Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Venue Definition:

Location or proposed district of a judicial hearing.

Related Terms: Jurisdiction

In R. v Manley, Justice Groysky of the Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench wrote:

"Venue ... means a place of trial"

In a 1945 case (Iselin v. La Coste), Justice Waller of the Circuit Court of Appeals noted:

"Jurisdiction is the power to adjudicate and is granted by Congress. Litigants may not confer this power on the court by waiver or consent, but the place where the power to adjudicate is to be exercised is venue, not jurisdiction. The venue has relation to the convenience of the litigants and may be waived or laid by consent of the parties."

Similarly, in 1986, Justice Barnes of the United States Court of Appeals in Securities Investor Protection Corporation v. Vigman:

"Jurisdiction is the power to adjudicate, while venue relates to the place where judicial authority may be exercised...."

If a criminal case has a very high media profile in a particular city, the venue may change to another city to ensure objective witnesses (i.e. that would not have been spoiled by media speculation on the crime).


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