Legal Question in Family Law in Illinois

Change of Venue

Can you tell me how to go about changing the venue on a child support case.

Thank-You

Asked on 1/09/03, 10:02 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Lawrence Falli Falli Law Offices
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Re: Change of Venue

Change of venue is generally only proper if neither the husband, wife, or any children of the marriage are residents of the county where the divorce was filed or granted. If there are currently proceedings, change of venue is a bit more difficult. However, if the divorce decree has already been granted, a petition for change of venue can be filed with the court. The party seeking the change is usually required to pay the costs of transferring the file to the new venue.

Your divorce attorney is in the best position to analyze the facts proper for a change of venue. There are other facts which must be analyzed to properly answer your question.

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1/09/03, 1:14 pm
Zachary Bravos Law Offices of Zachary M. Bravos
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Re: Change of Venue

I notice that another attorney has responded to your question. His advice is sound. Please permit me to offer additional thoughts.

Your question speaks to changing “venue” but might also, to a layperson, mean change of judge or change of jurisdiction, and the question makes no mention as to what you intend (another judge, another county, another state) or why you are seeking a change. These issues matter.

Even so, I will address venue as the term is statutorily understood.

With regard to venue, Illinois law provides in part: (735 ILCS 5/2-1001.5, Change of venue) “(a) A change of venue in any civil action may be had when the court determines that any party may not receive a fair trial in the court in which the action is pending because the inhabitants of the county are prejudiced against the party, or his or her attorney, or the adverse party has an undue influence over the minds of the inhabitants.

“(b) Every application for a change of venue by a party or his or her attorney shall be by petition, verified by the affidavit of the applicant. The petition shall set forth the facts upon which the petitioner bases his or her belief of prejudice of the inhabitants of the county or the undue influence of the adverse party over their minds, and must be supported by the affidavits of at least 2 other reputable persons residing in the county. The adverse party may controvert the petition by counter affidavits, and the court may grant or deny the petition as shall appear to be according to the right of the case.

“(c) A petition for change of venue shall not be granted unless it is presented before trial or hearing begins and before the judge to whom it is presented has ruled on any substantial issue in the case, but if any ground for change of venue occurs thereafter, a petition for change of venue may be presented based upon that ground.

“(d) The application may be made to the court in which the case is pending, reasonable notice thereof having been given to the adverse party or his or her attorney.

“(e) When a change of venue is granted, it shall be to some other convenient county to which there is no valid objection.

“(f) The order for a change of venue may be made subject to such equitable terms and conditions as safety to the rights of the parties may seem to require, and the court in its discretion may prescribe.

“(g) The expenses attending a change of venue shall be taxed by the clerk of the court from which the case is certified according to the rates established by law for like services, and shall be paid by the petitioner and not allowed as part of the costs in the action.

* * *

One of the things that is important to understand is that it is difficult to change venue (or judge or jurisdiction for that matter) in the middle of a proceeding. Change of venue is best requested before the tribunal makes any ruling on the merits as to any pending matter.

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1/09/03, 2:36 pm

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