// Add the new slick-theme.css if you want the default styling
Stephen Hrobowski (“Hrobowski”) was involved in a motor
vehicle accident in Montgomery County, Alabama in 2015 wherein his vehicle
collided with a vehicle being operated by Kevin Ledyard (“Ledyard”). The impact of this collision caused Ledyard’s
vehicle to strike a vehicle being operated by Roosevelt McCorvey (“McCorvey”).
At the time of the subject accident, McCorvey and Ledyard
were residents of Montgomery County, Alabama.
Hrobowski’s driver’s license indicated that he was a resident of Lowndes
McCorvey filed suit against both Hrobowski and Ledyard in
Lowndes County Circuit Court. Hrobowski,
who lived in Montgomery County at the time of the accident, filed a Motion for
Change of Venue from Lowndes County to Montgomery County, seeking forum non
conveniens under Ala. Code 1975 § 6-3-21.1(a) arguing that the only connection
to Lowndes County was his alleged residence.
McCorvey argued in response, that Hrobowski had not demonstrated that
Montgomery County was either significantly more convenient or that the interest
of justice would be served by the transfer.
On August 30, 2017, the trial court denied Hrobowski’s
Motion for Change of Venue, and Hrobowski filed a Motion to Reconsider
attaching thereto, an affidavit testifying that he was not a resident of
Lowndes County, but of Madison County, Alabama.
Therefore, Hrobowski argued, Lowndes County actually had no connection to
Hrobowski also filed a Petition for a Writ of Mandamus regarding
this issue arguing that under the “interest of justice” prong of § 6-2-21.1(a),
the case must be transferred to Montgomery County, Alabama, and writ was
In explaining the application of § 6-2-21.1 and the
“interest of justice” prong under § 6-2-21.1(a), the Court noted that
“litigation should be handled in the forum where the injury occurred” and that
where the action occurred should be given considerably more weight than other
factors. Ex parte Hrobowski, 2018
WL1024718, quoting, Ex parte Fuller, 955 So.2d 414,416 (Ala.
2006); see also, Ex parte
Autauga Heating & Cooling, LLC, 58 So.3d 745 (Ala. 2010).
The Court found in the present case that the subject
accident occurred in Montgomery County and that the investigation of the
accident occurred in Montgomery County, by law-enforcement personnel based in Montgomery
County. Moreover, both McCorvey and
Ledyard resided in Montgomery County and that while Hrobowski may have resided
in Lowndes County that did not outweigh the forum where the accident occurred
for purposes of the “interest of justice” prong of § 6-2-21.1.
Accordingly, based on the fact that the subject accident
occurred in Montgomery County as well as other undisputed facts regarding
residency, the Court concluded that that the trial court exceeded its
discretion in denying Hrobowski’s Motion for Change of Venue. The Court granted Hrobowski’s Petition and
issued a Writ of Mandamus directing the lower court to vacate its previous
Order denying Hrobowski’s Motion and to enter an Order transferring the lawsuit
to Montgomery County, Alabama instead.