TRANSFER ORDER :
Plaintiff, who appears pro se, asserts claims that the defendant, the City of New York, violated his federal constitutional rights. For the following reasons, the Court transfers this action to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
Under the general venue provision, a civil action may be brought in:
(1) a judicial district in which any defendant resides, if all defendants are residents of the State in which the district is located; (2) a judicial district in which a substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred . . . ; or (3) if there is no district in which an action may otherwise be brought as provided in this section, any judicial district in which any defendant is subject to the court's personal jurisdiction with respect to such action.28 U.S.C. § 1391(b). For venue purposes, a "natural person" resides in the district where the person is domiciled. § 1391(c)(1). And any other type of defendant resides "in any judicial district in which such defendant is subject to the court's personal jurisdiction with respect to the civil action in question." § 1391(c)(2). Where a state has more than one federal judicial district, a defendant that is a corporation generally "shall be deemed to reside in any district in that State within which its contacts would be sufficient to subject it to personal jurisdiction if that district were a separate State." § 1391(d).
In a state with multiple districts, if there is no such district, "the corporation shall be deemed to reside in the district within which it has the most significant contacts." § 1391(d). --------
Plaintiff filed this complaint regarding events that allegedly occurred in Long Island City, Queens County, New York. He names the City of New York as the sole defendant. The City of New York resides in both this judicial district and in the Eastern District of New York. See 28 U.S.C. § 112(b), (c). Thus, both this Court and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York are proper venues for this action under § 1391(b)(1).
But this Court may transfer claims "[f]or the convenience of the parties and witnesses, in the interest of justice." 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a). "District courts have broad discretion in making determinations of convenience under Section 1404(a) and notions of convenience and fairness are considered on a case-by-case basis." D.H. Blair & Co. v. Gottdiener, 462 F.3d 95, 106 (2d Cir. 2006). Moreover, courts may transfer cases on their own initiative. See Bank of Am., N.A. v. Wilmington Trust FSB, 943 F. Supp. 2d 417, 426-27 (S.D.N.Y. 2013); Cento v. Pearl Arts & Craft Supply Inc., No. 03-CV-2424, 2003 WL 1960595, at *1 (S.D.N.Y. Apr. 24, 2003) ("Courts have an independent institutional concern to see to it that the burdens of litigation that is unrelated to the forum that a party chooses are not imposed unreasonably on jurors and judges who have enough to do in determining cases that are appropriately before them. The power of district courts to transfer cases under Section 1404(a) sua sponte therefore is well established."); see also Lead Indus. Ass'n. Inc. v. OSHA., 610 F.2d 70, 79 n.17 (2d Cir. 1979) (noting that "[t]he broad language of 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) would seem to permit a court to order transfer sua sponte").
In determining whether transfer is appropriate, courts consider the following factors: (1) the convenience of witnesses; (2) the convenience of the parties; (3) the locus of operative facts; (4) the availability of process to compel the attendance of the unwilling witnesses; (5) the location of relevant documents and the relative ease of access to sources of proof; (6) the relative means of the parties; (7) the forum's familiarity with the governing law; (8) the weight accorded to the plaintiff's choice of forum; (9) trial efficiency; and (10) the interest of justice, based on the totality of circumstances. Keitt v. N.Y. City, 882 F. Supp. 2d 412, 458-59 (S.D.N.Y. 2011); see also N.Y. Marine and Gen. Ins. Co. v. LaFarge No. Am., Inc., 599 F.3d 102, 112 (2d Cir. 2010) (setting forth similar factors).
Under § 1404(a), transfer appears to be appropriate in this action. The underlying events occurred in Queens County, in the Eastern District of New York. See § 112(c). In addition, it is likely that relevant documents and witnesses are located in that judicial district. Based on the totality of the circumstances, the Court concludes that it is in the interest of justice to transfer this action to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. See § 1404(a).
The Clerk of Court is directed to transfer this action to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. The Clerk of Court is further directed to mail a copy of this order to Plaintiff and note service on the docket. Whether Plaintiff should be permitted to proceed further without prepayment of fees is a determination to be made by the transferee court. A summons shall not issue from this Court. This order closes this case.
The Court certifies, under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), that any appeal from this order would not be taken in good faith, and therefore in forma pauperis status is denied for the purpose of an appeal. See Coppedge v. United States, 369 U.S. 438, 444-45 (1962). SO ORDERED. Dated: February 10, 2020
New York, New York
Chief United States District Judge