United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division
MEMORANDUM AND RECOMMENDATION
S. CAYER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
MATTER is before the Court on “Aptar Group,
Inc.'s Motion to Dismiss, or in the Alternative, Motion
to Compel Arbitration and Stay Judicial Proceedings”
(document #34) and the parties' briefs and exhibits.
matter was referred to the undersigned Magistrate Judge
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) on November 7, 2018
and this Motion is now ripe for consideration.
fully considered the arguments, the record, and the
applicable authority, the undersigned respectfully recommends
that Third Party Defendant's Motion to Dismiss and
alternative Motion to Compel Arbitration be denied,
as discussed below.
PROCEDURAL AND FACTUAL BACKGROUND
is a contract manufacturing and packaging provider. Defendant
provides contract filling and packaging services to marketers
of aerosol, liquid, and specialty packaged products. Taking
the allegations of the Complaint as true, on July 7, 2016,
the parties entered into a contract for Defendant to provide
manufacturing and packaging services to Plaintiff's
product lines. Plaintiff sent Defendant three purchase orders
pursuant to the contract.
October 10, 2017, Plaintiff filed this action asserting that
Defendant's packaging products were defective and
alleging claims for breach of contract and breach of express
and implied warranties.
30, 2018, Defendant filed its Third Party Complaint against
Aptar Group, Inc. Defendant alleges that it purchased the
defective products from Aptar. Defendant alleges claims for
indemnity and breach of implied warranties. Defendant asserts
that “any liability of [Defendant] due to the
allegations in the Complaint … against [Defendant] are
due to the actions, errors, and omissions of Aptar, and Aptar
must indemnify” Defendant.
sent Aptar three purchase orders. Aptar responded to each
order with an email confirmation that incorporated its Terms
and Conditions of Sale. Those Terms and Conditions are posted
on Aptar's website. They include a mandatory arbitration
clause. There is no dispute that Defendant's Third Party
claims are within the scope of the arbitration clause.
August 27, 2018, Aptar filed its Motion to Dismiss or in the
alternative to Compel Arbitration. In addition to seeking
enforcement of the arbitration clause, Aptar claims that
Defendant “improperly seeks contractual indemnity
without attaching any contract or other authority to support
such claim.” Document #35 at 3.
Motion has been fully briefed and is ripe for determination.
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