Judge Primeaux will retire March 31

February 27, 2023

Chancellor Lawrence Primeaux of Meridian has announced that he will retire on March 31.

Chancellor Lawrence Primeaux of Meridian has announced that he will retire on March 31

He said that his wife’s health is the reason that he will leave office before the end of the term. Judge Primeaux has been married to Lisa M. Primeaux, a retired registered nurse, for 51 years. They have three children and two grandchildren.

The Governor is expected to appoint a judge to the vacancy, with the appointee to serve until January 2025. A special election is expected to be scheduled in November 2024, with the person elected to take office in January 2025.

Judge Primeaux, 73, has served for 16 years as one of two chancellors of the 12th Chancery Court. He took office on Jan. 2, 2007. The 12th Chancery District includes Lauderdale and Clarke counties.

Judge Primeaux served as chair of the Conference of Chancery Judges 2018-2019. He also served a term as vice-chair of the conference. He was a member of the Mississippi Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Rules 2010-2022. He was a member of the Mississippi Commission on Guardianships and Conservatorships, which proposed legislation that the Mississippi Legislature adopted in 2019 as the GAP Act, for “guard and protect.”

He published the award-winning Better Chancery Practice Blog for 10 years. Editors of the ABA Journal in 2016 selected the publication as one of the nation's 100 best blogs for a legal audience. Judge Primeaux stopped publishing his weekly legal analysis in June 2020, but the blog, still available online, remains a highly regarded source of information about family law practice.

Judge Primeaux practiced law for 33 years before being elected to the bench. He practiced law for two years in Memphis, then worked as an appeals officer for the U.S. Civil Service Commission in Atlanta for four years. He was managing attorney for the former East Mississippi Legal Services office 1978-1981. He began his private law practice in Meridian in 1981. He served as attorney for the city of Meridian, the Meridian Civil Service Commission, the Meridian Airport Authority and the Meridian Transportation Commission.

He is a former president of the Lauderdale County Bar Association and former chairman of the State Charity Hospital Board. He served on the East Mississippi State Hospital Community Advisory Committee, and on the boards of directors of the Lauderdale County Group Home, St. Fancis Homes Inc., and Friendship Center. He is former president of United Way of Lauderdale County and of the Mental Health Association of Lauderdale County. He is a former director of the Meridian Rotary Club. He was a member of the East Mississippi Business Development Corporation and of the Navy League of Meridian.

He has been a member of the Episcopal Church of the Mediator, where he sang in the choir. He is a former senior warden, and has held various other leadership positions. He served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi.

The Abbeville, La., native attended the University of Southwestern Louisiana and Nicholls State University. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology, sociology and anthropology from the University of Mississippi in 1971, and a law degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law in 1973.