Bill Text: MS SB2355 | 2021 | Regular Session | Engrossed


Bill Title: Age of majority; revise.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Republican 1-0)

Status: (Failed) 2021-03-02 - Died In Committee [SB2355 Detail]

Download: Mississippi-2021-SB2355-Engrossed.html

MISSISSIPPI LEGISLATURE

2021 Regular Session

To: Judiciary, Division A

By: Senator(s) DeBar

Senate Bill 2355

(As Passed the Senate)

AN ACT TO LOWER THE AGE OF MAJORITY FROM 21 TO 18; TO AMEND SECTION 1-3-21, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE DEFINITION OF INFANT; TO AMEND SECTION 1-3-27, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE DEFINITION OF MINOR; TO AMEND SECTION 11-5-115, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO SALE OR CONVEYANCE OF A MINOR'S PROPERTY; TO AMEND SECTION 11-46-11, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE SAVINGS CLAUSE OF THE TORT CLAIMS ACT TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTIONS 13-5-1 AND 13-5-12, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE AGE OF JURY SERVICE; TO AMEND SECTION 15-1-17, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE LIMITATIONS APPLICABLE TO ACTIONS OR SUITS TO CANCEL TAX TITLES TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 15-1-27, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE LIMITATIONS APPLICABLE TO AN ACTION BY A WARD AGAINST A GUARDIAN OR SURETY; TO AMEND SECTION 15-1-59, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE SAVING IN FAVOR OF PERSONS UNDER DISABILITY OF UNSOUNDNESS OF MIND WITHIN THE CHAPTER ADDRESSING THE LIMITATIONS OF CIVIL ACTIONS; TO AMEND SECTION 21-15-13, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE MILITIA POWER OF THE MAYOR TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 25-4-3, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE DEFINITION OF "HOUSEHOLD MEMBER" WITHIN THE ARTICLE ESTABLISHING THE MISSISSIPPI ETHICS COMMISSION TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 41-29-145, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE PUNISHMENT OF THE DISTRIBUTION OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES TO MINORS TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 43-19-33, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE AGE OF MANDATORY SUPPORT IN AN ORDER OF FILIATION; TO AMEND SECTION 91-5-3, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO AGE OF ISSUE CAPABLE OF INHERITING; TO AMEND SECTION 91-7-293, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO FINAL ACCOUNTING BY THE HEIRS OF AN ESTATE; TO AMEND SECTION 91-20-3, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO TRANSFERS TO MINORS WITHIN TRUST AND ESTATE LAW; TO AMEND SECTION 91-20-41, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REQUIRE CUSTODIANS TO TRANSFER CERTAIN CUSTODIAL PROPERTY TO A MINOR'S ESTATE TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 93-1-5, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE AGE FOR ISSUANCE OF A MARRIAGE LICENSE; TO AMEND SECTION 93-9-9, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM PROVISIONS AS TO AGE FOR THE TERMS OF A DECREE FOR REMOVAL OF THE DISABILITY OF A MINOR; TO AMEND SECTION 93-11-65, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE AGE OF EMANCIPATION; TO AMEND SECTION 93-14-102, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE DEFINITION OF THE TERM "ADULT" FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE UNIFORM ADULT GUARDIANSHIP AND PROTECTIVE PROCEEDINGS JURISDICTION ACT; TO AMEND SECTION 93-15-103, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE DEFINITION OF THE TERM "MINOR PARENT" IN THE TERMINATION OF PARENTAL RIGHTS LAW; TO AMEND SECTION 93-17-5, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO THE AGE OF PARENTS IN AN ADOPTION; TO AMEND SECTION 93-17-205, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE PROVISIONS CONCERNING ADOPTION RECORDS TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 93-17-215, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO A PERSON'S AUTHORITY TO REQUEST CERTAIN INFORMATION CONCERNING ADOPTION; TO AMEND SECTION 93-19-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE AGE FOR REMOVAL OF DISABILITY AS TO REAL ESTATE; TO AMEND SECTION 93-19-9, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE PROVISIONS AS TO THE TERMS OF A DECREE REMOVING THE DISABILITY OF MINORITY; TO AMEND SECTION 93-20-102, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE AGE OF MAJORITY UNDER GUARDIANSHIP AND CONSERVATORSHIP LAW TO CONFORM; TO AMEND SECTION 97-33-23, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM THE PENALTY FOR GAMBLING WITH A KNOWN MINOR; TO AMEND SECTION 99-3-45, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM AS TO WHICH PERSONS MUST BE GIVEN CERTAIN NOTICE UPON RELEASE FROM ARREST; TO REPEAL SECTION 35-7-43, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH PROVIDES FOR THE REMOVAL OF THE DISABILITIES OF MINORITY OF CERTAIN VETERANS; TO REPEAL SECTION 91-7-37, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH PROVIDES FOR THE REMOVAL OF THE DISABILITIES OF MINORITY FOR CERTAIN EXECUTORS, EXECUTRIXES, ADMINISTRATORS OR ADMINISTRATRIXES; TO REPEAL SECTION 93-3-11, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH PROVIDES FOR THE REMOVAL OF THE DISABILITIES OF MINORITY OF CERTAIN MARRIED PERSONS WITH RESPECT TO HOMESTEAD TRANSACTIONS; TO REPEAL SECTION 93-19-13, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH PROVIDES THAT ALL PERSONS 18 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER, IF NOT OTHERWISE DISQUALIFIED, SHALL HAVE THE CAPACITY TO ENTER INTO BINDING CONTRACTUAL RELATIONSHIPS AFFECTING PERSONAL PROPERTY AND THAT AN 18-YEAR-OLD MAY SUE AND BE SUED IN HIS OWN NAME AS AN ADULT AND BE SERVED WITH PROCESS AS AN ADULT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

     BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:

     SECTION 1.  Section 1-3-21, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     1-3-21.  The term "infant," when used in any statute, shall include any person, male or female, under * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years of age, except where another section specifically provides otherwise.

     SECTION 2.  Section 1-3-27, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     1-3-27.  The term "minor," when used in any statute, shall include any person, male or female, under * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years of age, except where another section specifically provides otherwise.

     SECTION 3.  Section 11-5-115, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     11-5-115.  When a decree shall be made for the sale or conveyance of the real estate of an infant, such decree shall be binding on the infant unless he shall, within one (1) year after attaining the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years, show to the court good cause to the contrary; and it shall not be necessary to insert the saving in the decree, but the saving shall not extend to decrees for the sale of the property of deceased persons, authorizing sales by guardians, or enforcing deeds of trust or mortgages.

     SECTION 4.  Section 11-46-11, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     11-46-11.  (1)  After all procedures within a governmental entity have been exhausted, any person having a claim under this chapter shall proceed as he might in any action at law or in equity, except that at least ninety (90) days before instituting suit, the person must file a notice of claim with the chief executive officer of the governmental entity.

     (2)  (a)  Service of notice of claim shall be made as follows:

              (i)  For local governments:

                   1.  If the governmental entity is a county, then upon the chancery clerk of the county sued;

                   2.  If the governmental entity is a municipality, then upon the city clerk.

              (ii)  If the governmental entity to be sued is a state entity as defined in Section 11-46-1(j), or is a political subdivision other than a county or municipality, service of notice of claim shall be had only upon that entity's or political subdivision's chief executive officer.  The chief executive officer of a governmental entity participating in a plan administered by the board pursuant to Section 11-46-7(3) shall notify the board of any claims filed within five (5) days after receipt thereof.

          (b)  Every notice of claim shall:

              (i)  Be in writing;

              (ii)  Be delivered in person or by registered or certified United States mail; and

              (iii)  Contain a short and plain statement of the facts upon which the claim is based, including the circumstances which brought about the injury, the extent of the injury, the time and place the injury occurred, the names of all persons known to be involved, the amount of money damages sought, and the residence of the person making the claim at the time of the injury and at the time of filing the notice.

     (3)  (a)  All actions brought under this chapter shall be commenced within one (1) year next after the date of the tortious, wrongful or otherwise actionable conduct on which the liability phase of the action is based, and not after, except that filing a notice of claim within the required one-year period will toll the statute of limitations for ninety-five (95) days from the date the chief executive officer of the state entity or the chief executive officer or other statutorily designated official of a political subdivision receives the notice of claim.

          (b)  No action whatsoever may be maintained by the claimant until the claimant receives a notice of denial of claim or the tolling period expires, whichever comes first, after which the claimant has an additional ninety (90) days to file suit; failure to file within the time allowed is an absolute bar to any further proceedings under this chapter.

          (c)  All notices of denial of claim shall be served by governmental entities upon claimants by certified mail, return receipt requested, only.

          (d)  (i)  To determine the running of limitations periods under this chapter, service of any notice of claim or notice of denial of claim is effective upon delivery by the methods statutorily designated in this chapter.

              (ii)  The limitations period provided in this section controls and shall be exclusive in all actions subject to and brought under the provisions of this chapter, notwithstanding the nature of the claim, the label or other characterization the claimant may use to describe it, or the provisions of any other statute of limitations that would otherwise govern the type of claim or legal theory if it were not subject to or brought under the provisions of this chapter.

     (4) * * *  From and after April 1, 1993,  If any person entitled to bring any action under this chapter shall, at the time at which the cause of action accrued, be under the disability of infancy or unsoundness of mind, he may bring the action within the time allowed in this section after his disability shall be removed as provided by law.  The savings in favor of persons under disability of unsoundness of mind shall never extend longer than * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.

     SECTION 5.  Section 13-5-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     13-5-1.  Every citizen not under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years, who is either a qualified elector, or a resident freeholder of the county for more than one (1) year, is able to read and write, and has not been convicted of an infamous crime, or the unlawful sale of intoxicating liquors within a period of five (5) years and who is not a common gambler or habitual drunkard, is a competent juror.  No person who is or has been within twelve (12) months the overseer of a public road or road contractor shall, however, be competent to serve as a grand juror.  The lack of any such qualifications on the part of one or more jurors shall not, however, vitiate an indictment or verdict.  Moreover, no talesman or tales juror shall be qualified who has served as such talesman or tales juror in the last preceding two (2) years, and no juror shall serve on any jury who has served as such for the last preceding two (2) years.  No juror shall serve who has a case of his own pending in that court, provided there are sufficient qualified jurors in the district, and for trial at that term.

     In order to determine that prospective jurors can read and write, the presiding judge shall, with the assistance of the clerk, distribute to the jury panel a form to be completed personally by each juror prior to being empaneled as follows:

     "1.  Your name ________ last ________ first ________ middle initial.

     2.  Your home address ________.

     3.  Your occupation ________.

     4.  Your age ________.

     5.  Your telephone number ________.  If none, write none.

     6.  If you live outside the county seat, the number of miles you live from the courthouse ________ miles.

                                      ______________________

                                      Sign your name"

     The judge shall personally examine the answers of each juror prior to empaneling the jury and each juror who cannot complete the above form shall be disqualified as a juror and discharged.

     A list of any jurors disqualified for jury duty by reason of inability to complete the form shall be kept by the circuit clerk and their names shall not be placed in the jury box thereafter until such person can qualify as above provided.

     SECTION 6.  Section 13-5-12, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     13-5-12.  Unless all the names on the master list are to be placed in the jury wheel pursuant to Section 13-5-10, the names or identifying numbers of prospective jurors to be placed in the jury wheel shall be selected by the jury commission at random from the master list in the following manner:  The total number of names on the master list shall be divided by the number of names to be placed in the jury wheel; the whole number nearest the quotient shall be the "key number," except that the key number shall never be less than two (2).  A "starting number" for making the selection shall then be determined by a random method from the number from one (1) to the key number, both inclusive.  The required number of names shall then be selected from the master list by taking in order the first name on the master list corresponding to the starting number and then successively the names appearing in the master list at intervals equal to the key number, recommencing if necessary at the start of the list until the required number of names has been selected.  The name of any person who is under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years and the name of any person who has been permanently excused from jury service pursuant to Section 13-5-23(4) shall be passed over without interrupting the sequence of selection.  Any person who has been excluded from the master list for jury service may be reinstated to the master list after one (1) year by requesting that the circuit clerk reinstate him to the master list.  Upon recommencing at the start of the list, names previously selected from the master list shall be disregarded in selecting the additional names.  The jury commission may use an electronic or mechanical system or device in carrying out its duties.

     SECTION 7.  Section 15-1-17, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     15-1-17.  The owner, mortgagee or other person interested in any land which has been sold or forfeited to the state for delinquent taxes may bring a suit or action to cancel the title of the state, or its patentees, or to recover said land from the state, or its patentees, on account of any defect, irregularity or illegality in the assessment, levy or sale of such land for delinquent taxes within two (2) years after the period of redemption shall have expired, and not thereafter.  However, the limitations herein fixed shall not apply when the taxes on such land had been paid prior to the time it was sold for taxes.

     If any person entitled to bring any such suit or action shall, at the time at which the cause of action accrues, be under the disability of infancy, or unsoundness of mind, he may bring the suit or action within the time in this section respectively limited after his disability shall be removed but the saving of persons under disability shall never extend longer than * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.

     The completion of the limitation herein prescribed to bar any action shall defeat and extinguish all the right, title and interest, including the right of possession in and to such land, of any and all persons whatsoever, except the State of Mississippi and its patentees, and it shall vest in the state, and its patentees, a fee simple title to such lands.

     SECTION 8.  Section 15-1-27, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     15-1-27.  All actions against a guardian and the sureties on his bond, or either of them, by the ward, shall be commenced within five (5) years next after the ward shall have arrived at the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years, and not after.

     SECTION 9.  Section 15-1-59, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     15-1-59.  If any person entitled to bring any of the personal actions mentioned shall, at the time at which the cause of action accrued, be under the disability of infancy or unsoundness of mind, he may bring the actions within the times in this chapter respectively limited, after his disability shall be removed as provided by law.  However, the saving in favor of persons under disability of unsoundness of mind shall never extend longer than * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.

     SECTION 10.  Section 21-15-13, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     21-15-13.  The mayor is authorized to call on every male inhabitant of the municipality over * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years of age and under sixty (60) years to aid in enforcing the laws.

     SECTION 11.  Section 25-4-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     25-4-3.  As used in this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise:

          (a)  "Advisory boards or commissions" means committees created solely to provide technical or professional knowledge or expertise to a parent organization, and whose members exercise no direct authority to expend public funds other than reimbursement for personal expenses incurred as a result of a member's service on the advisory board;

          (b)  "Business" means any corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship, firm, enterprise, franchise, association, organization, holding company, self-employed individual, joint-stock company, receivership, trust or other legal entity or undertaking organized for economic gain or a nonprofit corporation or other such entity, association or organization receiving public funds;

          (c)  "Candidate for public office" means an individual who has filed the necessary documents or papers to appear as a candidate for nomination for election or election to any elective office existing under the laws of the State of Mississippi, including primary, special or general elections.  The term "candidate" does not include any person within the meaning of Section 301(b) of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971;

          (d)  "Commission" means the Mississippi Ethics Commission;

          (e)  "Compensation" means money or thing of value received, or to be received, from any person for services rendered or to be rendered;

          (f)  "Household member" means:

              (i)  The spouse of the public servant; or

              (ii)  Any person over the age of * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) who resided in the public servant's household during the entire reporting period.

          (g)  "Income" means money or thing of value received, or to be received, from any source, including, but not limited to, any salary, wage, advance, payment, dividend, interest, rent, forgiveness of debt, fee, royalty or any combination thereof;

          (h)  "Person" means any individual, firm, business, corporation, association, partnership, union or other legal entity;

          (i)  "Public employee" means any individual who receives a salary, per diem or expenses paid in whole or in part out of funds authorized to be expended by the Mississippi State Legislature or by the governing body of any political subdivision thereof, or any other body politic within the State of Mississippi;

          (j)  "Public funds" means all monies, whether federal, state, district or local;

          (k)  "Public official" means:

              (i)  Any elected official of the State of Mississippi or any political subdivision thereof or any other body politic within the State of Mississippi; or

              (ii)  Any member, officer, director, commissioner, supervisor, chief, head, agent or employee of the State of Mississippi, or any agency thereof, of any political subdivision of the State of Mississippi, of any body politic within the State of Mississippi, or of any public entity created by or under the laws of the State of Mississippi or by executive order of the Governor of the state, any of which is funded by public funds or which expends, authorizes or recommends the use of public funds;

          (l)  "Public servant" means:

              (i)  Any elected or appointed official of the government;

              (ii)  Any officer, director, commissioner, supervisor, chief, head, agent or employee of the government or any agency thereof, or of any public entity created by or under the laws of the State of Mississippi or created by an agency or governmental entity thereof, any of which is funded by public funds or which expends, authorizes or recommends the use of public funds; or

              (iii)  Any individual who receives a salary, per diem or expenses paid in whole or in part out of funds authorized to be expended by the government.

     SECTION 12.  Section 41-29-145, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     41-29-145.  Any person * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years of age or over who violates subsections (a) and (b) of Section 41-29-139 with reference to a controlled substance listed in Schedules I, II, III, IV and V as set out in Sections 41-29-113 through 41-29-121, inclusive, to a person under * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age may be punished by the fine authorized by Section 41-29-139, or by a term of imprisonment or confinement up to twice that authorized by said Section 41-29-139, or both, or he may be punished as provided in Section 41-29-142.

     SECTION 13.  Section 43-19-33, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     43-19-33.  (1)  In lieu of legal proceedings instituted to obtain support for a dependent child from the responsible parent, a written stipulated agreement to support said child by periodic payments executed by the responsible parent when acknowledged before a clerk of the court having jurisdiction over such matters or a notary public and filed with and approved by the judge of the court having jurisdiction over such matters shall have the same force and effect, retroactively and prospectively, in accordance with the terms of said agreement as an order of support entered by the court, and shall be enforceable and subject to modification in the same manner as is provided by law for orders of the court in such cases.

     (2)  In lieu of legal proceedings instituted to establish paternity, a written admission of paternity containing a stipulated agreement of support executed by the putative father of the dependent child, when accompanied by a written declaration in support of establishing paternity provided under penalty of perjury to the best of her knowledge, information and belief by the mother of the dependent child, when acknowledged by the putative father before a clerk of the court having jurisdiction over such matters or a notary public and filed with and approved by the judge of the court having jurisdiction over such matters, shall have the same force and effect, retroactively and prospectively, in accordance with the terms of said agreement, as an order of filiation and support entered by the court, and shall be enforceable and subject to modification in the same manner as is provided by law for orders of the court in such cases.

     (3)  At any time after filing with the court having continuing jurisdiction of such matters of an acknowledgment of paternity in which a provision of support has not been entered, upon notice the defendant shall be required to appear in court at any time and place named therein, to show cause, if any he can, why the court should not enter an order for the support of the child by periodic payments.  The order may include provisions for reimbursement for medical expenses incident to the pregnancy and the birth of the child, accrued maintenance and reasonable expenses of the action under this subsection on the acknowledgment of paternity previously filed with said court.  Notice by the department to the defendant shall be given by certified mail, restricted delivery, return receipt requested at his last known mailing address and without the requirement of a summons being issued, and shall be deemed complete as of the date of delivery as evidenced by the return receipt.  The required notice may also be delivered by personal service in accordance with Rule 4 of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure insofar as service of an administrative order or notice is concerned.  Provided, that in the case of a child who, upon reaching the age of * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years, is mentally or physically incapable of self-support and is no longer attending high school, the putative father shall not be relieved of the duty of support unless said child is a long-term patient in a facility owned or operated by the State of Mississippi.  The prior judgment as to paternity shall be res judicata as to that issue and shall not be reconsidered by the court.

     (4)  Such agreements of support, acknowledgments, declarations and affirmations of paternity and support shall be binding on the person executing the same whether he be an adult or a minor and may include provisions for the reimbursement of medical expenses incident to the pregnancy and birth of the child, accrued maintenance and reasonable expenses of any action previously filed before the court.

     (5)  In lieu of legal proceedings instituted to enforce an order for support, a written stipulated agreement for the provision of periodic payments towards an arrearage executed by the defendant when acknowledged before a clerk of the court having jurisdiction over such matters or a notary public and filed with and approved by the judge of the court having jurisdiction over such matters shall have the same force and effect, retroactively and prospectively, in accordance with the terms of said agreement as a judgment for overdue support entered by the court, and shall be enforceable and subject to modification in the same manner as is provided by law for orders of the court in such cases.

     (6)  All agreements entered into under the provisions as set forth hereinabove shall be filed by the clerk of the court having jurisdiction over such matters in the county in which they are entered and filing fees shall be taxed to the responsible parent.

     SECTION 14.  Section 91-5-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     91-5-3.  A devise so made, or any clause thereof, shall not be revocable but by the testator or testatrix destroying, canceling, or obliterating the same, or causing it to be done in his or her presence, or by subsequent will, codicil, or declaration, in writing, made and executed.  Every last will and testament made when the testator or testatrix had no child living, wherein any child he or she might have is not provided for or not mentioned, if at the time of his or her death he or she have a child, or if the testator leave his wife enceinte of a child who shall be born, shall have no effect during the life of any such after-born child and shall be void unless the child die without having been married, or without leaving issue capable of inheriting, and before he or she shall have attained * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.  The estate, both real and personal, so devised shall descend to such child in the same manner as if the testator or testatrix had died intestate, subject, nevertheless, to the bequests made in the last will and testament in case of the death of such child before marriage, or without issue capable of inheriting, and under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.  When a testator shall leave children born and his wife enceinte, the posthumous child or children, if unprovided for by settlement and neither provided for nor disinherited, but only pretermitted, by the last will and testament, shall succeed to the same portion of the father's estate as such child or children would have been entitled to if the father had died intestate, towards raising which portion the devisees and legatees shall contribute proportionably out of the parts devised and bequeathed to them by the same will and testament.

     SECTION 15.  Section 91-7-293, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     91-7-293.  The executor or administrator shall file with his final account a written statement, under oath, of the names of the heirs or devisees and legatees of the estate, so far as known, specifying particularly which, if any, are under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years, of unsound mind, or convict of felony; the places of residence of each and their post-office address if they be nonresidents or, if the post-office address be unknown, the statement must aver that diligent inquiry has been made to learn the same without avail and giving the names and places of residence of the guardians of all who have guardians, so far as known.

     SECTION 16.  Section 91-20-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     91-20-3.  In this chapter:

          (a)  "Adult" means an individual who has attained the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.

          (b)  "Benefit plan" means an employer's plan for the benefit of an employee or partner.

          (c)  "Broker" means a person lawfully engaged in the business of effecting transactions in securities or commodities for the person's own account or for the account of others.

          (d)  "Conservator" means a person appointed or qualified by a court to act as general, limited or temporary guardian of a minor's property or a person legally authorized to perform substantially the same functions.

          (e)  "Court" means the chancery court of the county in which the parties reside.

          (f)  "Custodial property" means (i) any interest in property transferred to a custodian under this chapter and (ii) the income from and proceeds of that interest in property.

          (g)  "Custodian" means a person so designated under Section 91-20-19 or a successor or substitute custodian designated under Section 91-20-37.

          (h)  "Financial institution" means a bank, trust company, savings institution or credit union, chartered and supervised under state or federal law.

          (i)  "Legal representative" means an individual's personal representative or conservator.

          (j)  "Member of the minor's family" means the minor's parent, stepparent, spouse, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle or aunt, whether of the whole or half blood or by adoption.

          (k)  "Minor" means an individual who has not attained the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years.

          (l)  "Person" means an individual, corporation, organization or other legal entity.

          (m)  "Personal representative" means an executor, administrator, successor personal representative or special administrator of a decedent's estate or a person legally authorized to perform substantially the same functions.

          (n)  "State" includes any state of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and any territory or possession subject to the legislative authority of the United States.

          (o)  "Transfer" means a transaction that creates custodial property under Section 91-20-19.

          (p)  "Transferor" means a person who makes a transfer under this chapter.

          (q)  "Trust company" means a financial institution, corporation or other legal entity authorized to exercise general trust powers.

     SECTION 17.  Section 91-20-41, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     91-20-41.  The custodian shall transfer in an appropriate manner the custodial property to the minor or to the minor's estate upon the earlier of:

 * * *  (a)  The minor's attainment of twenty‑one (21) years of age with respect to custodial property transferred under Section 91‑20‑9 or 91‑20‑11;

          ( * * *ba)  The minor's attainment of eighteen (18) years of age with respect to custodial property transferred under Section 91-20-9, 91-20-11, 91-20-13 or 91-20-15; or

          ( * * *cb)  The minor's death.

     SECTION 18.  Section 93-1-5, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-1-5.  (1)  Every male who is at least seventeen (17) years old and every female who is at least fifteen (15) years old shall be capable in law of contracting marriage.  However, males and females under the age * * * twenty‑one of eighteen (18) years must furnish the circuit clerk satisfactory evidence of consent to the marriage by the parents or guardians of the parties.  It shall be unlawful for the circuit court clerk to issue a marriage license until the following conditions precedent have been complied with:

          (a)  Application for the license is to be made in writing to the clerk of the circuit court of any county in the State of Mississippi.  The application shall be sworn to by both applicants and shall include:

              (i)  The names, ages and addresses of the parties applying;

              (ii)  The names and addresses of the parents of the applicants, and, for applicants under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18), if no parents, then names and addresses of the guardian or next of kin;

              (iii)  The signatures of witnesses; and

              (iv)  Any other data that may be required by law or the State Board of Health.

          (b)  Proof of age shall be presented to the circuit court clerk in the form of either a birth certificate, baptismal record, armed service discharge, armed service identification card, life insurance policy, insurance certificate, school record, driver's license, or other official document evidencing age.  The document substantiating age and date of birth shall be examined by the circuit court clerk before whom application is made, and the circuit court clerk shall retain in his file with the application the document or a certified or photostatic copy of the document.

          (c)  Applicants under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) must submit affidavits showing the age of both applying parties made by either the father, mother, guardian or next of kin of each of the contracting parties and filed with the clerk of the circuit court along with the application.

          (d)  If the male applicant is under seventeen (17) years of age or the female is under fifteen (15) years of age, and satisfactory proof is furnished to the judge of any circuit, chancery or county court that sufficient reasons exist and that the parties desire to be married to each other and that the parents or other person in loco parentis of the person or persons so under age consent to the marriage, then the judge of any such court in the county where either of the parties resides may waive the minimum age requirement and by written instrument authorize the clerk of the court to issue the marriage license to the parties if they are otherwise qualified by law.  Authorization shall be a part of the confidential files of the clerk of the court, subject to inspection only by written permission of the judge.

          (e)  In no event shall a license be issued by the circuit court clerk when it appears to the circuit court clerk that the applicants are, or either of them is:

              (i)  Intoxicated; or

              (ii)  Suffering from a mental illness or an intellectual disability to the extent that the clerk believes that the person does not understand the nature and consequences of the application for a marriage license.

     (2)  Any circuit clerk shall be liable under his official bond because of noncompliance with the provisions of this section.

     (3)  Any circuit court clerk who issues a marriage license without complying with the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not less than Fifty Dollars ($50.00) and not more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00).

     SECTION 19.  Section 93-9-9, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-9-9.  (1)  Paternity may be determined upon the petition of the mother, or father, the child or any public authority chargeable by law with the support of the child; provided that such an adjudication after the death of the defendant must be made only upon clear and convincing evidence.  If paternity has been lawfully determined, or has been acknowledged in writing according to the laws of this state, the liabilities of the noncustodial parent may be enforced in the same or other proceedings by the custodial parent, the child, or any public authority which has furnished or may furnish the reasonable expenses of pregnancy, confinement, education, necessary support and maintenance, and medical or funeral expenses for the custodial parent or the child.  The trier of fact shall receive without the need for third-party foundation testimony certified, attested or sworn documentation as evidence of (a) childbirth records; (b) cost of filing fees; (c) court costs; (d) services of process fees; (e) mailing cost; (f) genetic tests and testing fees; (g) the department's attorney's fees; (h) in cases where the state or any of its entities or divisions have provided medical services to the child or the child's mother, all costs of prenatal care, birthing, postnatal care and any other medical expenses incurred by the child or by the mother as a consequence of the mother's pregnancy or delivery; and (i) funeral expenses.  All costs and fees shall be ordered paid to the Department of Human Services in all cases successfully prosecuted with a minimum of Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($250.00) in attorney's fees or an amount determined by the court without submitting an affidavit.  Proceedings may be instituted at any time until such child attains the age of * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years unless the child has been emancipated as provided in Section 93-5-23 and Section 93-11-65.  In the event of court-determined paternity, the surname of the child shall be that of the father, unless the judgment specifies otherwise.

     (2)  If the alleged father in an action to determine paternity to which the Department of Human Services is a party fails to appear for a scheduled hearing after having been served with process or subsequent notice consistent with the Rules of Civil Procedure, his paternity of the child(ren) shall be established by the court if a written declaration in support of establishing paternity made under penalty of perjury to the best of her knowledge, information and belief by the mother averring the alleged father's paternity of the child has accompanied the complaint to determine paternity.  The written declaration shall constitute sufficient grounds for the court's finding of the alleged father's paternity without the necessity of the presence or testimony of the mother at the said hearing.  The court shall, upon motion by the Department of Human Services, enter a judgment of paternity.  Any person who shall willfully and knowingly file a false affidavit or who shall willfully, intentionally and knowingly file a false written declaration under penalty of perjury shall be subject to a fine of not more than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00).

     (3)  Upon application of both parents to the State Board of Health and receipt by the State Board of Health of a sworn acknowledgement of paternity executed by both parents subsequent to the birth of a child born out of wedlock, the birth certificate of the child shall be amended to show such paternity if paternity is not shown on the birth certificate.  Upon request of the parents for the legitimization of a child under this section, the surname of the child shall be changed on the certificate to that of the father.

     (4)  (a)  A signed voluntary acknowledgment of paternity is subject to the right of any signatory to rescind the acknowledgment within the earlier of:

              (i)  One (1) year; or

              (ii)  The date of a judicial proceeding relating to the child, including a proceeding to establish a support order, in which the signatory is a party.

          (b)  After the expiration of the one-year period specified in subsection (4)(a)(i) of this section, a signed voluntary acknowledgment of paternity may be challenged in court only on the basis of fraud, duress or material mistake of fact, with the burden of proof upon the challenger; the legal responsibilities, including child support obligations, of any signatory arising from the acknowledgment may not be suspended during the pendency of the challenge, except for good cause shown.

          (c)  During the one-year time period specified in subsection (4)(a)(i) of this section, the alleged father may request genetic testing through the Department of Human Services in accordance with the provisions of Section 93-9-21.

          (d)  The one-year time limit, specified in subsection (4)(a)(i) of this section, for the right of the alleged father to rescind the signed voluntary acknowledgement of paternity shall be tolled from the date the alleged father files his formal application for genetic testing with the Department of Human Services until the date the test results are revealed to the alleged father by the department.  After the one-year time period has expired, not including any period of time tolled for the purpose of acquiring genetic testing through the department, the provisions of subsection (4)(b) of this section shall apply.

     SECTION 20.  Section 93-11-65, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-11-65.  (1)  (a)  In addition to the right to proceed under Section 93-5-23, Mississippi Code of 1972, and in addition to the remedy of habeas corpus in proper cases, and other existing remedies, the chancery court of the proper county shall have jurisdiction to entertain suits for the custody, care, support and maintenance of minor children and to hear and determine all such matters, and shall, if need be, require bond, sureties or other guarantee to secure any order for periodic payments for the maintenance or support of a child.  In the event a legally responsible parent has health insurance available to him or her through an employer or organization that may extend benefits to the dependents of such parent, any order of support issued against such parent may require him or her to exercise the option of additional coverage in favor of such children as he or she is legally responsible to support.  Proceedings may be brought by or against a resident or nonresident of the State of Mississippi, whether or not having the actual custody of minor children, for the purpose of judicially determining the legal custody of a child.  All actions herein authorized may be brought in the county where the child is actually residing, or in the county of the residence of the party who has actual custody, or of the residence of the defendant.  Process shall be had upon the parties as provided by law for process in person or by publication, if they be nonresidents of the state or residents of another jurisdiction or are not found therein after diligent search and inquiry or are unknown after diligent search and inquiry; provided that the court or chancellor in vacation may fix a date in termtime or in vacation to which process may be returnable and shall have power to proceed in termtime or vacation.  Provided, however, that if the court shall find that both parties are fit and proper persons to have custody of the children, and that either party is able to adequately provide for the care and maintenance of the children, the chancellor may consider the preference of a child of twelve (12) years of age or older as to the parent with whom the child would prefer to live in determining what would be in the best interest and welfare of the child.  The chancellor shall place on the record the reason or reasons for which the award of custody was made and explain in detail why the wishes of any child were or were not honored.

          (b)  An order of child support shall specify the sum to be paid weekly or otherwise.  In addition to providing for support and education, the order shall also provide for the support of the child prior to the making of the order for child support, and such other expenses as the court may deem proper.

          (c)  The court may require the payment to be made to the custodial parent, or to some person or corporation to be designated by the court as trustee, but if the child or custodial parent is receiving public assistance, the Department of Human Services shall be made the trustee.

          (d)  The noncustodial parent's liabilities for past education and necessary support and maintenance and other expenses are limited to a period of one (1) year next preceding the commencement of an action.

     (2)  Provided further, that where the proof shows that both parents have separate incomes or estates, the court may require that each parent contribute to the support and maintenance of the children in proportion to the relative financial ability of each.

     (3)  Whenever the court has ordered a party to make periodic payments for the maintenance or support of a child, but no bond, sureties or other guarantee has been required to secure such payments, and whenever such payments as have become due remain unpaid for a period of at least thirty (30) days, the court may, upon petition of the person to whom such payments are owing, or such person's legal representative, enter an order requiring that bond, sureties or other security be given by the person obligated to make such payments, the amount and sufficiency of which shall be approved by the court.  The obligor shall, as in other civil actions, be served with process and shall be entitled to a hearing in such case.

     (4)  When a charge of abuse or neglect of a child first arises in the course of a custody or maintenance action pending in the chancery court pursuant to this section, the chancery court may proceed with the investigation, hearing and determination of such abuse or neglect charge as a part of its hearing and determination of the custody or maintenance issue as between the parents, as provided in Section 43-21-151, notwithstanding the other provisions of the Youth Court Law.  The proceedings in chancery court on the abuse or neglect charge shall be confidential in the same manner as provided in youth court proceedings, and the chancery court shall appoint a guardian ad litem in such cases, as provided under Section 43-21-121 for youth court proceedings, who shall be an attorney.  In determining whether any portion of a guardian ad litem's fee shall be assessed against any party or parties as a cost of court for reimbursement to the county, the court shall consider each party's individual ability to pay.  Unless the chancery court's jurisdiction has been terminated, all disposition orders in such cases for placement with the Department of Human Services shall be reviewed by the court or designated authority at least annually to determine if continued placement with the department is in the best interest of the child or the public.

     (5)  Each party to a paternity or child support proceeding shall notify the other within five (5) days after any change of address.  In addition, the noncustodial and custodial parent shall file and update, with the court and with the state case registry, information on that party's location and identity, including social security number, residential and mailing addresses, telephone numbers, photograph, driver's license number, and name, address and telephone number of the party's employer.  This information shall be required upon entry of an order or within five (5) days of a change of address.

     (6)  In any case subsequently enforced by the Department of Human Services pursuant to Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, the court shall have continuing jurisdiction.

     (7)  In any subsequent child support enforcement action between the parties, upon sufficient showing that diligent effort has been made to ascertain the location of a party, due process requirements for notice and service of process shall be deemed to be met with respect to the party upon delivery of written notice to the most recent residential or employer address filed with the state case registry.

     (8)  (a)  The duty of support of a child terminates upon the emancipation of the child.  Unless otherwise provided for in the underlying child support judgment, emancipation shall occur when the child:

              (i)  Attains the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years as long as the child is no longer attending high school, or

              (ii)  Marries, or

              (iii)  Joins the military and serves on a full-time basis, or

              (iv)  Is convicted of a felony and is sentenced to incarceration of two (2) or more years for committing such felony; * * * or

          (b)  Unless otherwise provided for in the underlying child support judgment, the court may determine that emancipation has occurred and no other support obligation exists when the child:

              (i)  Discontinues full-time enrollment in school having attained the age of eighteen (18) years, unless the child is disabled, or

              (ii)  Voluntarily moves from the home of the custodial parent or guardian, establishes independent living arrangements, obtains full-time employment and discontinues educational endeavors prior to attaining the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years, or

              (iii)  Cohabits with another person without the approval of the parent obligated to pay support; * * * and

          (c)  The duty of support of a child who is incarcerated but not emancipated shall be suspended for the period of the child's incarceration.

     (9)  A determination of emancipation does not terminate any obligation of the noncustodial parent to satisfy arrearage existing as of the date of emancipation; the total amount of periodic support due prior to the emancipation plus any periodic amounts ordered paid toward the arrearage shall continue to be owed until satisfaction of the arrearage in full, in addition to the right of the person for whom the obligation is owed to execute for collection as may be provided by law.

     (10)  Upon motion of a party requesting temporary child support pending a determination of parentage, temporary support shall be ordered if there is clear and convincing evidence of paternity on the basis of genetic tests or other evidence, unless the court makes written findings of fact on the record that the award of temporary support would be unjust or inappropriate in a particular case.

     (11)  Custody and visitation upon military temporary duty, deployment or mobilization shall be governed by Section 93-5-34.

     SECTION 21.  Section 93-14-102, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-14-102.  In this chapter:

          (1)  "Adult" means an individual who has attained * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age as long as the individual is no longer attending high school.

          (2)  "Conservator" means a person appointed by the court to administer the property of an adult, including a person appointed under Article 4 of Title 93, Chapter 20, Mississippi Code of 1972.

          (3)  "Guardian" means a person appointed by the court to make decisions regarding the person of an adult, including a person appointed under Article 2 or 3 of Chapter 20, Title 93.

          (4)  "Guardianship order" means an order appointing a guardian.

          (5)  "Guardianship proceeding" means a judicial proceeding in which an order for the appointment of a guardian is sought or has been issued.

          (6)  "Incapacitated person" means an adult for whom a guardian has been appointed.

          (7)  "Party" means the respondent, petitioner, guardian, conservator, or any other person allowed by the court to participate in a guardianship or protective proceeding.

          (8)  "Person," except in the term incapacitated person or protected person, means an individual, corporation, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, public corporation, government or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality, or any other legal or commercial entity.

          (9)  "Protected person" means an adult for whom a protective order has been issued.

          (10)  "Protective order" means an order appointing a conservator or other order related to management of an adult's property.

          (11)  "Protective proceeding" means a judicial proceeding in which a protective order is sought or has been issued.

          (12)  "Record" means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in perceivable form.

          (13)  "Respondent" means an adult for whom a protective order or the appointment of a guardian is sought.

          (14)  "State" means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, a federally recognized Indian tribe, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

     SECTION 22.  Section 93-15-103, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-15-103.  For purposes of this chapter, unless a different meaning is plainly expressed by the context, the following definitions apply:

          (a)  "Abandonment" means any conduct by the parent, whether consisting of a single incident or actions over an extended period of time, that evinces a settled purpose to relinquish all parental claims and responsibilities to the child.  Abandonment may be established by showing:

              (i)  For a child who is under three (3) years of age on the date that the petition for termination of parental rights was filed, that the parent has deliberately made no contact with the child for six (6) months;

              (ii)  For a child who is three (3) years of age or older on the date that the petition for termination of parental rights was filed, that the parent has deliberately made no contact with the child for at least one (1) year; or

              (iii)  If the child is under six (6) years of age, that the parent has exposed the child in any highway, street, field, outhouse, or elsewhere with the intent to wholly abandon the child.

          (b)  "Child" means a person under eighteen (18) years of age.

          (c)  "Court" means the court having jurisdiction under the Mississippi Termination of Parental Rights Law.

          (d)  "Desertion" means:

              (i)  Any conduct by the parent over an extended period of time that demonstrates a willful neglect or refusal to provide for the support and maintenance of the child; or

              (ii)  That the parent has not demonstrated, within a reasonable period of time after the birth of the child, a full commitment to the responsibilities of parenthood.

          (e)  "Home" means any charitable or religious corporation or organization or the superintendent or head of the charitable or religious corporation or organization organized under the laws of the State of Mississippi, any public authority to which has been granted the power to provide care for or procure the adoption of children by any Mississippi statute, and any association or institution engaged in placing children for adoption on July 1, 1955.

          (f)  "Interested person" means any person related to the child by consanguinity or affinity, a custodian or legal guardian of the child, a guardian ad litem representing the child's best interests, or an attorney representing the child's preferences under Rule 13 of the Uniform Rules of Youth Court Practice.

          (g)  "Minor parent" means any parent under * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age.

          (h)  "Parent" means a natural or adoptive parent of the child.

          (i)  "Permanency outcome" means achieving a permanent or long-term custodial arrangement for the custody and care of the child that ends the supervision of the Department of Child Protection Services.

          (j)  "Qualified health professional" means a licensed or certified professional who is engaged in the delivery of health services and who meets all applicable federal or state requirements to provide professional services.

          (k)  "Qualified mental health professional" means a person with at least a master's degree in mental health or a related field and who has either a professional license or a Department of Mental Health credential as a mental health therapist.

          (l)  "Reunification" means the restoration of the parent's custodial rights in providing for the safety and welfare of the child which ends the supervision of the Department of Child Protection Services.

     SECTION 23.  Section 93-17-5, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-17-5.  (1)  There shall be made parties to the proceeding by process or by the filing therein of a consent to the adoption proposed in the petition, which consent shall be duly sworn to or acknowledged and executed only by the following persons, but not before seventy-two (72) hours after the birth of the child:

          (a)  The parents, or parent, if only one (1) parent, though either be under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years;

          (b)  If both parents are dead, then any two (2) adult kin of the child within the third degree computed according to the civil law; if one of such kin is in possession of the child, he or she shall join in the petition or be made a party to the suit; or

          (c)  The guardian ad litem of an abandoned child, upon petition showing that the names of the parents of the child are unknown after diligent search and inquiry by the petitioners.  In addition to the above, there shall be made parties to any proceeding to adopt a child, either by process or by the filing of a consent to the adoption proposed in the petition, the following:

              (i)  Those persons having physical custody of the child, except persons who are acting as foster parents as a result of placement with them by the Department of Human Services of the State of Mississippi.

              (ii)  Any person to whom custody of the child may have been awarded by a court of competent jurisdiction of the State of Mississippi.

              (iii)  The agent of the county Department of Human Services of the State of Mississippi that has placed a child in foster care, either by agreement or by court order.

     (2)  The consent may also be executed and filed by the duly authorized officer or representative of a home to whose care the child has been delivered.  The child shall join the petition by the child's next friend.

     (3)  If consent is not filed, process shall be had upon the parties as provided by law for process in person or by publication, if they are nonresidents of the state or are not found therein after diligent search and inquiry, the court or chancellor in vacation may fix a date in termtime or in vacation to which process may be returnable and shall have power to proceed in termtime or vacation.  In any event, if the child is more than fourteen (14) years of age, a consent to the adoption, sworn to or acknowledged by the child, shall also be required or personal service of process shall be had upon the child in the same manner and in the same effect as if the child were an adult.

     SECTION 24.  Section 93-17-205, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-17-205.  (1)  The bureau shall maintain a centralized adoption records file for all adoptions performed in this state after July 1, 2005, which shall contain the following information:

          (a)  The medical and social history of the birth parents, including information regarding genetically inheritable diseases or illnesses and any similar information furnished by the birth parents about the adoptee's grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters if known;

          (b)  A report of any medical examination which either birth parent had within one (1) year before the date of the petition for adoption, if available and known;

          (c)  A report describing the adoptee's prenatal care and medical condition at birth, if available and known;

          (d)  The medical and social history of the adoptee, including information regarding genetically inheritable diseases or illnesses, and any other relevant medical, social and genetic information if available; and

          (e)  Forms 100A, 100B (if applicable) and evidence of Interstate Compact for Placement of Children approval (if applicable).

     The Administrative Office of Courts shall assist the bureau in the maintenance of its centralized adoption record by compiling the number of finalized adoptions in each chancery court district on a monthly basis, and submitting this information to the bureau.  The bureau shall include these statistics in its centralized adoption record.  The information in this report shall include the number of adoptions in this state where the adopting parent is a blood relative of the adoptee and the number of adoptions in this state where the adopting parent is not a blood relative of the adoptee.  The report shall not include any individual identifying information.  This information shall be updated annually and made available to the public upon request for a reasonable fee.

     (2)  Any birth parent may file with the bureau at any time any relevant supplemental nonidentifying information about the adoptee or the adoptee's birth parents, and the bureau shall maintain this information in the centralized adoption records file.

     (3)  The bureau shall also maintain as part of the centralized adoption records file the following:

          (a)  The name, date of birth, social security number (both original and revised, where applicable) and birth certificate (both original and revised) of the adoptee;

          (b)  The names, current addresses and social security numbers of the adoptee's birth parents, guardian and legal custodian;

          (c)  Any other available information about the birth parent's identity and location.

     (4)  Any birth parent may file with the bureau at any time an affidavit authorizing the bureau to provide the adoptee with his or her original birth certificate and with any other available information about the birth parent's identity and location, or an affidavit expressly prohibiting the bureau from providing the adoptee with any information about such birth parent's identity and location, and prohibiting any licensed adoption agency from conducting a search for such birth parent under the terms of Sections 93-17-201 through 93-17-223.  An affidavit filed under this section may be revoked at any time by written notification to the bureau from the birth parent.

     (5)  Counsel for the adoptive parents in the adoption finalization proceeding shall provide the bureau with the information required in subsections (1) and (3) of this section, and he shall also make such information a part of the adoption records of the court in which the final decree of adoption is rendered.  This information shall be provided on forms prepared by the bureau.

     (6)  (a)  If an agency receives a report from a physician stating that a birth parent or another child of the birth parent has acquired or may have a genetically transferable disease or illness, the agency shall notify the bureau and the appropriate licensed adoption agency, and the latter agency shall notify the adoptee of the existence of the disease or illness, if he or she is * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age or over, or notify the adoptee's guardian, custodian or adoptive parent if the adoptee is under age * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18).

          (b)  If an agency receives a report from a physician that an adoptee has acquired or may have a genetically transferable disease or illness, the agency shall notify the bureau and the appropriate licensed agency, and the latter agency shall notify the adoptee's birth parent of the existence of the disease or illness.

     (7)  Compliance with the provisions of this section may be waived by the court, in its discretion, in any chancery court proceeding in which one or more of the petitioners for adoption is the natural mother or father of the adoptee.

     SECTION 25.  Section 93-17-215, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-17-215.  Any person * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age or over who has been adopted in this state may request the bureau through a licensed adoption agency providing post-adoption services to obtain and provide the identifying information regarding either or both of his or her birth parents maintained as provided in Section 93-17-205, unless that birth parent has executed an affidavit prohibiting the release of such information.

     SECTION 26.  Section 93-19-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-19-1.  The chancery court of the county in which a minor resides, or the chancery court of a county in which a resident minor owns real estate in matters pertaining to such real estate, may remove the disability of minority of such minor.  In cases of married minors, the residence of the husband shall be the residence of the parties.  The chancery court of a county in which a nonresident minor of the State of Mississippi owns real estate or any interest in real estate may remove the disability of minority of such minor as to such real estate, so as to enable said minor to do and perform all acts with reference to such real estate, to sell and convey, to mortgage, to lease, and to make deeds of trust and contracts, including promissory notes, concerning said real estate, or any interest therein which may be owned by such minor, as fully and effectively as if said minor were * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) years of age.  The jurisdiction thus exercised shall be that of a court of general equity jurisdiction, and all presumptions in favor of that adjudged shall be accorded at all times.

     SECTION 27.  Section 93-19-9, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-19-9.  The decree may be for the partial removal of the disability of the minor so as to enable him to do some particular act proposed to be done and specified in the decree; or it may be general, and empower him to do all acts in reference to his property, and making contracts, and suing and being sued, and engaging in any profession or avocation, which he could do if he were * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age; and the decree made shall distinctly specify to what extent the disability of the minor is removed, and what character of acts he is empowered to perform notwithstanding his minority, and may impose such restrictions and qualifications as the court may adjudge proper.

     SECTION 28.  Section 93-20-102, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     93-20-102.  In this chapter:

          (a)  "Adult" means an individual at least * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age or an emancipated individual under * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age.

          (b)  "Claim" includes a claim against an individual or conservatorship estate, whether arising in contract, tort, or otherwise.

          (c)  "Conservator" means a person appointed by a court to make decisions with respect to the property or financial affairs of a ward.  The term includes a co-conservator.

          (d)  "Conservatorship estate" means the property subject to conservatorship under this chapter.

          (e)  "Full conservatorship" means a conservatorship that grants the conservator all powers available under this chapter.

          (f)  "Full guardianship" means a guardianship that grants the guardian all powers available under this chapter.

          (g)  "Guardian" means a person appointed by the court to make decisions with respect to the personal affairs of the ward.  The term includes a co-guardian but does not include a guardian ad litem.

          (h)  "Guardian ad litem" means a qualified person appointed by the court to inform the court about the ward, to protect the best interests of the ward, and to make recommendations to the court in the best interests of the ward.

          (i)  "Less restrictive alternative" means an approach to meeting an individual's needs which restricts fewer rights of the individual than would the appointment of a guardian or conservator in the discretion of the court.

          (j)  "Letters of guardianship or conservatorship" means a record issued by a court certifying a guardian's or conservator's authority to act.

          (k)  "Limited conservatorship" means a conservatorship that grants the conservator less than all powers available under this chapter, grants powers over only certain property, or otherwise restricts the powers of the conservator.

          (l)  "Limited guardianship" means a guardianship that grants the guardian less than all powers available under this chapter or otherwise restricts the powers of the guardian.

          (m)  "Minor" means an unemancipated individual under * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) years of age.

          (n)  "Notice" means any notice as provided by Rule 5 of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.

          (o)  "Parent" does not include an individual whose parental rights have been terminated.

          (p)  "Person" means an individual, estate, business or nonprofit entity, public corporation, government or governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality, or other legal entity.

          (q)  "Property" includes tangible and intangible property.

          (r)  "Record," used as a noun, means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in perceivable form.

          (s)  "Respondent" means an individual for whom appointment of a guardian or conservator is sought.

          (t)  "Sign" means, with present intent to authenticate or adopt a record:

              (i)  To execute or adopt a tangible symbol; or

              (ii)  To attach to or logically associate with the record an electronic symbol, sound, or process.

          (u)  "State" means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.  The term includes a federally recognized Indian tribe.

          (v)  "Summons" means any properly issued summons as provided by the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.

          (w)  "Ward" means an adult or minor for whom a guardian or conservator has been appointed under this chapter.

     SECTION 29.  Section 97-33-23, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     97-33-23.  Any person of full age who shall bet any money or thing of value with a minor, knowing such minor to be under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18), or allowing any such minor to bet at any game or games, or at any gaming table exhibited by him, or in which he is interested or in any manner concerned, on conviction thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment in the Penitentiary not exceeding two (2) years.

     This section shall apply to minors under the age of * * * twenty‑one eighteen (18) as it might apply to the operation of any game or lottery authorized by Chapter 115, Title 27.

     SECTION 30.  Section 99-3-45, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:

     99-3-45.  A person under the age of * * * twenty‑one (21) eighteen (18) who is released under either Section 99-3-17 or 99-3-18 following arrest must be given notice:

          (a)  That the person is allowed to call a parent, guardian or custodian in addition to any other opportunity to call that has been afforded to such person; and

          (b)  That Intervention Court and other pretrial diversion programs may be available for many offenses.

     SECTION 31.  Section 35-7-43, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for the removal of the disabilities of minority of certain veterans, is repealed.

     SECTION 32.  Section 91-7-37, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for the removal of the disabilities of minority for certain executors, executrixes, administrators or administratrixes, is repealed.

     SECTION 33.  Section 93-3-11, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides for the removal of disabilities of minority of certain married persons with respect to homestead transactions, is repealed.

     SECTION 34.  Section 93-19-13, Mississippi Code of 1972, which provides that all persons eighteen (18) years of age or older, if not otherwise disqualified, shall have the capacity to enter into binding contractual relationships affecting personal property and that an eighteen-year-old may sue in his own name as an adult and be sued in his own name as an adult and be served with process as an adult, is repealed.

     SECTION 35.  This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2023, and shall stand repealed on June 30, 2023.


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