Cindy A. Caruso, et al. Appellants
Erie Shoreline Properties, LLC, et al. Appellees
Court No. 16CV209
J. Zeiher and Zachary E. Dusza, for appellants.
Michael P. Gilbride, for appellees.
DECISION AND JUDGMENT
1} Cindy A. Caruso and her husband, Frank Caruso,
appeal from the December 11, 2017 judgment entry of the
Ottawa County Court of Common Pleas which granted summary
judgment to Erie Shoreline Properties, LLC ("Erie")
Lakeshore Investments, LLC ("Moore") on Mrs.
Caruso's personal injury claim. For the following
reasons, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.
2} On September 20, 2015, Mrs. Caruso fell and
fractured her ankle while playing a round of putt-putt golf
at Island Adventures Putt-Putt Golf Course in Catawba Island,
Ottawa County, Ohio ("Island Adventures"). Island
Adventures is owned and operated by Erie and Moore.
3} On July 18, 2016, the Carusos filed a complaint
against Erie and Moore. The complaint alleged that Erie and
Moore were "negligent in the construction and
maintenance of the golf course and in violating Ohio Building
Code Section 1013.1" and "negligent per se in the
construction of the raised green, in failing to provide
guards." The Carusos further alleged that as a direct
and proximate result of the negligence, Mrs. Caruso sustained
"painful personal injuries, " and incurred medical
expenses and "loss of the enjoyment of life." The
Carusos further alleged that Mr. Caruso "lost the care,
comfort, society, affection and consortium of his wife."
Erie and Moore filed an answer denying the allegations and
setting forth a number of affirmative defenses.
4} On March 29, 2017, Erie and Moore filed a motion
for summary judgment, which was granted by the trial court.
Caruso appeals, raising one assignment of error for our
The trial court committed reversible error when it found that
there is no issue of material of [sic] fact yet to be
litigated and that Defendants are entitled to judgment as a
matter of law.
5} Caruso contends that the trial court erred in
granting summary judgment, because it incorrectly concluded
that the hazard had been open and obvious; alternatively, she
argues that the trial court erred in finding no genuine issue
of material fact as to whether attendant circumstances
excused her failure to recognize the open and obvious hazard.
Finally, she argues that fall would have been prevented had
Erie and Moore installed a guard required by the Ohio Basic
6} Our standard of review for summary judgment is
the same as that of the trial court. We review cases "de
novo, governed by the standard set forth in Civ.R. 56."
Comer v. Risko, 106 Ohio St.3d 185, 186,
2005-Ohio-4559, 833 N.E.2d 712. Applying Civ.R. 56(C),
summary judgment is appropriate where: (1) there is no
genuine issue as to any material fact; (2) the moving party
is entitled to judgment as a matter of law; and (3)
reasonable minds can come to only one conclusion, and that
conclusion is adverse to the nonmoving party. Bostic v.
Connor, 37 Ohio St.3d 144, 146524 N.E.2d 881 (1988).
7} In any negligence action, the plaintiff must
demonstrate the existence of a duty, a breach of that duty,
and an injury proximately resulting from the breach of the
duty. Mussivand v. David, 45 Ohio St.3d 314, 318,
544 N.E.2d 265 (1989); Jeffers v. Olexo, 43 Ohio
St.3d 140, 142, 539 N.E.2d 614 (1989).
8} Under the common law related to premises
liability, the status of a person who enters on land
determines the nature and extent of the legal duty owed to
him or her. Shump v. First Continental-Robinwood
Assocs.,71 Ohio St.3d 414, 417, 644 N.E.2d 291 (1994).
In this case, there is no dispute that Mrs. Caruso was a
business invitee. Thus, Erie and Moore could expect ...