COA reverses summary judgment for NCAA on negligence claim

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A woman who was injured at a fencing event at the University of Notre Dame should have been granted more time to present relevant materials in opposition to the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s motion for summary judgment on her negligence claim, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.

Lydia Lanni was struck in the left eye by a fencing saber, causing a severe injury, while she was at an allegedly NCAA-sanctioned fencing match at Notre Dame. The NCAA denies that it was involved with the match. She sued alleging negligence by the NCAA. It filed a motion to dismiss and/or motion for summary judgment. The NCAA attached the affidavit of Kelly Whitaker Shaul, the NCAA’s fencing championships manager, to its motion.

Lanni sought an extension to respond to the NCAA’s motion, arguing discovery was still ongoing. The trial court granted the NCAA’s motion to stay discovery pending the ruling on the motion for summary judgment. The trial court granted the NCAA’s motion for summary judgment.

Lanni argued that she hadn’t received any notice that the trial court would treat the combined motion as a summary judgment motion and that she had a lack of opportunity to conduct discovery.

In Lydia Lanni v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, et al., 49A05-1208-CT-392, the judges found that the trial court’s treatment of the NCAA’s motion for summary judgment was proper because evidence outside the pleading was presented and not excluded by the trial court. But, the conversion from a Trial Rule 12(B)(6) motion to a Trial Rule 56 motion requires the trial court to give all parties reasonable opportunity to present all pertinent material.

The NCAA argued that Lanni’s discovery requests were nothing more than generic form requests, but the “NCAA’s self-serving interpretation of what issues are ‘material’ to the cause should not be prevailing,” Judge Patricia Riley wrote. “Here, the NCAA’s motions, granted by the trial court, effectively prevented Lanni from conducting any discovery, let alone any reasonable discovery.”

The judges also found the trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying Lanni’s request to strike Shaul’s affidavit. White it might contain some generalized statements, they are nevertheless credible and clearly based on personal knowledge stemming from the position she holds, and as such are admissible evidence.

The case is remanded for further proceedings.



Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. Heritage, what Heritage? The New Age is dawning .... an experiment in disordered liberty and social fragmentation is upon us .... "Carmel City Council approved a human rights ordinance with a 4-3 vote Monday night after hearing about two hours of divided public testimony. The ordinance bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, among other traits. Council members Rick Sharp, Carol Schleif, Sue Finkam and Ron Carter voted in favor of it. The three council members opposing it—Luci Snyder, Kevin Rider and Eric Seidensticker—all said they were against any form of discrimination, but had issues with the wording and possible unintended consequences of the proposal." Kardashian is the new Black.

  2. Can anyone please tell me if anyone is appealing the law that certain sex offenders can't be on school property. How is somebody supposed to watch their children's sports games or graduations, this law needs revised such as sex offenders that are on school property must have another non-offender adult with them at all times while on school property. That they must go to the event and then leave directly afterwards. This is only going to hurt the children of the offenders and the father/ son mother/ daughter vice versa relationship. Please email me and let me know if there is a group that is appealing this for reasons other than voting and religion. Thank you.

  3. Should any attorney who argues against the abortion industry, or presents arguments based upon the Founders' concept of Higher Law, (like that marriage precedes the State) have to check in with the Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program for a mandatory mental health review? Some think so ... that could certainly cut down on cases such as this "cluttering up" the SCOTUS docket ... use JLAP to deny all uber conservative attorneys licenses and uber conservative representation will tank. If the ends justify the means, why not?

  4. Tell them sherry Mckay told you to call, they're trying to get all the people that have been wronged and held unlawfully to sign up on this class action lawsuit.

  5. Call Young and Young aAttorneys at Law theres ones handling a class action lawsuit