This Note examines the claim that judges have improperly granted summary judgment where a reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party. It begins by reviewing the literature on summary judgment, particularly three opinions the Supreme Court issued in 1986, as well as claims about the propriety of summary judgment in fact- intensive civil rights cases. To test these claims, this Note compiles cases where summary judgment was reversed and where the jury returned a verdict for the nonmovant, which together indicate improperly granted summary judgment. Finding a number of such cases, including a higher-than-projected concentration of civil rights cases, this Note concludes by considering implications for civil rights litigation and federal civil procedure.
Columbia Law Review WHAT WOULD A REASONABLE JURY DO? JURY VERDICTS FOLLOWING SUMMARY JUDGMENT REVERSALS