Mandamus Relief In Conflict In Jurisdiction
In Abor v. Black, 695 S.W.2d 564, 566 (Tex. 1985), the Court held that because no injunction had been granted and no order actively interfered with the other court's jurisdiction, mandamus relief should be denied. Abor, 695 S.W.2d at 567.
Accordingly, the Abor rule applies, and mandamus is unavailable to review a denial of a plea in abatement based on the pendency of a first-filed action, "unless the courts were directly interfering with each other by issuing conflicting orders or injunctions." Hall v. Lawlis, 907 S.W.2d 493, 494 (Tex. 1995) (relying on Abor, 695 S.W.2d at 567).
The interference may not be incidental, but must rise to the level that it interferes with the other court's exercise of its jurisdiction. Abor, 695 S.W.2d at 567.
Texas courts of appeals have steadfastly applied the Abor rule, recognizing that a court cannot grant mandamus relief when both courts can proceed with their separate actions and one court has not attempted to divest the other of jurisdiction.
In re Ramsey, 28 S.W.3d 58, 63 (Tex. App.--Texarkana 2000, orig. proceeding);
In re Rio Grande Valley Gas Co., 987 S.W.2d 167, 172-73 (Tex. App.--Corpus Christi 1999, orig. proceeding);
Texas Commerce Bank, N.A. v. Prohl, 824 S.W.2d 228, 230 (Tex. App.--San Antonio 1992, orig. proceeding).
As a result, courts have granted mandamus relief only when "there is a conflict in jurisdiction between courts of coordinate jurisdiction and the proceedings in the trial court first taking jurisdiction have been improperly enjoined by the second court, or the first court has refused to proceed to trial." Dallas Fire Ins. Co. v. Davis, 893 S.W.2d 288, 294 (Tex. App.--Fort Worth 1995, orig. proceeding); Allstate Ins. Co. v. Garcia, 822 S.W.2d 348, 349 (Tex. App.--San Antonio 1992, orig. proceeding); Trapnell v. Hunter, 785 S.W.2d 426, 429 (Tex. App.--Corpus Christi 1990, orig. proceeding).