Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Wang v. Phoenix Satellite Television Us, Inc.

United States District Court, Second Circuit

January 13, 2014

LIHUAN WANG, Plaintiff,
v.
PHOENIX SATELLITE TELEVISION US, INC., Defendant.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

P. KEVIN CASTEL, District Judge.

Plaintiff Lihuan Wang brings this employment discrimination action against defendant Phoenix Satellite Television US, Inc. ("Phoenix"). Invoking this Court's diversity jurisdiction, she asserts only state law claims pursuant to the New York State Human Rights Law, N.Y. Exec. L. § 290 et seq. ("NYSHRL") and the New York City Human Rights Law, N.Y. City Admin. Code § 8-101 et seq. ("NYCHRL"). Ms. Wang now moves to transfer the case to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a). For the reasons stated below, the motion is denied.

BACKGROUND

On January 9, 2013, Ms. Wang first filed suit against Phoenix and Zhengzhu its former Washington D.C. bureau chief, alleging hostile work environment and failure to hire claims. (Compl., Docket # 1.) At that time, Phoenix, a Delaware corporation, was headquartered in Los Angeles and had bureaus in New York City and Washington D.C. (Id. ¶¶ 7, 9.) Mr. Liu was a resident of the Commonwealth of Virginia. (Id. ¶ 8.)

In her complaint, Ms. Wang alleged that, during an unpaid internship at Phoenix's New York bureau, Mr. Liu took her to a hotel room in Manhattan, New York, and attempted to kiss her by force. (See id. ¶¶ 10, 19.) Subsequently, when Ms. Wang was in Washington D.C., she contacted Mr. Liu regarding employment. (Id. ¶ 21.) According to Ms. Wang, Mr. Liu responded by inviting her to Atlantic City "to discuss job opportunities." (Id.) Ms. Wang further alleged that after she rebuffed Mr. Liu's advances, he retaliated by refusing to provide her with full-time employment at Phoenix's New York bureau. (See id. ¶¶ 51, 58.)

On January 18, Ms. Wang amended her complaint and dropped all claims against Mr. Liu. (Docket # 3.) In response to perceived pleading deficiencies outlined by Phoenix in a March 12 motion to dismiss, Ms. Wang elected to file a Second Amended Complaint on March 29. (Docket # 15, 16, 19.) Phoenix subsequently reified its motion to dismiss, which was fully briefed on June 20. (Docket # 21-25.) On October 3, this Court dismissed Ms. Wang's hostile work environment claims against Phoenix. (Docket # 26.) Ms. Wang requested leave to file this motion two weeks later, on October 16. (Docket # 28.)

During the pendency of this action, current and former Phoenix employees, as well as a former intern, brought independent claims against Phoenix in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and the D.C. Human Rights Act, D.C. Code § 2-1401.01 et seq., stemming from Mr. Liu's alleged actions at the Washington D.C. bureau. Ren v. Phoenix Satellite Television (U.S.), Inc., No. 13-1110 (CCK) (D.D.C July 19, 2013). The Ren plaintiffs are represented by the same counsel as Ms. Wang and Ms. Wang referenced the experiences of two of the plaintiffs in her initial complaint. (See id.; Compl. ¶¶ 27, 29.)

DISCUSSION

Section 1404(a) provides that "[fl or the convenience of parties and witnesses, in the interest of justice, a district court may transfer any civil action to any other district or division where it might have been brought or to any district or division to which all parties have consented." 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a). Thus, "[d]eciding a § 1404(a) motion to transfer venue requires a two-part inquiry: first, whether the action to be transferred might have been brought in the transferee court; and second, whether considering the convenience of the parties and witnesses, and the interest of justice, a transfer is appropriate.'" AGCS Marine Ins. Co. v. Associated Gas & Oil Co., Ltd. , 775 F.Supp.2d 640, 645 (S.D.N.Y. 2011) (quoting Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd. v. Lexar Media Inc. , 415 F.Supp.2d 370, 373 (S.D.N.Y. 2006)).

I. Propriety of the Transferee Forum

An action "might have been brought" in another forum if venue would have been proper there and the defendants would have been amenable to personal jurisdiction in the transferee forum when the action was initiated. See Hoffman v. Blaski , 363 U.S. 335, 344 (1960). Jurisdiction and venue in the District of Columbia would be proper as to Phoenix because it maintains a bureau in Washington D.C., and Mr. Liu, whose actions form the basis of Phoenix's potential liability, was employed at the Washington D.C. bureau at all relevant times.

II. Factors Governing Transfer

The second inquiry is whether "the convenience of parties and witnesses" and "the interest of justice" justify a transfer. 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a). "Among the factors to be considered in determining whether to grant a motion to transfer venue are, inter alia: (1) the plaintiff's choice of forum, (2) the convenience of witnesses, (3) the location of relevant documents and relative ease of access to sources of proof, (4) the convenience of parties, (5) the locus of operative facts, (6) the availability of process to compel the attendance of unwilling witnesses, and (7) the relative means of the parties." New York Marine & Gen. Ins. Co. v. Lafarge N. Am., Inc. , 599 F.3d 102, 112 (2d Cir. 2010) (citation and quotation marks omitted). Other factors considered by district courts include "the forum's familiarity with the governing law" and "trial efficiency and the interests of justice." Everlast World's Boxing Headquarters Corp. v. Inc., 928 F.Supp.2d 735, 743 (S.D.N.Y 2013). The burden of demonstrating the desirability of transfer lies with the moving party, who must "make a clear and convincing showing that the balance of convenience favors [its] choice" of forum. Hubbell Inc. v. Pass & Seymour, Inc. , ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.