South-Western Legal Studies in Business

County in Which Accident Occurs Is Preferred Venue for Trial
Description

Indiana high court held that in cases of vehicle accidents, the county in which the accident occurred is the preferred venue for a trial results from the accident, rather than the home county of the plaintiff.

Topic Court Procedure
Key Words

Venue; Accident Location

C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts

Hazel, a truck driver for R&D Transport, lives in Hendricks County, Indiana, which is where R&D is located. His truck was in an accident in Dearborn County, Indiana. The accident injured A.H., a minor, who lives in Porter County, Indiana. Suit was filed on behalf of A.H. against R&D and Hazel in Porter County. They moved to have the case transferred to either Hendricks or Dearborn County. The trial court refused to change venue; defendants appealed. The appeals court affirmed. Defendants appealed that ruling.

Decision

Reversed. Venue is the proper or possible place for a lawsuit to proceed. In general, any lawsuit may proceed in any county, but certain counties are granted preferred venue status. That is the case here. Actions for the recovery of real property, or for the determination in any form of such rights or interest, and for injuries to real property, must be commenced in the county in which the subject of the action, or some part of it, is situated. Also, in cases involving motor vehicle accidents, the preferred venue is where the accident occurred. Porter County is not the county of preferred venue.

Citation

R&D Transport, Inc. v. A.H., ---N.E.2d--- (2006 WL 3804397, Sup. Ct., Ind., 2006)

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