Gomillion v. UAMS et al
ORDER denying 35 Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim. 39 Motion for leave to file a third amended complaint is granted in part and denied in part. Signed by Judge J. Leon Holmes on 2/7/2014. (ks)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
NO. 4:13CV00281 JLH
UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees filed a motion to dismiss Charlotte Gomillion’s
second amended complaint, arguing that Gomillion did not file her EEOC charge of discrimination
within 180 days after the alleged last incident occurred, so that charge was not timely; Gomillion did
not plead facts sufficient to establish the necessary elements of a disability claim; and the University
of Arkansas Board of Trustees is immune from claims under the Arkansas Civil Rights Act.
Gomillion filed a brief in response to the motion to dismiss, and she also filed a motion for
leave to file a third amended complaint, along with a proposed third amended complaint. The
defendants have objected to the motion for leave to file a third amended complaint on the ground that
it purports to add as defendants Donald R. Bobbitt, as President of the University of Arkansas Board
of Trustees, in his individual and official capacities, and Daniel W. Rahn, as Chancellor of the
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, in his individual and official capacities.
The argument pertaining to the timeliness of the EEOC charge of discrimination is based on
the fact that the EEOC Form 5 is file-stamped as received by the EEOC on September 13, 2012,
while the last act of discrimination alleged in the charge was January 19, 2012, which was more than
180 days before the file-stamped date. In response, however, Gomillion has provided a copy of her
EEOC intake questionnaire, which is file-stamped as received by the EEOC on July 17, 2012.
July 17, 2012, was exactly 180 days after January 19, 2012, so it appears that Gomillion’s initial
allegations were made to the EEOC within 180 days after the last date of discrimination. The intake
questionnaire includes an allegation that Gomillion was discharged after filing EEOC and internal
complaints of discrimination. Accordingly, the Court declines to dismiss Gomillion’s Title VII claims
that she was discharged in retaliation for engaging in conduct protected under Title VII.
The defendants also argue that Gomillion fails to allege facts sufficient to establish a claim of
disability. After careful review, and liberally construing the complaint in light of the fact that it is pro
se, the Court concludes that Gomillion has alleged sufficient facts to meet the pleading standards of
the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure on her claim of disability discrimination.
Gomillion’s proposed third amended complaint does not include a claim under the Arkansas
Civil Rights Act, so it is unnecessary for the Court to rule on the issue of whether the University of
Arkansas Board of Trustees is immune from suit under that Act.
The defendants are correct, however, that the third amended complaint does not specify any
basis for relief against Donald R. Bobbitt in his individual capacity or Daniel W. Rahn in his individual
capacity. Moreover, the purported claims against those two in their official capacities are redundant
inasmuch as the Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas is already a defendant.
Gomillion’s motion for leave to file a third amended complaint is granted in part. Gomillion’s
third amended complaint will be deemed filed on the date that the Court enters this Order, and the
time for filing an answer under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure will begin to run on that date.
For the reasons stated, however, the Court declines to allow Gomillion to add Bobbitt and Rahn as
defendants, and their names are struck from the docket as defendants.
For the reasons stated, the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees’ motion to dismiss for
failure to state a claim is denied. Document #35. Charlotte Gomillion’s motion for leave to file a
third amended complaint is granted in part and denied in part. Document #39.
IT IS SO ORDERED this 7th day of February, 2014.
J. LEON HOLMES
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?