Legislature allows Georgians to challenge laws in court

April 2, 2019 Atlanta - Rep. Spencer Frye (center) and other  members of the House vote on SB 200, relating to exercise of power to contract by the Georgia Department of Transportation, in the House Chambers during the last day of legislation  at the Georgia State Capitol on Tuesday, April 2, 2019.  HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

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April 2, 2019 Atlanta - Rep. Spencer Frye (center) and other members of the House vote on SB 200, relating to exercise of power to contract by the Georgia Department of Transportation, in the House Chambers during the last day of legislation at the Georgia State Capitol on Tuesday, April 2, 2019. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

The Georgia House unanimously approved a bill Tuesday that allows residents to sue over laws they believe are unconstitutional.

The 166-0 vote sends House Bill 311 to Gov. Brian Kemp for his signature or veto.

The legislation permits lawsuits over statutes that may have gone too far, and it gives judges the authority to halt those laws. The bill bars monetary relief.

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ExplorePhotos: Sine Die at the Georgia legislature

Georgians lost the ability to use the courts to stop illegal government actions in 2017, when the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that citizens couldn't sue without the government's permission. 

The legislation gives that permission by granting a limited waiver to the legal doctrine of sovereign immunity.