United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lake Charles Division
EVELYN C. JEANE, ET AL.
WAL-MART STORES, INC.; ET AL.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
KATHLEEN`KAY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
the court are Motions for Summary Judgment [docs. 109, 113]
filed, respectively, by maintenance subcontractor Master
Technicians and Mechanical, LLC (“Master Tech”)
and its insurer, Federated Service Insurance Company
“movants”). The motions relate to defendant
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and Wal-Mart of Louisiana, LLC's
(“Wal -Mart”) cross-claim against Master Tech for
defense and indemnity.
action arises from an accident allegedly suffered by
plaintiff Evelyn C. Jeane at a Wal-Mart store in Leesville,
Louisiana, in June 2016. Doc. 1. She alleges that she was
injured after slipping in the produce aisle, in a liquid
possibly spilled by Master Tech. Doc. 1, att. 2, p. 4.
Accordingly, Jeane and her husband filed suit against
Wal-Mart, Master Tech, and Federated in the 30th Judicial
District Court, Vernon Parish, Louisiana, on May 30, 2017.
Id. at 3-7. Wal-Mart then removed the suit to this
court based on federal diversity jurisdiction, 28 U.S.C.
filed a cross-claim (and amendments thereto) against movants,
alleging that they are contractually obligated to defend and
indemnify Wal-Mart in this suit under the terms of Wal- Mart
and Master Tech's Master Service Agreement
(“MSA”). Docs. 20, 31, 103. Movants now request
summary judgment on this cross-claim. Docs. 109, 113. Master
Tech asserts that the indemnification clause of the MSA is
unenforceable as a matter of law. Doc. 109, att. 1. Federated
maintains that Wal-Mart does not qualify as an additional
insured under the policy it issued to Master Tech. Doc. 113,
att. 1. Wal-Mart opposes both motions, which are now fully
briefed and ripe for review.
should grant a motion for summary judgment when 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.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. The party moving for
summary judgment is initially responsible for identifying
portions of pleadings and discovery that show the lack of a
genuine issue of material fact. Tubacex, Inc. v. M/V
Risan, 5 F.3d 951');">45 F.3d 951, 954 (5th Cir. 1995). The court must
deny the motion for summary judgment if the movant fails to
meet this burden. Id.
movant makes this showing, however, the burden then shifts to
the non-moving party to “set forth specific facts
showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.”
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 505');">106 S.Ct. 2505,
2511 (1986) (quotations omitted). This requires more than
mere allegations or denials of the adverse party's
pleadings. Instead, the nonmovant must submit
“significant probative evidence” in support of
his claim. State Farm Life Ins. Co. v. Gutterman,
896 F.2d 116, 118 (5th Cir. 1990). “If the evidence is
merely colorable, or is not significantly probative, summary
judgment may be granted.” Anderson, 106 S.Ct.
at 2511 (citations omitted).
may not make credibility determinations or weigh the evidence
in ruling on a motion for summary judgment. Reeves v.
Sanderson Plumbing Prods., Inc., 120 S.Ct. 2097, 2110
(2000). The court is also required to view all evidence in
the light most favorable to the non- moving party and draw
all reasonable inferences in that party's favor.
Clift v. Clift, 210 F.3d 268, 270 (5th Cir. 2000).
Under this standard, a genuine issue of material fact exists
if a reasonable trier of fact could render a verdict for the
nonmoving party. Brumfield v. Hollins, 551 F.3d 322');">551 F.3d 322,
326 (5th Cir. 2008).
Enforceability of ...