United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
Vascura Magistrate Judge.
OPINION & ORDER
ALGENON L. MARBLEY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Defendant Frank Bove's
Motion for Summary Judgment. (ECF No. 33). The Reeds are
suing Frank Bove for negligence. For the reasons that follow,
this Court GRANTS Defendant's Motion.
case arises from an ATV accident in Meigs County, Ohio. On
April 23, 2015, Frank Bove arrived at James and Terry
Reed's property. Mr. Bove was interested in purchasing
some of the Reeds' property. Because Mr. Reed was
unavailable to meet Mr. Bove and show him the property, Mr.
Reed's minor son, Hunter, met Mr. Bove instead. (ECF No.
3 at ¶¶ 4-8).
Reed's property is expansive. The Reeds allege that they
told Mr. Bove he would need to bring an ATV with him when he
visited the property. Mr. Bove did not do so. (ECF No. 3 at
¶¶ 6-10). Hunter Reed had one ATV available and
looked for another ATV when Mr. Bove arrived. (Id.
at ¶¶ 11, 13). Finding only one ATV, Reed and Mr.
Bove decided they would both ride the same ATV. Reed was
sitting in the front and was driving the ATV. (ECF No. 33-1
at 2; ECF No. 3 at ¶ 21). Reed and Mr. Bove descended a
hill, and Reed lost control of the ATV.
alleges that Mr. Bove “became agitated, excited and/or
attempted to take control of the” vehicle. (ECF No. 3
at ¶ 21). The ATV crashed and both Bove and Reed were
Reed, James Reed, and Terry Reed sued Mr. Bove and other
unidentified defendants in the Meigs County Court of Common
Pleas in January 2017. Hunter Reed claimed compensatory and
punitive damages against the Defendants for negligence. Terry
and James Reed claimed damages for negligent infliction of
emotional distress and loss of consortium. Bove removed the
case to this Court on February 27, 2017, invoking this
Court's diversity jurisdiction. (ECF No. 1).
Bove then filed a Motion for Summary Judgment. (ECF No. 33).
James and Terry Reed dismissed their claim for negligent
infliction of emotional distress. (ECF No. 41). The Motion
for Summary Judgment is fully briefed and ripe for review.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
federal court sitting in diversity jurisdiction applies the
federal standard for summary judgment. See Biegas v.
Quickway Carriers, Inc., 573 F.3d 365, 374 (6th Cir.
2009). Summary judgment is appropriate “if the movant
shows that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact
and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. A fact is material only if it
“might affect the outcome of the lawsuit under the
governing substantive law.” Wiley v. United
States, 20 F.3d 222, 224 (6th Cir. 1994) (citing
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248
(1986)). In evaluating a motion for summary judgment, the
evidence must be viewed in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party. S.E.C. v. Sierra Brokerage Servs.,
Inc., 712 F.3d 321, 327 (6th Cir. 2013).
party seeking summary judgment bears the initial burden of
presenting law and argument in support of its motion as well
as identifying the relevant portions of “‘the
pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and
admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if
any,' which it believes demonstrate the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact.” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P.
56). If the moving party satisfies this initial burden, then
the nonmoving party must present “significant probative
evidence” to show that “there is [more than] some
metaphysical doubt as to the material facts.” Moore
v. Philip Morris Cos., Inc., 8 F.3d 335, 340 (6th Cir.
1993). The mere possibility of a factual dispute is
insufficient to defeat a motion for summary judgment. See
Mitchell v. Toledo Hospital, 964 F.2d 577, 582 (6th Cir.
judgment is inappropriate, however, “if the dispute
about a material fact is ‘genuine,' that is, if the
evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a
verdict for the nonmoving party.” Anderson,
477 U.S. at 248. The necessary inquiry for this Court is
“whether ‘the evidence presents a sufficient
disagreement to require submission to a jury or whether it is
so one-sided that one party must prevail as a matter of
law.'” Patton v. Bearden, 8 F.3d 343, 346
(6th Cir. 1993) (quoting Anderson, 477 U.S. at
251-52). The mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in
support of the opposing party's position is not enough to
survive summary judgment; there must be evidence on which the
jury could reasonably find for the opposing party. See
Anderson, 477 U.S. at 251; Copeland v.
Machulis, 57 F.3d 476, 479 (6th Cir. 1995). It is proper
to enter summary judgment against a party “who fails to
make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
element essential to that party's case, and on which that
party will bear the burden of proof at trial.”
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
Where the nonmoving party has “failed to make a
sufficient showing on an essential element of her case with
respect to which she has the burden of proof, ” the
moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.
Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322 (quoting Anderson,
477 U.S. at 250).
LAW & ANALYSIS
Bove filed a Motion for Summary Judgment on three grounds:
(1) the Reeds were required to file any claims against him as
compulsory counterclaims in his earlier-filed state lawsuit;
(2) Mr. Bove was not negligent; and (3) the negligent
infliction of emotional distress claims should be dismissed.
(ECF No. 33-1 at 6). This last argument is now moot ...