United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
MEMORANDUM AND RECOMMENDATION
S. CAYER, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
MATTER is before the Court on Defendant's “Motion
for Partial Dismissal of … Complaint” (document
#9), and the parties' associated briefs and
matter has been referred to the undersigned Magistrate Judge
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1), and this Motion is
now ripe for consideration.
fully considered the arguments, the record, and the
applicable authority, the undersigned respectfully recommends
that Defendant's Motion to Dismiss be denied, as
PROCEDURAL AND FACTUAL BACKGROUND
an action for age and gender discrimination. Accepting the
facts in the Complaint as true, Plaintiff was discharged by
Defendant on July 1, 2014.
September 26, 2016, Plaintiff filed this action in
Mecklenburg County Superior Court. The Complaint alleges
causes of action for wrongful discharge in violation of North
Carolina public policy as set forth in the North Carolina
Equal Employment Practices Act (“NCEEPA”), N.C.
G.S. § 143-422.2; age discrimination and retaliation in
violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of
1967, 29 U.S.C. § 621 et seq. (ADEA); and
discrimination and retaliation in violation of Title VII of
the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et
seq. (Title VII).
November 1, 2016, Defendant removed the state action to the
United States District Court for the Western District of
North Carolina alleging federal question jurisdiction.
Removal has not been challenged and appears proper.
January 9, 2017, Defendant filed its “Motion for
Partial Dismissal of … Complaint, ” asserting
that Plaintiff's state law wrongful discharge claim is
barred by the applicable statute of limitations. Defendant
contends that the statute of limitations on Plaintiff's
claim expired one year after her discharge on July 1, 2015.
Motion has been fully briefed and is now ripe for review.
reviewing a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, “the court should
accept as true all well-pleaded allegations and should view
the complaint in a light most favorable to the
plaintiff.” Mylan Labs., Inc. v. Matkari, 7
F.3d 1130, 1134 (4th Cir. 1993). The plaintiff's
“[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right
to relief above the speculative level.” Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007).
“[O]nce a claim has been stated adequately, it may be
supported by showing any set of facts consistent with the
allegations in the complaint.” Id. at 563. A
complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss will
survive if it contains enough facts to “state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft
v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). “A claim has facial
plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Iqbal, the Supreme Court articulated a two-step
process for determining whether a complaint meets this
plausibility standard. First, the court identifies
allegations that, because they are no more than conclusions,
are not entitled to the assumption of truth. Id.
“Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not
suffice.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550
U.S. at 555) (allegation that government officials adopted
challenged policy “because of” its adverse
effects on protected group was conclusory and not assumed to
be true). Although the pleading requirements stated in
“Rule 8 [of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure]
mark a notable and generous departure from the
hyper-technical, code-pleading regime of a prior era ... it
does not unlock the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed
with nothing more than conclusions.” Id. at
to the extent there are well-pleaded factual allegations, the
court should assume their truth and then determine whether
they plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief.
Id. at 679. “Determining whether a complaint
contains sufficient facts to state a plausible claim for
relief “will ... be a context-specific task that
requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense.” Id..
“Where the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court
to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the
complaint has alleged-but it ...