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Why Venue is Important to Your Personal Injury Lawsuit

Posted on in Personal Injury
By Patrick Giese

personal injury lawsuit, Chicago personal injury attorneyMany online articles focus on the substance of the law: identifying the elements of a particular cause of action or describing how a certain legal defense operates. As important as this information is, there is a factor more basic and fundamental to every lawsuit that can have a profound impact on your lawsuit’s chance of success: the place where you choose to file your lawsuit. In other words, the specific court you choose to hear your personal injury lawsuit (called the “venue”) can have as significant of an impact on your lawsuit’s chances for success as can choosing the right witnesses and making sure you have sufficient evidence to prove the claims of your lawsuit.

What is Venue? 

“Venue” describes what court or courts would be most appropriate to hear a particular lawsuit. Although venue is a concept closely related to jurisdiction and the two are often discussed in conjunction with one another, venue is different from jurisdiction (which discusses what court has the power to hear a particular case). It is not uncommon for multiple courts to have venue as a court may be considered an appropriate place to hear a particular dispute if:

  • The plaintiff and/or the defendant live in the area of the court (i.e., in a particular county);
  • It is the location of the accident or dispute; or
  • The specific court has some connection to the accident or dispute.

How Venue Can Affect Your Lawsuit 

A recent news story reported that Madison County, Illinois and the state of Missouri are considered “judicial hellholes” according to a Harris Poll survey. This reflects the opinions of some who believe one party or the other to a lawsuit might not get treated fairly or equally by the courts of that jurisdiction. Choosing a venue that is not advantageous to you can mean:

  • Courts may be more inclined to rule against you in certain pretrial motions; and
  • Jurors in that area may have certain predispositions toward your particular type of lawsuit.

How To Choose the Right Venue for Your Lawsuit

Choosing the correct venue in which to file your lawsuit takes some research and insight. After determining the choices of venue that are available, a party can then examine specific information from each venue such as: the number of cases similar to the party’s that the venue has heard (and the outcomes of these cases) and the demographics of the area.

Someone with little or no experience should not choose the venue. The skilled Chicago personal injury attorneys at Tomasik Kotin Kasserman, LLC have helped numerous clients throughout Illinois bring successful personal injury actions against those whose negligence has caused injury. We are committed to doing everything possible to increase your case’s chances for success – including choosing the most appropriate venue for your case. Contact us today at (312) 605-8800 and have one of our skilled attorneys review your case.

  Sources:

http://stlouis.cbslocal.com/2015/09/11/mo-and-ill-courts-ranked-poorly-in-national-survey/

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073500050HArt%2E+II+Pt%2E+1&ActID=2017&ChapterID=56&SeqStart=1200000&SeqEnd=2200000

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