183. Further, "plaintiff's choice of forum need not be rigidly adhered to in a patent infringement case when it appears that the balance of convenience tips substantially in the direction of another forum." Levinson v. Regal Ware, Inc., 1989 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17455, 14 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1064 (D.N.J. 1989).
Although this district is plaintiff's residence and choice of forum, I find that the transactions involved here do not have a material relation to this district. Plaintiff attempted to persuade the Court at oral argument that there was a significant connection between the alleged infringement and this district because defendants have sold or offered to sell the infringing product here. Courts have found, however, that where defendants goods are sold in many states, sales alone are not enough to establish a material connection to the forum and override the other factors favoring transfer. Coloplast A/S, 1992 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17587, 25 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1549; Boreal Laser, Inc., 1992 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 276, 22 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1559; Matra et Manurhin v. International Armament Co., 628 F. Supp. 1532 (S.D.N.Y. 1986).
Further, two defendants have raised significant jurisdictional and venue objections to plaintiff's choice of forum. On their face, these objections appear to have some merit, particularly with respect to one of the defendants. I find that this is also a factor warranting a transfer in this case. In Michigan, all three actions will be able to proceed together--a result which may not be possible if the actions remain in this district.
4. Trial Efficiency
Courts have held that the relative docket conditions of the transferor and transferee courts may be considered in determining a motion to transfer. IBJ Schroder Bank & Trust Co. v. Mellon Bank, N.A., 730 F. Supp. 1278, 1282 (S.D.N.Y. 1990). The case load of the Western District of Michigan appears to be lower than that of this district. For example, each judge in the Western District of New York has 653 pending case, while each judge in the Western District of Michigan has 288 pending cases. Further, in the Western District of New York, it takes approximately 34 months from the filing of a civil action to trial, whereas in the Western District of Michigan, it takes only 19 months. 1995 Federal Court Management Statistics 49, 92 (May 1996). These statistics suggest that the actions would be tried sooner in the Western District of Michigan than here. Further, Congress designated the Western District of Michigan as a special test district for a differentiated case management system intended to result in even greater efficiency. Public Law 101-650, § 104(b).
Accordingly, I find that trial efficiency and the interest of justice weigh in favor of a transfer of these actions to the Western District of Michigan.
Defendants' Other Motions: Motion To Dismiss And Motion For A More Definite Statement
As discussed, defendants have advanced persuasive arguments which convince me that transfer of these actions to the Western District of Michigan is appropriate. The fact that defendants Jolliffe and Micro have moved to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction and venue does not preclude this Court from considering and granting the transfer motion.
These cases having now been transferred to the Western District of Michigan, defendants Jolliffe and Micro's motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction and venue is denied as moot since there is no claim that personal jurisdiction or venue is lacking in the Western District of Michigan.
Finally, it appears more appropriate for the Court in the Western District of Michigan to decide Black Magic's motion for a more definite statement.
Therefore, Black Magic's motion for a more definite statement is denied without prejudice and with leave to renew in the Western District of Michigan.
Defendants' motions to transfer venue to the Western District of Michigan in all three actions are granted. The Clerk of the Court for the Western District of New York is directed to transfer all records and all papers in these actions (96-CV-6362L, 96-CV-6367L, 96-CV-6374L) to the Clerk of the Court for the Western District of Michigan.
Defendant Micro and Jolliffe's motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction in 96-CV-6367L is denied as moot.
Defendant Black Magic's motion for a more definite statement in 96-CV-6374L is denied without prejudice and with leave to renew in the Western District of Michigan.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
DAVID G. LARIMER
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
Dated: Rochester, New York
February 20, 1997.