In re Omnicare Pharmacy of Texas 1, LP
Dallas Court of Appeals, No. 05-17-00246-CV (August 31, 2017)
Justices Lang, Evans, and Stoddart (Opinion available here)
Once the cases were consolidated in Dallas County, Omnicare moved to dismiss pursuant to the forum selection clauses. Remarkable argued the Rule 11 agreement superseded the forum selection clauses and that Omnicare had waived its right to object to the Texas forum. The trial court agreed and denied the motion to dismiss.
The Dallas Court of Appeals conditionally granted a writ of mandamus, holding the forum selection clauses are enforceable and are unaffected by the Rule 11 agreement on venue. The Court distinguished the two types of agreements: “A forum-selection agreement is one that chooses another state or sovereign as the location for trial, whereas a venue-selection agreement chooses a particular county or court within that state or sovereign.” The Court held that the Rule 11 agreement merely permitted consolidation of the four cases into one in order to determine the jurisdictional issues. Once the cases were consolidated in Dallas County, the trial court should have concluded that Texas is not the proper forum to determine the merits of the cases and should have dismissed the cases pursuant to the forum selection clauses.