At 69 pages, this is a lengthy venue ruling, but covers some important ground including the “regular and established place of business” requirement and the convenience factors – the latter in some detail.
Venue motions are usually filed before the scheduling conference so there’s no mechanism for conducting discovery on them. This order indicates what an appropriate schedule might look like.
The EDTX defendant won the race to the courthouse by a day, filing a dec action in Houston. But the Houston judge dismissed the case in favor of the EDTX action. So what does EDTX do with the first to file/1404 motion to transfer to Houston now?
Same day, same subject, same law, but different facts that led Judge Gilstrap to grant one motion to transfer based on a provision in a prior agreement, but deny the other.
Earlier today Judge Albright denied a motion to transfer a Waco patent case to the Northern District of California, in the process setting out some of the standards he applies on such motions.
Motions to transfer venue asserting inconvenience are less common recently, but this case provides a solid workout for the traditional factors, and indicates which continue to have significance when Section 1404 is asserted, particularly in a competitor case.
Plaintiff sought “targeted venue discovery” based on arguments made by the defendants at a recent hearing on the defendant’s motion for reconsideration of denial of their prior venue motion.
Of all the opinions Judge Hall authored while I clerked for him, Texas Instruments, Inc. v. Micron Semiconductor, Inc., 815 F. Supp. 994, 997 (E.D. Tex. 1993) seems to be the most-cited. While the case dealt with several issues, its central holding, that once the “substantial similarity” test is met, the “first-to-file” rule accords the first-filed court the responsibility to determine which case should proceed, was the part of the opinion cited again by Judge Gilstrap earlier this month in transferring a case.
This question and more are answered in the attached order resolving a motion to dismiss in a pharmaceutical case asserting (1) lack of personal jurisdiction; (2) improper venue; and (3) the first to file rule.
Turns out they have venue fights in Waco as well. Today’s Franklin Avenue update includes an order on the scope of permissible venue discovery.