Williams v. United States Department of Labor

Filing 12

ORDER by Judge Claudia Wilken GRANTING DEFENDANTS 8 MOTION TO DISMISS. (ndr, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 5/1/2012)

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1 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 2 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 3 4 ANTHONY L. WILLIAMS, 5 Plaintiff, 6 7 8 9 10 No. C 11-6653 CW ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO DISMISS (Docket No. 8) v. UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, Defendant. ________________________________/ United States District Court For the Northern District of California Defendant United States Department of Labor has filed a 11 motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. 12 Plaintiff Anthony L. Williams has not filed an opposition to 13 Defendant’s motion. The Court takes Defendant’s motion under 14 submission on the papers and GRANTS the motion. 15 BACKGROUND 16 In September 2004, Plaintiff brought suit against United 17 Airlines, alleging retaliatory termination, pursuant to the 18 Whistleblower Protection Program (WPP) of the Wendell H. Ford 19 Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century (AIR 21), 20 49 U.S.C. § 42121. This Court granted summary judgment in favor 21 of United Airlines on Plaintiff’s AIR 21 claim. On appeal, the 22 Ninth Circuit found that this Court lacked subject matter 23 jurisdiction under the WPP, because the statute creates no private 24 right of action in federal district court. Williams v. United 25 Airlines, Inc., 500 F.3d 1019, 1021-25 (9th Cir. 2007). 26 In 2008, Plaintiff filed a complaint under the WPP against 27 United Airlines with the United States Department of Labor. 28 A 1 Department of Labor Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) recommended 2 dismissal of his complaint because he filed his claim more than 3 ninety days after the filing deadline for such claims. 4 September 21, 2009, the Administrative Review Board (ARB) affirmed 5 the ALJ. 6 2008-AIR-003 (ARB Sept. 21, 2009). 7 subsequent motion for reconsideration. 8 Airlines, ARB No. 08-063, ALJ No. 2008-AIR-003 (ARB June 23, 9 2010). United States District Court For the Northern District of California 10 On Williams v. United Airlines, ARB No. 08-063, ALJ No. The ARB also denied his Williams v. United Plaintiff appealed the ARB decision to the Federal Circuit, 11 which found that it did not have jurisdiction to review the 12 decision and transferred the case to the Ninth Circuit. 13 v. U.S. Dept. of Labor, 370 Fed. Appx. 97, 97-98 (Fed. Cir. 2010). 14 In August 2011, the Ninth Circuit determined that it had 15 jurisdiction under the WPP, found that the ARB had properly denied 16 Plaintiff’s complaint as untimely and concluded that equitable 17 tolling did not apply. 18 App. LEXIS 17300, at *1-2 (9th Cir.). Williams Williams v. U.S. Dept. of Labor, 2011 U.S. 19 Plaintiff now returns to this Court in an attempt to set 20 aside the judgments against him in the prior proceedings both 21 before this Court and the ARB. 22 DISCUSSION 23 Dismissal is appropriate under Rule 12(b)(1) when the 24 district court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over the claim. 25 Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1). 26 The Ninth Circuit has already determined that this Court 27 lacked subject matter jurisdiction to consider Plaintiff’s WPP 28 claim. In doing so, the court did not simply determine that 2 1 “Williams must first file an administrative complaint before 2 filing a claim in federal district court,” but also questioned 3 “whether Williams could have brought this action at all in federal 4 district court,” and concluded that he could not, “even after 5 filing a complaint with the Secretary of Labor.” 6 United Airlines, Inc., 500 F.3d at 1022. 7 follow the Ninth Circuit’s prior decision. 8 9 Williams v. This Court is bound to This Court also does not have jurisdiction to review the ARB’s decision. Such jurisdiction is vested in the Court of United States District Court For the Northern District of California 10 Appeals under 49 U.S.C. § 42121(b)(4)(A). 11 Dept. of Labor, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 17300, at *1. 12 Court clearly cannot review or reverse the Ninth Circuit’s prior 13 holding that the ARB properly denied Plaintiff’s complaint as 14 untimely. 15 16 See Williams v. U.S. Further, this CONCLUSION For the reasons set forth above, Defendant’s motion to 17 dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction is GRANTED (Docket 18 No. 8). 19 additional allegations could cure the deficiencies identified 20 above. 21 22 23 Dismissal is without leave to amend, because no The Clerk shall enter judgment and close the file. Defendant shall recover its costs from Plaintiff. IT IS SO ORDERED. 24 25 26 Dated: 5/1/2012 CLAUDIA WILKEN United States District Judge 27 28 3

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