CHAPTER 250

FORMERLY

SENATE BILL NO. 216

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 25 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO JURISDICTION OF THE JUSTICE OF THE PEACE COURT IN SUMMARY POSSESSION ACTIONS.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE :

Section 1.  Amend §5701, Title 25 of the Delaware Code by deleting the section in its entirely and inserting in lieu thereof as follows:

Ҥ5701. Jurisdiction and venue.

An action for summary possession in accordance with §5702 of this title shall be maintained in the Justice of the Peace Court which hears civil cases in the county in which the premises or commercial rental unit is located.  In the event that more than one Justice of the Peace Court in a county hears civil cases, then an action shall be maintained in the Justice of the Peace Court that possesses territorial jurisdiction over the area in which the premises or commercial unit is located.  For purposes of this chapter, the term ‘rental agreement’ shall include a lease for a commercial rental unit. ”

Section 2. Amend Chapter 57 of Title 25 of the Delaware Code by inserting a new section §5701A to read as follows:

“5701A. Establishing territorial jurisdiction.

In any county in which more than one Justice of the Peace Court location has been designated to hear civil cases, each court location shall have a geographical area assigned to it for the purpose of establishing jurisdiction over actions for summary possession. Each court location shall be located within its given territory. Pursuant to §5701 of this Chapter, any action for summary possession involving a residential or commercial unit within a given territory shall be maintained at the Justice of the Peace Court which has jurisdiction over the given territory. Designation of the boundaries between territories shall be accomplished by Court Rule. In so doing, the Court may take into account the resources of each Justice of the Peace Court location; how these resources may be utilized best in serving the public good; convenience to the public; and population and demographic information, both current and projected.”

Approved June 26, 2008