Madison County Illinois is one of the state’s 102 counties. It was named after James Madison, statesman and fourth president of the United States, who also had a major role in the Constitutional Convention.
The County was founded before Illinois actually became a state. Around the time of its founding, the area which now makes up the county was part of the Illinois Territory. In the year 1812, Madison County encompassed the overwhelming majority of the state. All of Illinois north of the current southern boundary of Madison County between the Mississippi and Wabash Rivers was part of the county.
The county seat is located in Edwardsville, IL. It is home to approximately 258,941 residents. Located near the southwest edge of the state, Madison County has a land area of 725 sq. mil. It is part of Illinois’ 3rd Judicial Circuit. It is also part of the 5th Judicial District. The Madison County Courthouse is located at 155 North Main Street Edwardsville, IL 62025.
As it is a county in the state of Illinois, many cases filed in Madison County, are governed by Illinois state law. However, there are certainly exceptions to this general rule.
In 2009, Madison County was on the American Tort Reform Associations Watch List. According to ATRA, in recent times, a reform-minded court has made restored fairness and predictability to what was once a magnet for class actions, asbestos litigation, and other big-ticket lawsuits from around the country.
ATRA still considers the county substantially more litigious than other Illinois counties. Following a sharp decline in asbestos cases, filings doubled between 2006 and 2008.
In terms of forum selection, ATRA’s designation as a plaintiff-friendly county may make it worth considering as a location for bringing your injury legal action. However, you will obviously need to meet the jurisdictional and venue requirements for filing suit.
Despite ATRA’s designation, there is really no reason to believe that filing your case any particular county will lead to some unfair advantage for either party. The United States system of civil justice has built in mechanisms to protect against an unfair advantage for either party.
While there are exceptions to this general rule, for the most part, choosing the location to file your lawsuit will be much more dependent on convenience and the location of factual events giving rise to your lawsuit.