B.C. man remains kicked out of pickleball association after feud plays out in court

In a judgement handed down Oct. 23 in Supreme Court by Justice Sheri Ann Donegan, Lane Roberts’ claim against the association was dismissed in its entirety.

A former member took the Vernon Pickleball Association to court, alleging oppression and unfair prejudice, after he was removed from the association for being “unsportsmanlike.”

In a judgement handed down Oct. 23 in Supreme Court by Justice Sheri Ann Donegan, Lane Roberts’ claim against the association was dismissed in its entirety.

According to court documents, Roberts was a pickleball association member since Nov. 4, 2015. However, his membership was revoked after the association received several complaints from fellow members about his conduct. According to complaints, Roberts gave unsolicited coaching of players, displayed unsportsmanlike conduct, and brought his dog to games and caused disruptions.

Roberts was suspended temporarily as a result before further complaints were received. His membership was terminated in October 2017.

In his claim against the association, Roberts sought the restoration of his membership, the lift of his lifetime ban, the removal of the no unsolicited coaching rule, suspesnsions and fines for the defendants and that the VPA be fined the cost of his membership in the organization and all costs pertaining to playing pickleball in all seasons for the remainder of his life.

“Roberts’ overarching complaint here is that he had a reasonable expectation that the VPA would be run in a fair and orderly manner in accordance with its Constitution and Bylaws. His particular complaints revolve around his fundamental disagreement with the VPA’s characterization of his conduct as contrary to the Code of Conduct. Rather, he asserts that it was actually the defendants and/or other members who behaved in manners that contravened the Code of Conduct, were oppressive, unfair, and, at times, acted outside the realm of the lawful authority of the VPA,” Justice Donegal said in her reasons for judgement.

Related: Vernon Pickleball Association forges ahead with dedicated pickleball courts

Related: Paving the way for pickleball in Vernon

“When I examine all of the evidence carefully, I conclude the directors of the VPA were acting in what they believed to be the best interests of the VPA, in accordance with its Constitution. They were required to act upon a number of member complaints levied against Mr. Roberts. They acted in a manner consistent with the VPA’s Constitution, Bylaws and Code of Conduct. In other words, they were not acting in bad faith, unfairly, or oppressively toward him.”

Justice Donegal said evidence showed Roberts repeatedly breached the VPA Code of Conduct and the directors acted within their authority when the decision was made not to renew his association membership.

“As the defendants have established, Mr. Roberts has not been banned from playing this sport for life, as he alleges. He is not precluded from playing the sport in other associations or privately with other acquaintances, including current VPA members, if they so choose. There are other local pickleball clubs in the area and a variety of tennis courts painted with pickleball lines. The VPA currently uses the courts during certain timeframes each day and otherwise the courts are available to the public,” Justice Donegal said.

“In the end, there is simply no basis for any claim that the VPA or the individual defendants have behaved in an oppressive or unfairly prejudicial manner toward Mr. Roberts.”


@VernonNews
newstips@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Nuslhiixwta – A Place of Treasures – celebrates new name

After months of thought and deliberation, Healthy Beginnings now has a new name.

It’s the last day to vote in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots must now be dropped off in person to meet the deadline of 4:30 p.m.

North Coast First Nation chief says one major oil spill could ruin economy forever

Chief Marilyn Slett of Heiltsuk Nation near Bella Bella is leading a delegation in Ottawa this week

How to decide what to vote for in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots are due at Elections BC on Friday, Dec. 7, at 4:30 p.m.

Northern Health investigates racist posts of possible employee

Facebook comments call for segregated health authorities

VIDEO: Close encounter with a whale near Canada-U.S border

Ron Gillies had his camera ready when a whale appeared Dec. 7

B.C. Lions hire DeVone Claybrooks as head coach

Former Stampeders DC succeeds CFL legend Wally Buono

France shooting: 2 dead, several wounded in Strasbourg

A world-famous Christmas market was put on lock down on Tuesday

Canadian warship witnesses possible violations of North Korea sanctions

Crew members on HMCS Calgary took photos and collected other information

Christine Sinclair named Canadian Women’s player of the year again

This is the 14th time Sinclair has been named player of the year

B.C. man wants trapping laws changed after dog killed

Louis Seguin’s 10-month-old Australian shepherd died in a body-gripping trap last month

Nearly 8,000 homeless in B.C., first province-wide count reveals

Twenty-four seperate counts in B.C. cities found there are thousands of homeless in all corners of province

UPDATE: B.C. judge grants $10M bail for Huawei executive wanted by U.S.

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Most Read