United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
LINDA LAWSON-KENNEDY, individually and on behalf of the Estate of Katherine Lawson Plaintiff,
CORINTH HEALTH CARE LLC d/b/a CORINTH REHABILITATION SUITES ON THE PARKWAY, Defendant.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
J. BOYLE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is Defendant Corinth Health Care LLC d/b/a Corinth
Rehabilitation Suites on the Parkway's Motion to Transfer
Venue. Doc. 9. For the reasons that follow, Defendant's
Motion is GRANTED, and the case is TRANSFERRED to the United
States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas,
a medical negligence case stemming from Defendant's care
of decedent Katherine Lawson while she was a resident at
Corinth Rehabilitation Suites on the Parkway. Doc. 1-2,
Pl.'s Orig. Pet. ¶¶ 9, 19-27. Plaintiff
originally filed the suit in the 362nd Judicial District
Court in Denton County, Texas. Doc. 1, Notice of Removal
¶ 2. Defendant then removed the case to the United
States District Court for the Northern District of Texas,
Dallas Division. Id.
Defendant filed an Answer, the Court ordered the parties to
confer and submit a Joint Status Report. Doc. 5, Status
Report Order. In their Report, the parties indicated that
they planned on filing an agreed motion to transfer venue
because Defendant's Notice of Removal was inadvertently
filed in the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division
rather than the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division.
Doc. 6, Joint Status Report ¶ 3. Based on this
representation, the Court gave the parties a deadline to file
a motion to transfer venue. Doc. 7, Order. Defendant then
filed its Motion to Transfer Venue within the deadline and
requested that the Court transfer the case to the Eastern
District of Texas, Sherman Division. Doc. 9, Def.'s Mot.
to Transfer Venue ¶ 2. The Motion, however, was not
styled as an “agreed” or “joint”
motion as parties indicated that it would be in their Report,
and it did not contain a certificate of conference as
required by the Local Civil Rules. Therefore, the Court
considers it to be opposed by Plaintiff. While the Court
considers the Motion to be opposed, Plaintiff did not
respond. The Motion is ripe for the Court's review.
1404(a) provides that “[f]or the convenience of parties
and witnesses, in the interest of justice, a district court
may transfer any civil action to any other district or
division where it might have been brought . . . .” 28
U.S.C. § 1404(a). The movant bears the burden of proving
both that the civil action could have been brought in the
proposed district and that transfer would be for the
convenience of parties and witness, in the interest of
justice. In re Volkswagen of Am., Inc., 545 F.3d
304, 315 (5th Cir. 2008).
in removed cases is governed solely by the removal statute,
28 U.S.C. § 1441(a), not § 1391, the general venue
statute. Republic Capital Dev. Grp., L.L.C. v. A.G. Dev.
Grp., Inc., No. H-05-1714, 2005 WL 3465728, at *8 (S.D.
Tex. Dec. 19, 2005) (citing Polizzi v. Cowles Magazines,
Inc., 345 U.S. 663, 665 (1953)). The removal statute
provides that a “civil action brought in a State court
of which the district courts of the United States have
original jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant or the
defendants, to the district court of the United States for
the district and division embracing the place where such
action is pending.” 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a).
demonstrate that transfer would be for “the convenience
of parties and witnesses, in the interest of justice”
under 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a), a movant must show good
cause. In re Volkswagen, 545 F.3d at 315 (citing
Humble Oil & Ref. Co. v. Bell Marine Serv.,
Inc., 321 F.2d 53, 56 (5th Cir. 1963)). To determine
whether a movant has shown good cause, courts examine a
number of private and public interest factors. In re
Volkswagen, 545 F.3d at 315 (citing Gulf Oil Corp.
v. Gilbert, 330 U.S. 501 (1947)). “The private
interest factors are: ‘(1) the relative ease of access
to sources of proof; (2) the availability of compulsory
process to secure the attendance of witnesses; (3) the cost
of attendance for willing witnesses; and (4) all other
practical problems that make trial of a case easy,
expeditious and inexpensive.'” Id.
(quoting In re Volkswagen AG, 371 F.3d 201, 203 (5th
Cir. 2004)). The public interest factors include: “(1)
the administrative difficulties flowing from court
congestion; (2) the local interest in having localized
interests decided at home; (3) the familiarity of the forum
with the law that will govern the case; and (4) the avoidance
of unnecessary problems of conflict of laws [or in] the
application of foreign law.” Id. “When
the transferee forum is no more convenient than the chosen
forum, the plaintiff's choice should not be
disturbed.” Thomas v. City of Fort Worth, No.
3:07-cv-1689-O, 2008 WL 4225556, at * 2 (N.D. Tex. Sept. 15,
2008); see also In re Volkswagen, 545 F.3d at 315.
order to rule on Defendant's Motion, the Court must make
the following two determinations: (1) whether the Eastern
District of Texas, Sherman Division is a proper venue; and
(2) whether transfer would be for the ...