Missouri Motions for Summary Judgment - More “Elementary” Than Ever Now
Recently, a Missouri court sent a slip and fall case to trial because defense counsel did not set out “elements facts” in their summary judgment motion. Custer v. Wal-Mart Stores East I, LP, 492 S.W.3d 212, 215 (Mo. Ct. App. S.D. 2016). The plaintiff testified she felt an onion or lettuce leaf under her foot, which caused her to slip. In response, defense counsel pointed out plaintiff testified in her deposition she had not actually seen the offending produce. Unfortunately for the defendant, the court ruled this was not enough.
So what are “elements facts”? For starters, in Missouri, each essential part of a claim must be based on fact. These “elements facts” must be documents or sworn affidavits—deposition testimony is not enough. However, deposition testimony supported by elements facts does meet the newly articulated standard. If you have additional questions, please reach out to Bryan R. Kelly or Wallace Saunders’ Litigation Group. We are ready to “Partner with You.”