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Advance Products & Systems Inc. v. C C I Piping Systems LLC

United States District Court, Western District of Louisiana, Lake Charles Division

March 3, 2015

ADVANCE PRODUCTS & SYSTEMS INC
v.
C C I PIPING SYSTEMS LLC

MINALDI JUDGE

MEMORANDUM RULING

MAGISTRATE JUDGE KAY

Before the Court is a Motion for Intra-District Transfer of Venue filed by the defendant, CCI Piping Systems, LLC (hereinafter "CCI" or "defendant"). The motion is opposed by the plaintiff, Advance Products & Systems, Inc. (hereinafter "APS" or "plaintiff"). For the reasons set forth below, CCI's motion is hereby DENIED.

I.

FACTS & PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Both APS and CCI are engaged in the business of manufacturing and selling casing spacers in Lafayette, Louisiana. Doc. 18, p. 1. This is a patent infringement case brought by APS against CCI on August 8, 2014, seeking monetary damages. The claims are matters of federal law and were therefore brought in this court, the Lake Charles Division of the Western District of Louisiana. See Doc. 1. CCI filed the instant motion on September 19, 2014 therein requesting that this case be transferred to the Lafayette Division of the Western District of Louisiana pursuant to the venue provisions of 28 U.S.C. §1404(a) and (b).

II.

LAW & ANALYSIS

Federal district courts may transfer civil actions between districts or divisions at their discretion so long as it is "[f]or the convenience of the parties and witnesses [and] in the interest of justice[.]" 28 U.S.C. §1404(a). Accordingly, "[t]he §1404(a) factors apply as much to transfers between divisions of the same district as to transfers from one district to another." In re Radmax, Ltd., 720 F.3d 285, 288 (5th Cir. 2013) (citing 17 JAMES WM. MOORE ET AL., MOORE'S FEDERAL PRACTICE § 111.21[2], at 111–154 to 111–155 (3d ed. 2013)); See also Weber v. Coney, 642 F.2d 91, 93 (5th Cir. 1981) (per curiam)).

A motion to transfer venue under §1404(a) should be granted if the movant demonstrates that there is "good cause" to do so. Humble Oil & Refining Co. v. Bell Marine Serv., Inc., 321 F.3d 53, 56 (5th Cir. 1963). "Good cause" requires the moving party to show that the transferee court is clearly more convenient than the plaintiff's original choice under the general venue statute. In re Volkswagen of America, Inc., 545 F.3d 304, 315 (5th Cir. 2008). Because plaintiffs generally have the privilege of filing their claims in any judicial division appropriate under the general venue statute, if the plaintiff complies with the that statute and the suggested transferee court is not clearly more convenient then, "the plaintiff's [initial] choice should be respected…" Id. at 313, 315.

Following the United States Supreme Court's approach in Gulf Oil Corp. v. Gilbert, 330 A. 501 (1947), the Fifth Circuit determines whether a transferee court is "clearly more convenient" by weighing several public and private interest factors. Radmax, 720 F.3d at 288 (citing Volkswagen II, 545 F.3d at 315). These so called " Gilbert " factors may include:
(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 ...

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