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Court Discusses When a Change of Venue is Appropriate in New York Medical Malpractice Cases

In any medical malpractice case, while the plaintiff has the discretion to control which venue the case is filed in, the defendant can move for a change of venue if it feels the venue is improper. A New York trial court recently addressed the issue of when a change of venue is appropriate in a neurosurgery malpractice case. If you suffered harm due to inadequate neurosurgical care, it is critical to retain a Rochester neurosurgery malpractice attorney with the knowledge and experience needed to properly handle the procedural aspects of your claim.

Factual and Procedural Background

Reportedly, the plaintiff husband treated with the defendant physicians at the defendant hospital for an ophthalmic aneurysm. Plaintiffs subsequently filed a medical malpractice claim against the defendants in 2013, arising out of harm allegedly caused by care the plaintiff husband received from the defendants. The case was filed in Bronx County, based on the plaintiff wife’s residence. The plaintiffs move to Schenectady County in 2014. In 2019, the parties stipulated to dismiss the defendant hospital. Subsequently, the remaining defendants filed a motion for change of venue to Westchester County, arguing that the venue was no longer proper as none of the parties resided in Bronx County, and the alleged malpractice occurred in Westchester County.  The court denied the motion.

Standard for Granting a Change of Venue

In New York, a defendant can seek a change of venue within a reasonable time after the lawsuit is commenced. There are three specific grounds for change of venue under the relevant statute. First, venue can be changed if the designated county is improper. Venue can also be changed if an impartial trial cannot be conducted in the relevant county, or if a change of venue is appropriate for the convenience of the material witnesses. Here, the defendants argued that a change of venue was necessary because it was not the proper county, as none of the parties lived there.

The court noted, however, that medical malpractice cases in which a change of venue was granted found the designated venue to be improper, not because of a change in parties, but because it was improper from the onset. The court found that none of the cases relied upon by the defendants supported the argument that a change of venue is appropriate because of a subsequent change to the residence of the party upon which the venue was originally and properly chosen. Thus, the court found no basis to grant the change of venue and denied the motion.

Meet with a Trusted Rochester Neurosurgery Malpractice Attorney to Discuss Your Case

Neurosurgery is a complicated area of medicine and requires significant training and skill. If your neurosurgeon caused you harm due to his or her failure to comply with the applicable standard of care, you should meet with a trusted  Rochester neurosurgery malpractice attorney to discuss your case and what damages you can pursue. The seasoned neurosurgery malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, LLP Personal Injury Lawyers will provide you with zealous and effective representation to help you seek a favorable outcome. You can reach us via our form online or at 833-200-2000 to set up a meeting to discuss your case.


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