§ 50-21-28. Venue of Actions
All tort actions against the state under this article shall be brought in the state or superior court of the county wherein the tort giving rise to the loss occurred; provided, however, that wrongful death actions may be brought in the county wherein the tort giving rise to the loss occurred or the county wherein the decedent died, and provided, further, that in any case in which an officer or employee of the state may be included as a defendant in his or her individual capacity, the action may be brought in the county of residence of such officer or employee. All actions against the state for losses sustained in any other state shall be brought in the county of residence of any officer or employee residing in this state upon whose actions or omissions the claim against the state is based.
(Code 1981, §50-21-28, enacted by Ga. L. 1992, p. 1883, § 1; Ga. L. 2017, p. 628, § 1/SB 126.)Editor's notes.
- Ga. L. 2017, p. 628, § 2/SB 126, not codified by the General Assembly, provides that the amendment of this Code section shall apply only to causes of action filed on or after July 1, 2017.Law reviews.
- For article, "Trial Practice and Procedure," see 53 Mercer L. Rev. 475 (2001). For annual survey of administrative law, see 56 Mercer L. Rev. 31 (2004). For annual survey of tort law, see 68 Mercer L. Rev. 279 (2016). For annual survey on trial practice and procedure, see 69 Mercer L. Rev. 321 (2017).
County of death controls.
- Venue of a wrongful death action against the Department of Transportation arising from a highway auto accident was in the county where the death occurred, not where the accident took place. Evans v. DOT, 226 Ga. App. 74, 485 S.E.2d 243 (1997), aff'd, 269 Ga. 400, 499 S.E.2d 321 (1998).Venue proper where pain and suffering occurred.
- In an action under the Georgia Tort Claims Act, O.C.G.A. § 50-21-20 et seq., against a state hospital for negligent acts occurring in Richmond County, venue was proper in DeKalb County, where the patients underwent multiple corrective surgeries allegedly arising out of the alleged negligence because under O.C.G.A. §§ 50-21-22(3) and50-21-28 a tort action could be brought against the state in the county where economic loss, pain and suffering, mental anguish, and other elements of actual damages occurred. Bd. of Regents of the Univ. Sys. of Ga. v. Jordan, 335 Ga. App. 703, 782 S.E.2d 809 (2016).Constitutionality.
- O.C.G.A. § 50-21-28 does not violate Ga. Const. 1983, Art. VI, Sec. II, Par. IX, providing for venue in certain civil actions in the county where the defendant resides. Campbell v. Department of Cors., 268 Ga. 408, 490 S.E.2d 99 (1997).
Enactment of O.C.G.A. § 50-21-28 was a valid exercise of the General Assembly's authority pursuant to Ga. Const. 1983, Art. I, Sec. II, Para. IX, and establishes the proper venue in actions brought under the Georgia Tort Claims Act, O.C.G.A. § 50-21-20 et seq., against the state as the sole defendant. Campbell v. Department of Cors., 268 Ga. 408, 490 S.E.2d 99 (1997).
O.C.G.A. § 50-21-28 establishes the proper venue in actions brought under the Georgia Tort Claims Act, O.C.G.A. § 50-21-20 et seq., and against the state as the sole defendant. Doe #102 v. Department of Cors., 268 Ga. 582, 492 S.E.2d 516 (1997), cert. denied, 523 U.S. 1047, 118 S. Ct. 1363, 140 L. Ed. 2d 512 (1998).
Venue limitation set forth in O.C.G.A. § 50-21-28 is constitutional even though it is inconsistent with the joint tortfeasor venue provision of the constitution; moreover, because it is a special venue provision that is controlling and exclusive because of its use of the word "shall," it establishes the proper venue in tort actions against the state even when the state is not the sole tortfeasor. Dean v. Tabsum, Inc., 272 Ga. 831, 536 S.E.2d 743 (2000).
Cited in EHCA Cartersville, LLC v. Turner, 280 Ga. 333, 626 S.E.2d 482 (2006); Ga. Dep't of Human Servs. v. Dougherty County, 330 Ga. App. 581, 768 S.E.2d 771 (2015).