No More Delay For Summary Judgment Until Discovery Complete

“[T]here is no absolute right to delay action on a motion for summary judgment until discovery is complete.” As long as the parties are afforded a fair opportunity to carry out discovery and to present their claim, summary judgment may be warranted.

Plaintiff was injured in a slip and fall accident while working as an employee for K-Mart. Plaintiff filed a Petition for Damages against the cleaning service that was sub-contracted to clean K-Mart’s store. She alleged that the defendant negligently left a liquid substance on the floor which caused her to slip and fall. Eighteen months after suit was filed, defendant filed a motion for summary judgment. Plaintiff had made no attempt to obtain discovery during the pendency of the case. Moreover, plaintiff issued no discovery during the two month time between the filing of defendant’s motion and the scheduled hearing date.  Plaintiff instead attempted to conduct discovery just days before the hearing. Ruling in favor of the defendant, the district court did not abuse its discretion in declining to permit additional discovery and granting defendant’s summary judgment.

McCastle-Getwood v. Professional Cleaning Control

Simone H. Yoder