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Definition of Change of Venue

A change of venue moves a criminal trial or an injury trial to another location for the trial. There are practical reasons to request a change of venue, for example if neither party lives where the case has been filed. In high profile criminal cases a change of venue may be requested so the defendant can get an impartial jury who has not been contaminated due to widespread publicity about the crime. The thought is a juror who lives in another community may be more objective when performing their duties. All changes of venue should be discussed with a lawyer before they are requested.

If you choose to file a change of venue you must do it as soon as possible or you may give up your rights to make this request. The process varies by state, but generally you must either write in your Response to Petition form that you object to the venue, or you must file a Motion for Change of Venue with the court before you file any more pleadings. In some counties, you have to use forms that are specific to that county.Call your county clerk to ask whether they require certain forms for a Change of Venue Motion before filling out any forms or talk to your injury or criminal lawyer for more information.

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