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WILLIE B. TURNER AND WILLA TURNER v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA AND PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT TRANSPORTATION AND GANNETT FLEMING CORDDRY AND CARPENTER (04/03/86)

filed: April 3, 1986.

WILLIE B. TURNER AND WILLA TURNER, HUSBAND AND WIFE
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA AND PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND GANNETT FLEMING CORDDRY AND CARPENTER, INC., AND MOUNT JOY TOWNSHIP AND MOUNT JOY TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY. APPEAL OF MOUNT JOY TOWNSHIP AND MOUNT JOY TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY



Appeal from the Order Entered on May 31, 1985 in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Civil Division, No. 2527 April Term, 1984.

COUNSEL

John B. Willcox, Philadelphia, for appellants.

Dale G. Larrimore, Philadelphia, for appellees.

Montemuro, Hoffman and Cercone, JJ.

Author: Cercone

[ 352 Pa. Super. Page 155]

Plaintiffs brought a cause of action in trespass arising out of an accident which occurred on April 14, 1982, in Mount Joy Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. They named as defendants the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,*fn1 Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, a corporation located in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, and Mount Joy Township and Mount Joy Township Sewer Authority. Plaintiffs brought their action in Philadelphia County. On May 21, 1984, the defendant Commonwealth of Pennsylvania filed preliminary objections to the Complaint which included an objection to venue in Philadelphia County. The

[ 352 Pa. Super. Page 156]

    trial court denied the preliminary objections on June 18, 1984.

On July 13, 1984, the appellant, Mount Joy Township and Mount Joy Sewer Authority, filed preliminary objections which raised once again a problem to venue in Philadelphia County. Both sets of preliminary objections were opposed and responded to by the plaintiff-appellees. Then, on March 21, 1985, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania filed a petition for change of venue to which appellees objected, and which was denied by the trial court on May 31, 1985. And on April 18, 1985, Mount Joy and Mount Joy Township filed a motion for Change of Venue or Motion for Reconsideration by their preliminary objections. This was denied by order on May 31, 1985. On June 7, 1985, appellees filed an election to deem the order final, which rendered an appeal therefrom an interlocutory one as of right pursuant to Pa.R.A.P. 311(b)(1).*fn2

Now, on appeal, appellants contend that in refusing to transfer venue from Philadelphia to Lancaster County, the trial court disregarded Pa.R.C.P. 2103(b) governing venue in an action against a political subdivision:

Except when the Commonwealth is the plaintiff, or when otherwise provided by an Act of . . . Assembly, an action against a political subdivision may be brought only in the county in which the political subdivision is located.

And, in the case of multiple defendants, one of which is a political subdivision, all such defendants may be sued in the county of the subdivision, according to Pa.R.C.P. 1006(c). However, this rule states an exception for actions in which the Commonwealth is a party defendant, as in this case. Rule 1006(c) provides:

An action to enforce a joint or joint and several liability against two or more defendants, ...


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