Judge Dora Irizarry
Susan Levy, an attorney, filed suit in the Eastern District of New York alleging defendants’ manipulated the platinum and palladium futures markets and caused her to lose her investments. Defendants sought transfer to the Southern District of New York (SDNY) under 28 U.S.C. §1404(a). The court noted that four separate class actions pertaining to the same alleged claims had been filed and consolidated in the SDNY. Levy admitted that while she may be a class member, she preferred to proceed on her own and may opt out of the class actions if necessary. The court further noted that district judge assigned the class suits had already resolved substantive legal and discovery issues. The court granted defendants transfer, finding that Levy’s choice of forum was given little, if any, deference because she was not a resident of this forum and there was evidence of forum shopping. The court also reasoned that transfer to the SDNY would substantially conserve judicial economy because having two judges in different district courts preside over similar, if not identical, litigation was a waste of judicial resources. Thus the court ruled that the interests of justice and judicial economy heavily outweigh any deference given to Levy’s choice of forum.