Chegini v. Harborview Mortgage Loan Trust 2006-12 et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Ellen L. Hollander on 8/16/2017. (c/m 8/16/17 jnls, Deputy Clerk)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND
Civil Action No. ELH-17-664
LOAN TRUST 2006-12, et al.,
Azadeh Chegini, the self-represented plaintiff, filed suit against a host of defendants,
including Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (“Wells Fargo”), as trustee on behalf of the holders of the
HarborView Mortgage Loan Trust 2006-12 (collectively, “Harborview”); Select Portfolio
Servicing, Inc. (“SPS”); Bank of America, N.A. (“BANA”)1; and Mortgage Guaranty Insurance
Corporation ("MGIC"). Id. The dispute stems from a mortgage loan of $380,000 obtained by
plaintiff from First Magnus Financial Corporation (“First Magnus”) in connection with a
property located on Pinecrest Heights Drive in Annandale, Virginia (the “Property”).
Plaintiff‟s Complaint is 71-pages long. See id. And, plaintiff filed 71 exhibits with her
BANA “is the successor by merger to BAC Home Loans Servicing, which was known
formerly as Countrywide Home Loans Servicing LP.” Deutsche Bank Nat'l Trust Co. v. Brock,
430 Md. 714, 720 n. 6, 63 A.3d 40, 43 n. 6 (2013). Plaintiff has sued BANA both individually
and as successor to “Countrywide Financial Corp.”, “Countrywide Home Loans”, and
“Countrywide Home Loans Servicing, L.P.” ECF 1 at 1.
In the Complaint, plaintiff skips from paragraph 188 to paragraph 221. See ECF 1 at
58-59. In addition paragraphs 173 and 174 appear on two pages. See id. at 56, 59. The exhibits
were filed in paper format with the Clerk and are not available on CM/ECF. I shall refer to the
exhibits by the number used by plaintiff.
The Complaint is, at times, difficult to understand. Nevertheless, it appears that plaintiff
asserts four counts.3 In Count One, plaintiff claims that her mortgage is void or voidable because
of violations of the Truth in Lending Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1601 et seq.; the Real Estate Settlement
Procedures Act, 12 U.S.C. §§ 2601 et. seq.; and fraud. ECF 1, ¶¶ 84-146. In Count Two,
plaintiff claims that she is entitled to rescission under 15 U.S.C. § 1653(i). ECF 1, ¶¶ 147-172.
Count Three asserts a claim of violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1691
et seq. ECF 1, ¶¶ 173-224. And, in Count Four, plaintiff asserts a claim under the Homeowner
Protection Act, 12 U.S.C.A. §§ 4901 et seq. ECF 1, ¶¶ 225-259.
Three motions to dismiss are pending. First, SPS and Harborview filed a motion to
dismiss for failure to state a claim, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). ECF 4.
The motion is supported by a memorandum of law (ECF 4-1) and exhibits. ECF 4-2 through
ECF 4-4. Plaintiff opposes the motion (ECF 10) and submitted another 18 exhibits.4 SPS &
Harborview have replied. ECF 15.
Second, BANA moved to dismiss the case for lack of venue, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P.
12(b)(3), and for failure to state a claim, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). ECF 17. BANA‟s
motion is supported by a memorandum of law. ECF 18-1 (collectively, BANA‟s Motion).
Plaintiff opposes BANA‟s Motion (ECF 28), with exhibits. ECF 18-1 through ECF 18-5.
BANA has replied. ECF 34.
The Court is mindful of its obligation to construe liberally the pleadings of a pro se
litigant, which are “held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by
lawyers.” Erickson v.Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); see also White v. White, 886 F.2d 721,
722-23 (4th Cir. 1989).
Plaintiff‟s exhibits were filed in paper format only.
Third, MGIC filed a motion to dismiss (ECF 18) for failure to state a claim, pursuant to
Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), supported by a memorandum of law. ECF 18-1. Chegini opposes
MGIC‟s motion (ECF 27), with exhibits. ECF 27-1 through ECF 27-5. MGIC replied. ECF 31.
No hearing is necessary with respect to the motions. See Local Rule 105.6. For the
reasons that follow, I conclude that venue is not proper in this Court. Therefore, I shall transfer
the case to the Eastern District of Virginia, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). And, because venue
is improper, I shall not address the remaining motions.
Chegini is the owner of the Property. ECF 1, ¶ 9. On or about October 18, 2006,
plaintiff executed a Deed of Trust in favor of First Magnus and obtained an adjustable rate
mortgage in the amount of $380,000.00 (“Loan”), with an initial interest rate of 2.000%, secured
by the Property. ECF 1, Ex. 2 (Deed of Trust) at 2. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems,
Inc. (“MERS”) was selected as the nominee for First Magnus. Id.
On or about July 20, 2011, MERS executed an assignment of the Deed of Trust to BAC
Home Loans Servicing. ECF 1, Ex. 3. Thereafter, on August 10, 2012, the Deed of Trust was
assigned from BANA, as the successor by merger to BAC Home Loans Servicing, to
Harborview. See ECF 17-2 (Assignment). SPS is the servicing agent for Wells Fargo. ECF 1,
According to SPS, Harborview, and BANA, plaintiff defaulted in 2009 on her payment
obligations under the Loan. See ECF 4-1 at 1 and ECF 17-1 at 3. BANA states that plaintiff has
made no payments on the loan since 2009. ECF 17-1 at 3. As a result of the default, plaintiff
has faced “numerous thwarted attempts at foreclosure.” ECF 1, ¶ 21. Indeed, Chegini alleges
that she “has been in foreclosure, and under the threat of foreclosure numerous times and
continuously during the last eight years.” Id. ¶ 104.
On July 22, 2013, plaintiff filed suit in the Circuit Court for Fairfax County, Virginia,
against Harborview; BANA; and SPS. See ECF 4-4 (State suit). In her state court complaint,
Chegini asserted fifteen causes of action, including each of the four causes of action contained in
the case sub judice. See id. at 2-3. On August 21, 2013, the defendants removed the case to the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. See ECF 1 in E.D. Va. Case
1:13-cv-01042-GBL-JFA (“Va. Case” or “Virginia Case”).
On November 25, 2013, SPS,
BANA, and Harborview collectively moved to dismiss the case for failure to prosecute, pursuant
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b). See Va. Case, ECF 39. On December 12, 2013, Judge
Gerald Bruce Lee, to whom the case was assigned, granted defendants‟ motion and dismissed the
case, without prejudice. See Va. Case, ECF 43. This suit followed more than three years later,
on March 9, 2017. See ECF 1.
Standard of Review
A defendant may challenge the sufficiency of the plaintiff‟s choice of venue by way of a
motion under Rule 12(b)(3). Section § 1391(b) of 28 U.S.C. provides that venue is proper in:
(1) a judicial district in which any defendant resides, if all defendants are residents
of the State in which the district is located;
(2) a judicial district in which a substantial part of the events or omissions giving
rise to the claim occurred, or a substantial part of property that is the subject of
the action is situated; or
(3) if there is no district in which an action may otherwise be brought as provided
in this section, any judicial district in which any defendant is subject to the court's
personal jurisdiction with respect to such action.
These three subsections are often referred to, respectively, as “residential venue,”
“transactional venue,” and “fallback venue.”
C. Wright & A. Miller, Federal Practice &
Procedure, (3d ed.) (“Wright & Miller”), § 1304. The first two subsections are “preferred
judicial districts” for venue, while the third subsection provides a “fallback option . . . .” Atlantic
Marine Const. Co., Inc. v. U.S. Dist. Court for Western Dist. of Texas, ___ U.S. ___, 134 S.Ct.
568, 578 (2013). Thus, “if no other venue is proper, venue will lie in any judicial district in
which any defendant is subject to the court's personal jurisdiction [under 1391(b)(3)].” Id.
(internal quotations and citation omitted) (emphasis omitted).
In addition, § 1391(c) is pertinent. It states, in part, id.:
[A]n entity with the capacity to sue and be sued in its common name under
applicable law, whether or not incorporated, shall be deemed to reside, if a
defendant, in any judicial district in which such defendant is subject to the court's
personal jurisdiction with respect to the civil action in question . . . .
In the Fourth Circuit, when a challenge to venue is raised, the plaintiff bears the burden
of demonstrating that venue is appropriate.
Bartholomew v. Virginia Chiropractors
Association, 612 F.2d 812, 816 (4th Cir. 1979), cert. denied, 446 U.S. 938 (1980), overruled on
other grounds by Union Labor Life Ins. Co. v. Pireno, 458 U.S. 119 (1982); accord Tinoco v.
Thesis Painting, Inc., GJH-16-752, 2017 WL 52554, at *2 (D. Md. Jan. 3, 2017); Jones v. Koons
Auto. Inc., 752 F. Supp. 2d 670, 679 (D. Md. 2010).
When the court does not hold an
evidentiary hearing, “the plaintiff need only make a prima facie showing that venue is proper.”
CareFirst, Inc. v. Taylor, ___ F. Supp. 3d ___, 2017 WL 75947, at *3 (D. Md. 2017) (Blake,
C.J.) (citing Mitrano v. Hawes, 377 F.3d 402, 405 (4th Cir. 2004)). “In assessing whether there
has been a prima facie venue showing, [the court views] the facts in the light most favorable to
the plaintiff.” Aggarao v. MOL Ship Mgmt. Co., 675 F.3d 355, 366 (4th Cir. 2012). And, the
court may “freely consider evidence outside the pleadings . . . .” Sucampo Pharm., Inc. v.
Astellas Pharma, Inc., 471 F.3d 544, 550 (4th Cir. 2006); see also Aggarao, 675 F.3d at 365-56
(“On a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(3), a court is permitted to consider evidence outside
the pleadings.”); Taylor v. Shreeji Swami, Inc., PWG-16-3787, 2017 WL 1832206, at *1 (D. Md.
May 8, 2017) (same); Convergence Mgmt. Assocs., Inc. v. Callender, TDC-15-4015, 2016 WL
6662253, at *2 (D. Md. Nov. 10, 2016) (same).
Because “„it is possible for venue to be proper in more than one judicial district,‟ the
question is not whether a given district is the best venue, but whether the events or omissions that
occurred there are „sufficiently substantial.‟” Carefirst, 2017 WL 75947, at *4 (quoting Mitrano,
377 F.3d at 405). And, in considering “whether events or omissions are sufficiently substantial
to support venue . . . , a court should not focus only on those matters that are in dispute or that
directly led to the filing of the action.” Mirtano, 377 F.3d at 406 (citation omitted). Instead, “it
should review „the entire sequence of events underlying the claim.‟” Id.; accord Taylor, 2017
WL 1832206, at *1; Callender, 2016 WL 6662253, at *2.
As indicated, BANA claims that venue is not proper in Maryland. ECF 17-1 at 5-6.
According to BANA, “all relevant events occurred in Virginia.” Id. at 6. Based on plaintiff‟s
own allegations, BANA points out that the Property is located in Virginia, plaintiff resides in
Virginia, and the Loan originated in Virginia. Id. Thus, BANA asserts that “the appropriate
venue for the claims asserted . . . is the [Eastern] District of Virginia, not this District, because a
„substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred‟ in Virginia and
because the „property that is the subject of the action is situated‟ in Virginia, not in Maryland.”
Id. Moreover, BANA asserts, id.: “[F]or venue purposes, this case has no relevant connection to
Maryland, and Plaintiff should not be permitted to forum-shop.” Id.
In her Complaint, Chegini states: “The District Court may exercise jurisdiction over all of
the Defendants in this action inasmuch as the Defendants . . . have conducted regular business in
all fifty states . . . .” ECF 1, ¶ 1. In her opposition to BANA‟s Motion, Chegini claims that
BANA‟s “accusations of forum shopping are without merit.” ECF 28 at 10.
plaintiff, the conditions of the Court‟s jurisdiction have been met: “(1) the claims are related to
Federal law which may be adjudicated in any Federal Court in the United States; (2) [the] parties
have diverse citizenship; and (3) the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000.” Id.
Further, Chegini contends that she “had legitimate reasons to choose Maryland District
Court.” Id. She also contends that she “has the right to choose the venue” and her choice of
venue does not prejudice defendants because BANA has “legal counsel who represent them in all
fifty states, and BANA‟s national counsel is in Washington D.C. . . .” Id. In addition, Chegini
contests BANA‟s argument that all relevant events occurred in Virginia. Id. at 11. She claims
that pertinent events occurred in Arizona, California, Connecticut, New York, and Wisconsin.
Id. And, she states that “Wells Fargo, the manager for the trust claimed to own Plaintiff‟s loan[,]
is domiciled in Maryland.” Id. at 10.
In its reply, BANA maintains that plaintiff has confused “this Court‟s diversity
jurisdiction with venue.” ECF 34 at 3. BANA argues: “Plaintiff offers no rationale, argument,
or allegation connecting the loan, property, or the allegations in the Complaint to Maryland.” Id.
And, BANA notes that, to the extent that plaintiff claims that Wells Fargo is domiciled in
Maryland, that claim is factually inaccurate. According to BANA, “Wells Fargo is a national
chartered banking association organized under the laws of the United States of America,” with
its “main office” located in South Dakota. Id. at 3 n. 3.
In my view, under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b), plaintiff has failed to make a prima facie
showing that venue is proper in the District of Maryland.
First, venue is not proper in Maryland under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(1). As indicated,
§ 1391(b)(1) provides that a civil action may be brought in “a judicial district in which any
defendant resides, if all defendants are residents of the State in which the district is located.”
Wright and Miller provides an example explaining the operation of § 1391(b), id. § 3805:
“Plaintiff sues two defendants. One resides in the Eastern District of Virginia and the other
resides in the District of Maryland. There is no district in which venue is proper under Section
1391(b)(1) . . . Residential venue cannot be invoked on this fact pattern.”
Here, the defendants are entities with the capacity to be sued. Therefore, they are deemed
to reside in any judicial district in which they are subject to personal jurisdiction at the time the
action was commenced. See 28 U.S.C. § 1391(c). I pause to review briefly the fundamental
principles of personal jurisdiction with respect to a corporate entity.
The Supreme Court has long held that personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant
is constitutionally permissible so long as the defendant has “minimum contacts with [the forum
state] such that the maintenance of the suit does not offend „traditional notions of fair play and
substantial justice.‟” International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 316 (1945). Due
process jurisprudence recognizes “two types of personal jurisdiction: general and specific.”
CFA Inst. v. Inst. of Chartered Fin. Analysts of India, 551 F.3d 285, 292 n. 15 (4th Cir. 2009).
The Fourth Circuit has explained:
General personal jurisdiction, on the one hand, requires “continuous and
systematic” contacts with the forum state, such that a defendant may be sued in
that state for any reason, regardless of where the relevant conduct occurred.
Specific personal jurisdiction, on the other hand, requires only that the relevant
conduct have such a connection with the forum state that it is fair for the
defendant to defend itself in that state.
Id. (citing, inter alia, Helicopteros Nacionales de Colombia, S.A. v. Hall, 466 U.S. 408, 414-15,
(1984)) (internal citations omitted).
A court may exercise general jurisdiction over foreign corporations to hear “any and all
claims” against the corporations “when their affiliations with the State are so „continuous and
systematic‟ as to render them essentially at home in the forum State.” Goodyear Dunlop Tires
Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. 915, 919 (2011) (citations omitted). In contrast, specific
jurisdiction “depends on an „affiliatio[n] between the forum and the underlying
controversy . . . .‟” Id. (citation omitted) (alteration in Goodyear).
Plaintiff has failed to allege facts to support the existence of general personal jurisdiction
in Maryland over BANA, SPS, or MGIC. See ECF 1; ECF 28. In particular, she has not alleged
facts tending to show that the defendant entities are effectively “at home” in Maryland. See ECF
11. Nor has she made allegations sufficient to make a finding of specific jurisdiction over
BANA, SPS, or MGIC in Maryland. In particular, Chegini has failed to point to any events
relating to this litigation that occurred in Maryland. See id.
To be sure, Chegini alleges that Harborview has its “principal corporate trust office” in
Columbia, Maryland. See ECF 1, ¶ 12. However, even if Harborview is subject to personal
jurisdiction in Maryland, venue is not proper under § 1391(b)(1) because Chegini has failed to
make a showing that the other defendants are subject to personal jurisdiction in Maryland.
Second, venue is not proper in the District of Maryland under § 1391(b)(2). As noted,
§ 1391(b)(2) provides that a civil action may be brought in “a judicial district in which a
substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred, or a substantial part
of property that is the subject of the action is situated.” In determining whether a substantial part
of the events underlying a claim arose in a particular district, the Fourth Circuit has considered
the activities of both plaintiffs and defendants. See, e.g., Mitrano, 377 F.3d 405–406 (stating that
plaintiff's “work under the contract constituted „a substantial part of the events‟ [and] omissions
giving rise to [plaintiff's] claim.”).
The opinion of the court in Walker v. National Mortgage LLC, 142 F. Supp. 3d 63
(D.D.C. 2015), provides guidance. In that case, the self-represented plaintiffs filed a 67-page
suit against a host of defendants under the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729 et seq., and the
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692 et seq., concerning the foreclosure of their
property, located in Maryland. Id. at 65. Two of the defendants moved to dismiss the case, inter
alia, for lack of venue. Id. at 67.
In reviewing the applicability of § 1391(b)(2), the court observed: “Plaintiffs have not
pled any facts which might support transactional venue in the District of Columbia.” Id. The
court explained, id. at 68:
Plaintiffs allege a mortgage secured for a property in Maryland, mortgage
servicing associated with that property, a foreclosure proceeding initiated in the
state of Maryland, and other acts associated with Plaintiffs' Maryland property.
Moreover, based on the address listed in the Complaint, Plaintiffs currently live at
the Maryland property that is the subject of the foreclosure.
Thus, the court concluded, id.:
Because the transaction appears to have no connection to the District of
Columbia, the Plaintiffs have not pled facts establishing that “a substantial part of
the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred” in the District of
Columbia or that “a substantial part of property that is the subject of the action is
situated” in this jurisdiction.
Similarly, Chegini has not alleged any facts that support the conclusion that venue is
appropriate in the District of Maryland under § 1391(b)(2). To the contrary, Chegini alleges that
she is a resident of Virginia and that the Property is located in Virginia. ECF 1, ¶ 9. And, in her
opposition to BANA‟s Motion, Chegini claims that events relevant to the litigation occurred in
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Arizona, California, Connecticut, New York, and Wisconsin. ECF 28 at 11. Notably, she did
not claim that any relevant events took place in Maryland. See id.
From my review, the only facts that Chegini has alleged that pertain to Maryland are that
the principal address of Harborview is in Maryland (ECF1, ¶ 12) and that Wells Fargo is
domiciled in Maryland. ECF 28 at 10. However, she has not pointed to any events in the
sequence underlying the claim that occurred in Maryland. Even assuming plaintiff‟s allegations
are true, venue is not proper in Maryland under § 1391(b)(2) because she has not pleaded facts
establishing that “a substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred”
in Maryland or that “a substantial part of property that is the subject of the action is situated” in
this jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(2).
Third, venue is not proper in Maryland under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(3). Section 1391(b)(3)
provides that, “if there is no district in which an action may otherwise be brought”, venue is
proper in “any judicial district in which any defendant is subject to the court's personal
jurisdiction with respect to such action.”
Plaintiff has not disputed that venue is proper in the Eastern District of Virginia. Indeed,
she filed suit in the Circuit Court for Fairfax County in 2013 based on the same core facts and
allegations here, and against three of the same parties. Compare ECF 11 with ECF 4-4.5 As
noted, Harborview and SPS removed plaintiff‟s Virginia state court case to the Eastern District
of Virginia. See Va. Case, ECF 1.6 Furthermore, in its reply, BANA affirmatively stated that
The Property is located in Fairfax County, Virginia, and disputes arising in Fairfax
County are properly heard in the Alexandria Division of the Eastern District of Virginia. See 28
U.S.C. § 127(a); E.D.V.A. Local Rule 3(B).
According to SPS and Harborview, BANA had not yet been served when the case was
removed. Va. Case, ECF 1, ¶ 15.
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“the appropriate venue for the claims asserted in the Complaint is the [Eastern] District of
Virginia . . . .” ECF 34 at 3.7
From my review, venue appears to be proper in the Eastern District of Virginia under 28
U.S.C. § 1391(b)(2), because that is the judicial district where the Property is located (ECF 1, ¶
9), where plaintiff resides (id.), where it appears the Deed of Trust was signed (see ECF 1, Ex.
2), and because a substantial number of the events underlying the Complaint occurred. See id.
Therefore, extending venue under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(3) would not be appropriate.
Transfer, 28 U.S.C. § 1406
Section 1406 of Title 28 of the United States Code pertains to the “cure or waiver of
defects” of venue. Section 1406(a) provides: “The district court of a district in which is filed a
case laying venue in the wrong division or district shall dismiss, or if it be in the interest of
justice, transfer such case to any district or division in which it could have been brought.”
The statute makes clear that, where venue is improper, the district court has discretion to
dismiss the action or transfer it to a forum in which the case could have been brought. See id.;
see also Sewell v. Commodity Futures Trading Comm'n, PX-16-2457, 2017 WL 1196614, at *4
(D. Md. Mar. 31, 2017) (explaining that, under § 1406(a), “[w]hether a transfer would be in the
interest of justice is committed to the discretion of the trial court”); Ademiluyi v. Nat'l Bar Ass'n,
GJH-15-02947, 2016 WL 4705536, at *3 (D. Md. Sept. 8, 2016) (same).
Among other things, factors that courts have considered in determining whether transfer
is in the interest of justice include whether the statute of limitations has run since the
commencement of the action; if the defendant has misled the plaintiff on facts relevant to venue;
if transfer would be more efficient or economical than dismissal; and if plaintiff‟s belief that
In connection with the case sub judice, Harborview, SPS, and MGIC have not stated
their respective views on whether venue is proper in the Eastern District of Virginia.
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venue was proper was in good faith and reasonable. Wright & Miller, § 3827. In addition, many
courts have found that transfer rather than dismissal is in the interest of justice when the plaintiff
is self-represented. See, e.g., Proctor v. Morrissey, 45 F.3d 427 (4th Cir. 1995) (table) (per
curiam) (vacating district court order dismissing an action filed by a pro se litigant for failure to
consider transfer under § 1406(a)); see also Fam v. Bank of Am. NA (USA), ___ F. Supp. 3d ___,
2017 WL 706151, at *8 (D.D.C. Feb. 22, 2017) (“[C]ourts have concluded that the presumption
in favor of transfer is especially strong where a plaintiff files a complaint pro se.”) (collecting
cases); Agundis v. Rice, 16-00122-CG-B, 2017 WL 1293060, at *6 (S.D. Ala. Feb. 22, 2017)
(“The undersigned finds that it is in the interest of justice to transfer this case . . . given that
Plaintiff is proceeding pro se.”), report and recommendation adopted, 2017 WL 1281150 (S.D.
Ala. Apr. 3, 2017); Dabbagui v. Halliburton Energy Serv., No. 3:16-CV-2739-B-BN, 2016 WL
6788071, at *2 (N.D. Tex. Oct. 25, 2016) (“[T]he interest of justice's transfer-over-dismissal
preference „is especially true when the plaintiff files a complaint pro se.‟”) (citation
omitted), report and recommendation adopted, 2016 WL 6778393 (N.D. Tex. Nov. 15, 2016).
Here, transfer to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia is in
the interest of justice because plaintiff is self-represented and because transfer will promote
efficiency and economy. In particular, plaintiff has now filed two suits based on the facts
surrounding the Loan, the earlier of which dates to January 2013. Dismissal would not promote
the resolution of the dispute and would likely lead to additional litigation. It is in the interest of
justice for plaintiff‟s allegations to be heard in a proper forum, without the time and expense of
initiating a new case.
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Plaintiff has not made a prima facie showing that venue is proper in Maryland under 28
U.S.C. § 1391. However, because transfer, rather than dismissal, is in the interest of justice, I
shall transfer the case to the Eastern District of Virginia.
In view of my disposition regarding venue, I do not address defendants‟ various motions
to dismiss, pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6). See ECF 4; ECF 17; ECF 18.
An Order follows, consistent with this Memorandum Opinion.
Date: August 16, 2017
Ellen L. Hollander
United States District Judge
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