United States District Court, D. Arizona
G. Campbell Senior United States District Judge
case arises out of Plaintiff's eviction from a mobile
home park. Although the complaint is not entirely clear,
Plaintiff appears to allege retaliation under the Fair
Housing Act (“FHA”) for making a
disability-related complaint. Defendants move for summary
judgment. Doc. 56. The motion is fully briefed (Docs. 65, 66)
and oral argument has not been requested. The Court will
grant the motion.
Summary Judgment Standard.
seeking summary judgment “bears the initial
responsibility of informing the district court of the basis
for its motion, and identifying those portions of [the
record] which it believes demonstrate the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact.” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). Summary judgment is
appropriate if the evidence, viewed in the light most
favorable to the nonmoving party, 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(a). Rule 56 further provides:
If a party fails to . . . properly address another
party's assertion of fact as required by Rule 56(c), the
court may . . . consider the fact undisputed for purposes of
the motion [or] grant summary judgment if the motion and
supporting materials - including the facts considered
undisputed - show that the movant is entitled to it[.]
Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e)(3). Thus, the party opposing summary
judgment “may not rest upon the mere allegations or
denials of [the party's] pleadings, but . . . must set
forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine
issue for trial.” Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v.
Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 n.11 (1986)
(emphasis added); see LRCiv 56.1(b) (requiring the
party opposing summary judgment to present evidence that
establishes a genuine issue of material fact or otherwise
precludes judgment in favor of the moving party).
moved for summary judgment on March 15, 2019. Doc. 56.
Although Plaintiff responded, she did not comply with Local
Rule of Civil Procedure 56.1. Despite being warned to do so,
Plaintiff has not filed a separate statement of facts with
numbered paragraphs corresponding to the separate statement
of facts that has been filed by Defendants. See Doc.
63 at 2. The Court informed Plaintiff of her burden:
[Y]ou must set out specific facts in declarations,
depositions, answers to interrogatories, or authenticated
documents, as provided in Rule 56(e) of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure, that contradict the facts set forth in the
declarations and documents filed by Defendant(s), and show
that there is a genuine issue of material fact for trial. If
you do not submit your own evidence in opposition, summary
judgment, if appropriate, may be entered against you. If
summary judgment is granted, your case will be dismissed and
there will be no trial.
Id. Despite including some evidence in her response
(see Doc. 65 at 5), Plaintiff provides no
declarations, depositions, answers to interrogatories, or
authenticated documents as provided in Rule 56(e).
Nevertheless, the Court will consider the evidence that
Plaintiff has provided and will address the motion on the
merits. Based on Defendants' supporting evidence (Doc.
57) and Plaintiff's cursory statement of facts (Doc. 65
at 5), the following facts are undisputed unless otherwise
has a number of medical conditions that significantly affect
her mobility, including lupus, coronary artery disease,
congenital heart failure, diabetes, blindness, COPD, asthma,
and kidney disease. Doc. 57 ¶ 1. Plaintiff rented a
mobile home lot at the Broadway Estates Mobile Home Park
(“the Park”) and owned the mobile home that
occupied the lot. Doc. 56 at 1. The lot frequently flooded
around Plaintiff's driveway, with the flooding so severe
that it covered the back stairs and the metal ramp she used
for her electric wheelchair. Doc. 65 at 2. This affected her
ability to come and go from her mobile home. Id. In
September 2015, Plaintiff complained to the park manager
about the flooding and threatened to file an Americans with
Disabilities Act (“ADA”) complaint if it was not
resolved. Doc. 57 ¶ 3. The Park attempted to fix the
problem by placing gravel around her property and the City of
Mesa cleared some drainage. Id. ¶ 4.
paid the monthly rent for her lot by check in July, August,
September, and October of 2015. Id. ¶¶ 2,
5. In November, however, Plaintiff requested the Park to
withdraw her rent directly from her bank account.
Id. ¶ 6. The electronic withdrawal was declined
for insufficient funds and she did not attempt to pay by
check. Id. ¶¶ 7-8. Plaintiff disputes that
there were insufficient funds in her account to pay the
November rent. Doc. 65 ¶ 1. In November and December,
Plaintiff went to stay with her daughter, a state-licensed
caregiver, for the holidays. Doc. 57 ¶¶ 9-10. In
January 2016, Plaintiff was hospitalized for ten days and
thereafter went to live with her daughter full-time.
Id. ¶¶ 11-12. During this time Plaintiff
moved out of the Park and did not return. Id. ¶
February 2016, Plaintiff informed Defendants that she would
not make any further payments. Id. ¶ 14. The
Park then brought an eviction action in justice court
alleging that Plaintiff had failed to pay rent as agreed.
Id. ¶ 17. Plaintiff failed to appear and the
court entered default judgment against her on February 18,
2016. Id. ¶¶ 16-17.
April 2016, Plaintiff filed a state court complaint seeking
to reverse the eviction judgment, which was dismissed as
untimely and with prejudice in June 2016. Id.
¶¶ 18- 19. In October 2016, Plaintiff filed a
complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban
Development and with the Civil Rights Division of the Arizona