Daytona Beach Personal Injury Lawyers
Free Consultations 386.258.1622

Florida Fourth DCA rules that trial court abused its discretion in denying a motion to change venue in a motor vehicle negligence case where the only connection to the county in which the action was filed was that that a non-resident corporation defendant had an agent for service there

On July 14, 2021, in Eagle Transport Corporation of North Carolina, et al. v. Roch-Hernandez, No. 4D20-2663, the Florida Fourth DCA reversed a trial court ruling which had denied the defendants’ requested venue transfer from Broward to Alachua County in a motor vehicle negligence wrongful death case. The accident occurred in Alachua County and the decedent lived in Alachua County at the time of the accident. None of the defendants lived in either Broward or Alachua County and the defendants’ only connection to Broward County was that the defendant trucking company had a registered agent and a fueling hub in the county. The Fourth DCA concluded that the trial court erred in denying the motion to transfer, citing ATP Tour, Inc. v. Skoff, 758 So. 2d 1226, 1228 (Fla. 4th DCA 2000) (“Our court has held that a trial court abuses its discretion if it denies a motion to change venue where the only connection to the county in which the action is filed is that a non-resident corporation had an agent for service there.”); Avis Rent A Car Sys., Inc. v. Broughton, 672 So. 2d 656, 656 (Fla. 4th DCA 1996) (same); Morrill v. Lytle, 893 So. 2d 671, 673 (Fla. 1st DCA 2005) (trial court abused its discretion in denying motion to transfer venue from Duval County to Alachua County where accident occurred in Alachua County, witnesses were located in Alachua County, and only connection to Duval County was that corporate defendants maintained offices in Duval County and certain attorneys involved in the case practiced in Duval County).

Categories: