Summary Judgment Analysis
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Summary Judgment Analysis Components
1. Summary Judgment Standard
2. Moving Party's initial burden
3. Non-moving party's burden
4. Overall Analysis
Summary Judgment Standard
- SJ should be granted if:
- - No genuine issue of material fact
- - AND moving party entitled to judgment as matter of law.
Essentially: SJ appropriate if based on evidence presented, no reasonable jury could find in favor of the non-moving party.
Court must view evidence in light most favorable to nonmoving party. (Can't weigh evidence or make credibility determinations)
Moving Party's Initial Burden
- - Tied to burdens of proof at trial.
- - In general, party making claim against another bears BoP at trial on that claim.
- If moving party HAS BoP at trial on claim for which seeking SJ, then moving party can satisfy initial burden only one way:
- - Present Affirmative Evidence establishing that no reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party.
- If moving party DOES NOT HAVE BoP at trial on SJ claim, then he can carry his initial burden in 1 of 2 ways:
- 1. Present affirmative evidence to show NMP can't prove claim
- 2. OR, point to NMP's lack fo sufficient evidence to prove an essential element of the claim.
Non-Moving Party's Burden
- If MP carries initial burden, then burden shifts to NMP to present evidence sufficient to create a genuine issue of material fact.
- - Arguments, briefs, pleadings, conclusory allegations not enough, must present evidence.
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