Bishop v. Mangal Bhai Enterprises, Inc., A89A1619

CourtUnited States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
Citation392 S.E.2d 535,194 Ga.App. 874
Docket NumberNo. A89A1619,A89A1619
Decision Date20 February 1990

Page 535

392 S.E.2d 535
194 Ga.App. 874

No. A89A1619.
Court of Appeals of Georgia.
Feb. 20, 1990.
Rehearing Denied March 15, 1990.
Certiorari Denied April 12, 1990.

Page 536

[194 Ga.App. 878] David H. Fink, Atlanta, for appellant.

Savell & Williams, Tash J. Van Dora, Michael Ryder, William S. Goodman, Atlanta, for appellee.

[194 Ga.App. 874] BEASLEY, Judge.

Bishop appeals the grant of summary judgment to Mangal Bhai Enterprises, Inc., d/b/a Passport Inn, and the denial of his motion for summary judgment. Bishop's motion dealt solely with his status, whether invitee or licensee, which was also at issue in Mangal's motion.

1. Inn owner Patel's deposition was filed of record before the order was entered, although it was not ordered unsealed until later, for delivery to this court. The order granting summary judgment stated that it was entered "after careful review of the record and all briefs and affidavits submitted." The Supreme Court set the policy that: "If a trial court indicates in his order granting a motion for summary judgment that the motion is being granted after a review of the record, this court will not hold that he failed to review the relevant portions of a deposition simply because the original of the deposition on file in the case remained sealed and was not opened until after the order granting the motion was entered." General Motors v. Walker, 244 Ga. 191, 193, 259 S.E.2d 449 (1979); Bailey v. Johnson, 245 Ga. 823, 829(6), 268 S.E.2d 147 (1980). This court follows the same policy. See, e.g., Light v. Equitable Mtg., etc., 191 Ga.App. 816, 817(1), 383 S.E.2d 142 (1989); compare Maddox v. Brown, 188 Ga.App. 728, 374 S.E.2d 222 (1988). Even absent such a recital, there is the legal presumption that the trial court considered the entire record before rendering its decision. Calhoun v. Bone, 189 Ga.App. 396, 398(1), 375 S.E.2d 871 (1988). That case illustrates the awkward problems caused by failure to incorporate into the open record all documents

Page 537

upon which a ruling on summary judgment depends.

The deposition of Bishop, referred to by both parties, could not have been considered by the trial court. It was not filed with the court below and ordered unsealed until after the grant of summary judgment. It may be considered here, however, to determine whether there remains an issue of material fact for determination below. Miller Grading, etc. v. Ga. Fed., etc., Assn., 247 Ga. 730, 733(3), 279 S.E.2d 442 (1981). To a great extent, summary judgment appeals are de novo reviews because summary judgment rulings are strictly matters of law and are not based at all on findings of fact, made by court or jury, nor on weighing of evidence, nor on credibility of witnesses. Summary judgment rulings are based on undisputed facts.

2. As to the grant of summary judgment to Mangal, the evidence is viewed with all inferences and reasonable doubts in favor of Bishop. Eiberger v. West, 247 Ga. 767, 769(1), 281 S.E.2d 148 (1981). " 'To entitle the defendant to a summary judgment the undisputed facts as disclosed by the pleadings and evidence must negate at least [194 Ga.App. 875] one essential element entitling plaintiff to recovery and under every theory fairly drawn from the pleadings and evidence (cits.) and if necessary, prove the negative or nonexistence of an essential element affirmatively asserted by the plaintiff.' [Cit.]" (Emphasis omitted.) Waller v. Transworld Imports, 155 Ga.App. 438, 439, 271 S.E.2d 1 (1980); Tolbert v. Tanner, 180 Ga.App. 441, 444(2b), 349 S.E.2d 463 (1986). " 'Summary judgment should be granted only in those cases where ... undisputable, plain and palpable facts exist on which reasonable minds could not differ as to the conclusion to be reached,' [Cit.]" Indian Trail Village v. Smith, 139 Ga.App. 691, 693(2), 229 S.E.2d 508 (1976).

Bishop was manager of the Country Cupboard Restaurant adjacent to the Passport Inn. The restaurant premises were leased from Patel and were connected to the lobby. On March 26, 1987, Hutton was the clerk at the Passport Inn at the Locust Grove exit on I-75. She had been in training for two weeks and had come on duty that night at 10:00 p.m. Bishop came to the lobby to inquire about a package for the restaurant which had been delivered to the motel and signed for by Hutton. After discussing this, Hutton asked Bishop to bring her a soft drink from the restaurant. After 11:00 p.m., a man walked into the lobby and asked for a room. As she turned to get the key, a second man entered the lobby just as Bishop was approaching with the soft drink. The second man directed Bishop to crawl over the counter. As he was doing so, the man, a robber, shot him in the back with a shotgun.

Patel, one of the two stockholders in Mangal, lived on the premises and oversaw the motel business, including hiring all employees. Hutton had asked him what to do in the event of a robbery but had never been given any instructions. She had not been told to lock the front doors to the lobby at night, nor how to use the night window. It had been installed to preclude robbers' access to the lobby after the doors were locked but still allow the transaction of business with customers.

Patel had worked in the motel business since 1983, owning and operating other motels, including the Locust Grove Scottish Inn, before buying the Passport Inn. He knew many motel owners on I-75 and was aware that there had been armed robberies at some of them. The practice in the industry is to lock the lobby at 11:00 p.m. and use the night window to protect against robberies. There had been robberies in 1983 at...

To continue reading

Request your trial
42 cases
  • Adams v. Sears, Roebuck & Co.
    • United States
    • Georgia Court of Appeals
    • July 16, 1997
    ... ... Martinez, 224 Ga.App. 137, 138(2), 479 S.E.2d 432; Bishop v. Mangal Bhai Enterprises, 194 Ga.App. 874(1), 392 S.E.2d ... Amax, Inc., 160 Ga.App. 692, 695, 288 S.E.2d 49), but it is only ... ...
  • Slater v. McKinsey & Company, Inc. United States
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Northern District of Georgia
    • March 30, 2021
    ...question of law. Boulware v. Quiktrip Corp. , 226 Ga. App. 399, 399, 486 S.E.2d 662, 663 (1997) (citing Bishop v. Mangal Bhai Enterprises , 194 Ga. App. 874 (1), 392 S.E.2d 535 (1990) ). The Parties dispute the applicability of the Georgia Workers' Compensation Act ("GWCA") and whether prov......
  • Hartley v. Macon Bacon Tune, Inc.
    • United States
    • Georgia Court of Appeals
    • September 25, 1998
    ...summary judgment was not appropriate even assuming without deciding that Hartley was a licensee.3 Bishop v. Mangal Bhai Enterprises, 194 Ga.App. 874, 876(2), 392 S.E.2d 535 (1990). An owner or occupier is subject to liability to a licensee for injury caused by a condition on the property, b......
  • Jordan v. City of Rome
    • United States
    • Georgia Court of Appeals
    • March 20, 1992
    ...S.E.2d 336 (1976); Savannah Bank, etc., Co. v. Weiner, 193 Ga.App. 616, 617(1), 388 S.E.2d 725 (1989); Bishop v. Mangal Bhai Enterprises, 194 Ga.App. 874, 878, 392 S.E.2d 535 (1990). If a duty was owed and breached, then the issues of proximate cause and injury would have to be reached. As ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT