Jewel Am., Inc. v. Combine Int’l., Inc., No. 07 C 3596, 2007 WL 4300589 (N.D. Ill. Nov. 30, 2007) (Guzman, J.).
Judge Guzman denied defendants’ 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) motion to transfer this copyright case to the Eastern District of Michigan. Plaintiff argued that its choice of forum should be given deference because its relevant subsidiary was an Illinois entity with its place of business and all of its operations in Illinois. But the Court looked to the residence of the named plaintiff, not the plaintiff’s subsidiary. Because the named plaintiff was a New York entity, plaintiff’s chosen forum was not given deference. Further, the situs of material events was Michigan. Defendants were Michigan entities and the alleged infringement and related planning occurred in Michigan. The Court discounted the location of documents because, “[i]n this age of faxing, scanning and overnight courier services, however, the location of documentary evidence is largely irrelevant.”
No party identified a third party witness that would be required to testify. And convenience of the parties tipped slightly to plaintiff whose subsidiary’s business would be disrupted if its main employees and key witnesses had to travel from Illinois to Michigan for court proceedings and depositions. Based upon these factors, the Court held that defendants had not shown that the Eastern District of Michigan was clearly more convenient and denied the motion.