United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
D. Whitney, United States District Judge.
MATTER is before the Court on Defendant's Motion to
Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint (Doc. No. 1) pursuant to
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) and (6) for lack of
subject matter jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim
upon which relief can be granted. Because Plaintiff appears
pro se, the Court issued a Roseboro notice
(Doc. No. 16). Plaintiff timely responded (Doc. No. 18), and
Defendant then replied to Plaintiff's Response Motion
(Doc. No. 19). Upon review by the Court, Defendant's
Motion is GRANTED, and Plaintiff's suit is dismissed
Norma Darwin Lane filed this action in this Court on January 25,
2018. (Doc. No. 1). Plaintiff is a resident of Fort Mill,
South Carolina, and an employee of Cummins, Inc.,
(“Defendant”), which is located in Charlotte,
North Carolina. (Doc. No. 1, p. 1).
hired Plaintiff in October 2001 to work as an Accounts
Receivable Analyst. (Doc. No. 1, p. 2). In March of 2017,
Plaintiff learned that various positions in the accounting
department, including hers, would be transferred to and
consolidated with Defendant's Nashville office.
Id. at 3. Plaintiff alleges she was led to believe
that she would be laid off because of this change while a
younger employee in Plaintiff's same department would be
retained. Id. Plaintiff alerted her manager about
the alleged appearance of age discrimination, and on May 4,
2017, she filed Charge No. 403-2017-01104 (“EEOC
Charge”) with the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission (“EEOC”). Id. In her EEOC
Charge, Plaintiff alleged Defendant had violated the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act by not eliminating
“all of the similarly situated positions” at her
branch location. (Doc. No. 13-1, p. 2).
30, 2017, Defendant told Plaintiff that her job would be
retained until at least October of that year. (Doc. No. 1, p.
3). Plaintiff alleges that because of the EEOC Charge,
Defendant had retaliated against Plaintiff by questioning the
quality of her work, monitoring her closely, excluding her
from trainings and meetings, and keeping her employment
status in limbo. Id. at 3-4. On October 31, 2017,
the EEOC issued Plaintiff a “Dismissal and Notice of
Rights” letter, notifying her the EEOC was unable to
conclude that Defendant violated any anti-discrimination
statutes. (Doc. No. 1, p. 7).
remained employed with Defendant until she contends she was
“forced” to resign on April 10, 2018. (Doc. No.
18, p. 4). Plaintiff alleges Defendant forced her to resign
when her cubicle was moved closer to her supervisor for
closer monitoring, which added to the stress and harassment
Plaintiff had allegedly suffered at the hands of Defendant.
filed this present suit in January of 2018, and Defendant
moved to dismiss Plaintiff's complaint with prejudice on
April 9, 2018. (Doc. No. 12).
liberally, Plaintiff has alleged: (1) age discrimination, (2)
constructive discharge and (3) retaliation. (Doc. Nos. 1,
18). Defendant moves this Court to dismiss Plaintiff's
Complaint in its entirety and with prejudice. (Doc. No. 13,
pp. 1, 13). Defendant argues Plaintiff has failed to state a
claim upon which relief can be granted for her age
discrimination claim (Doc. No. 13, p. 1), and this Court
lacks subject matter jurisdiction over Plaintiff's
retaliation and constructive discharge claims because
Plaintiff failed to exhaust the administrative remedies.
Failure to State a Claim
Standard of Review
motion to dismiss pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) tests the
“legal sufficiency of the complaint” but
“does not resolve contests surrounding the facts, the
merits of a claim, or the applicability of defenses.”
Republican Party of N.C. v. Martin, 980 F.2d 943,
952 (4th Cir. 1992); Eastern Shore Markets, Inc. v. J.D.
Assoc. Ltd. Partnership, 213 F.3d 175, 180 (4th Cir.
2000). 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, 697 (2009) (quoting
Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570
(2007)); see also Robinson v. American Honda Motor Co.,
Inc., 551 F.3d 218, 222 (4th Cir. 2009). “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, 556 U.S. At 678.
“Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not
suffice.” Id. The Supreme Court has also
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only
“a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief.” Specific facts are
not necessary; the statement need only “give the
defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the
grounds upon which it rests.” In addition, when ruling
on a defendant's motion to ...