Family Law (Divorce, Family Relations)/improper venue?
Sorry if this is a repeat...not sure if first question went through.
Hello, Ex wife and I resided and were divorced in a county in Florida approx. 2 years ago. Her and the children moved to a different county 4 hours away to be with her family. It was not amicable and several petitions/motions were filed...one of them being a transfer of venue filed by her attorney. All motions, etc were handled in original residing county. We ended with an agreement and a file judgment was filed. In the final judgment, the original residing county claims jurisdiction over the case, specifically stating jurisdiction over the children. Now, I was just served by the county she now lives in and among other things, is requesting sole custody. Her attorney is claiming that the proper venue is where the children reside...but isn't that for the originating county to decide? Since he was not granted a transfer of venue in originating county...is it proper for him to just file in another county? Can I answer with a motion to dismiss? I have to represent myself as I am a full time student and have limited income. Appreciate any advice you have to offer
Hi FloridaMan, you can answer with a motion to dismiss and/or transfer of venue. Jurisdiction is proper in any county in Florida and venue is usually selected by the filing party. At the hearing on the motion to dismiss/transfer you can expect that your ex-wife's attorney will argue that venue is more proper in the county he has chosen for the convenience of the parties and witnesses. If in fact the originating court specifically reserved venue, not jurisdiction, over the children then the court should be specifically made aware of that fact and you may also what to gather some case law that will support your argument that venue is only proper in the originating court due to the specific reservation.
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Daniel Bachert, Esq.
The Bachert Law Firm, P.A.
330 Clematis Street, Suite 222
West Palm Beach, Florida 33401