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PLANT v. CITY OF DeKALB

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois


November 23, 2004.

PLANT
v.
CITY OF DEKALB.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: JAMES ZAGEL, District Judge

Plaintiff Rodger Plant filed a pro se complaint against Defendant City of DeKalb in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. During a hearing on November 16, 2004, Defendant challenged venue as improper, arguing that the case should have been filed in the Western Division of the Northern District of Illinois. Plaintiff (now represented by counsel) requests that this court retain jurisdiction for his convenience.

Plaintiff's suit alleges discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 1981 and 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Neither party argues that venue is improper in the Northern District of Illinois. Rather, Defendant seeks an intra-district transfer from the Eastern Division to the Western Division. The local rules of this district do not contain a divisional venue requirement. Hogan v. Ford New Holland, Inc., 1995 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8269, at *15 (N.D. Ill. June 14, 1995); see also I&M Rail Link v. Northstar Navigation, 21 F. Supp. 2d 849, 858 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 21, 1998). Therefore, both divisions within this district provide an appropriate venue for this case. Hogan, 1995 U.S. Dist. LEXIS at *15.

Given that venue is proper in the Eastern Division, Defendant's motion must be considered a motion to transfer venue under § 1404(a). Intra-district motions to transfer pursuant to § 1404(a) are governed by the same criteria as inter-district motions to transfer. See Cody v. DeKalb Sanitary Dist., 1999 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9211 at *4 (N.D. Ill. June 10, 1999). Defendant must demonstrate that transfer would be for the convenience of the parties and witnesses and in the interests of justice. Id. During its brief court appearance, Defendant did not meet this burden. However, if Defendant wishes to pursue its motion to transfer, it may do so in writing, addressing the factors noted above. Until then, Defendant's oral motion is entered and continued.

20041123

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