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United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
February 17, 1993, Decided
CIVIL ACTION NO. 90-1154
Presently before [**2] the court are: (1) Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification, (2) Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike Dehors the Record Material in Defendants' Appendix to Defendants' Brief Opposing Class Certification, (3) Plaintiffs' Second and Third Motions to Compel, and (4) Defendants Motion for Protective Order. For the reasons stated herein, we will grant Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification in part and deny it in part, deny Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike, deny Plaintiffs' Motions to Compel, and grant in part and deny in part Defendants' Motion for a Protective Order.
This is an action for declaratory and injunctive relief and damages, brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§ 1985(3) and 1983, and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331 and 1343 (a)(1) and (a)(3).
Nominal plaintiff Marcia Welch is a former member of the Wildwood Golf Club in Allison Park, Pennsylvania, who sought to have her husband's membership transferred to her after their divorce. The defendants include the Board of Directors of the Wildwood Golf Club, a Pennsylvania corporation, and the Board of [**3] Directors of Stone Lodge, Inc., also a Pennsylvania corporation, which owns the Club real estate. Club memberships at Wildwood Golf Club ("Wildwood" or the "Club") are apparently broken down into the following classes: Class A, Class 2-A, Class B, Senior, Intermediate B, Intermediate A, Class C and Class D.
[*134] Marcia Welch and her ex-husband Thomas C. Welch both held a Class A membership. Plaintiffs allege that under the Club's by-laws, either gender may be Class 2-A members, and are therefore eligible to become a Class A member, however when a married couple applies for membership, the application and the membership is in the husband's name. Plaintiffs also allege that under the Club rules, only males can continue to be Class A members upon the death or divorce of the other spouse. Upon the nominal plaintiff's divorce, Wildwood refused to grant the transfer of membership and stock certificates from Mr. Welch to Ms. Welch, which both ex-spouses desired. Apparently the Family Division of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County ordered Wildwood to transfer the membership from Thomas Welch to plaintiff Welch's name. The Board of Directors refused to do so and told Ms. Welch that effective [**4] March 31, 1990 she was no longer a member of Wildwood.
It is further alleged that the 345 female spousal Class A members cannot golf on the weekends prior to 2:00 p.m., as is true of children golfers, unless accompanied by a male. Ms. Welch, a sales manager for a multi-national corporation, claims that her business relationships with clients have been harmed by the Club's policy of limiting women's tee off times and because she cannot conduct business in the "all male" 19th Hole bar and grill at Wildwood.
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146 F.R.D. 131 *; 1993 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 2223 **; 25 Fed. R. Serv. 3d (Callaghan) 1097
MARCIA WELCH, Individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plaintiff, v. BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF WILDWOOD GOLF CLUB, Individually and in their official capacities, and the Board of Directors of Stone Lodge, Inc., individually and in their official capacities, Defendants.
Disposition: [**1] It is hereby ORDERED, ADJUDGED and DECREED THAT: 1. Plaintiff's Motion for Class Certification be and hereby is GRANTED in part so that the class shall be defined as "all past and present female members of all classes of Wildwood Golf Club," and DENIED in part so that the class definition excludes "future female members of all classes of Wildwood Golf Club"; 2. Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike Dehors the Record Material in Defendants' Appendix to Defendants' Brief Opposing Class Certification be and hereby is DENIED; 3. Plaintiffs' Second and Third Motions to Compel be and hereby are DENIED; and 4. Defendants' Motion for Protective Order be and hereby is GRANTED in part and denied in part in accordance with our Opinion. Defendants shall draft an appropriate protective Order for the Court to sign.
Plaintiffs', class certification, membership, minutes, female member, Defendants', protective order, female, Golf, discovery, proposed class, parties, class action, motion to strike, by-laws, question of law, attorney-client, meetings, nominal plaintiff, past and present, class member, declarations, documents, spouses, rights, sex, member of the class, numerosity, adequate representation, certification
Civil Procedure, Special Proceedings, Class Actions, Certification of Classes, Prerequisites for Class Action, General Overview, Parties, Joinder of Parties, Numerosity, Constitutional Law, Equal Protection, Gender & Sex, Judicial Discretion, Adequacy of Representation, Predominance, Trials, Jury Trials, Province of Court & Jury, Superiority, Defenses, Demurrers & Objections, Motions to Strike, Immaterial Matters, Responses, Redundant Matters, Scandalous Matters, Discovery, Methods of Discovery, Discovery & Disclosure, Disclosure, Mandatory Disclosures, Privileged Communications, Relevance of Discoverable Information, Protective Orders