United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
SMITTY'S SUPPLY, INC.
LINDSAY MORGAN HEGNA
ORDER AND REASONS
ANN VIAL LEMMON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
HEREBY ORDERED that Smitty's Supply, Inc.'s
("Smitty's") Motion for Partial Summary
Judgment Regarding Claims of Oral Contract (Rec. Doc. 225) is
Kelley and Hegna (hereinafter, sometimes collectively
"plaintiffs") have filed suit against
Smitty's alleging, inter alia, that Smitty's
breached an oral employment agreement to establish a Phantom
Stock Plan and a Stock Appreciation Rights Plan
(collectively, "Stock Plans"), implement the Stock
Plans, and designate plaintiffs as participants in the Stock
has filed the instant motion arguing that it is entitled to
summary judgment dismissing all claims against it based upon
oral contracts. Kelly and Hegna oppose the motion. For the
reasons which follow, the court denies the motion.
gravamen of plaintiffs' breach of contract claims is that
Smitty's, through its sole owner, Edgar Smith, III, made
an oral promise to create the Stock Plans and name both
Kelley and Hegna as participants at a 5% level in each plan,
and Smitty's breached its agreement by its failure to do
argues that it is entitled to summary judgment dismissing
plaintiff's oral contract claims due to the lack of
corroborating evidence confirming the alleged oral
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that the
"court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows
that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and
the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law."
Granting a motion for summary judgment is proper if the
pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories,
admissions on file, and affidavits filed in support of the
motion demonstrate that there is no genuine issue as to any
material fact that the moving party is entitled to judgment
as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 106 S.Ct. 2505, 2509-10 (1986). The
court must find "[a] factual dispute . . . [to be]
'genuine' if the evidence is such that a reasonable
jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party . . .
[and a] fact . . . [to be] 'material' if it might
affect the outcome of the suit under the governing
substantive law." Beck v. Somerset Techs.,
Inc., 882 F.2d 993, 996 (5th Cir. 1989) (citing
Anderson, 106 S.Ct. at 2510).
moving party meets the initial burden of establishing that
there is no genuine issue, the burden shifts to the
non-moving party to produce evidence of the existence of a
genuine issue for trial. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,
106 S. t. 2548, 2552 (1986). The non-movant cannot satisfy
the summary judgment burden with conclusory allegations,
unsubstantiated assertions, or only a scintilla of evidence.
Little v. Liquid Air Corp., 37 F.3d 1069, 1075 (5th
Cir. 1994) (en banc). If the opposing party bears the burden
of proof at trial, the moving party does not have to submit
evidentiary documents properly to support its motion, but
need only point out the absence of evidence supporting the
essential elements of the opposing party's case.
Saunders v. Michelin Tire Corp., 942 F.2d 299, 301
(5th Cir. 1991).
claiming the existence of a contract has the burden of
proving that the contract was perfected. La. Civ. Code art.
1831. An oral contract valued in excess of $500 must be
proved by at least ...