Monday, July 06, 2009

1st DCA – Home Venue Can be Waived by Agencies

Levy County v. Diamond et al , 7 So.3d 564 (Fla. 1st DCA 2009)

The plaintiffs brought a takings case against the County, DEP and Bd of Trustees and filed (understandably, given the home venue rule) in Leon County. Levy County obtained waivers from the agencies and sought transfer of venue. The Plaintiff objected (probably wanting a Leon County jury – who wouldn’t have to pay for any taking claim prosecuted against Levy County), and the circuit court denied the County’s motion. The 1st DCA held that the DEP and Bd of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund (aka, Governor and Cabinet) could waive the “home venue” right (which would require them to be sued in Leon County), and that when they did, the circuit court in Leon County abused its discretion in not transferring venue of an inverse condemnation suit involving property in Levy County to the circuit court in Levy County.

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