Brooks v. United States Postal Service
ORDER GRANTING MOTION 15 TO DISMISS OF DEFENDANT UNITED STATES. Signed by Judge S. Thomas Anderson on 1/5/2017. (Anderson, S.)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO DISMISS
Before the Court is the motion to dismiss of Defendant United States of America.
(ECF No. 15.) Defendant is seeking dismissal of this action on the ground that the
Federal Employees Compensation Act (“FECA”) provides the exclusive remedy for
Plaintiff’s alleged injuries. Plaintiff has not responded to the motion. For the reasons set
forth below, Defendant’s motion is GRANTED.
Defendant United States has filed its motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(1) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and asserts that the Court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction over this action. As explained in Alvord Investments, LLC v. The Hartford
Fin. Servs. Grp., Inc., 660 F. Supp. 2d 850 (W.D. Tenn. 2009):
A motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction may challenge
the sufficiency of the complaint itself—in which case it constitutes a facial
attack—or it may challenge the factual existence of subject matter
jurisdiction—in which case the motion constitutes a factual attack. United
States v. Ritchie, 15 F.3d 592, 598 (6th Cir. 1994). In ruling upon a facial
attack, the court must take as true the allegations of the plaintiff's
complaint and construe them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff,
but in a factual attack, the court does not presume that the complaint's
allegations are true and instead considers other evidence bearing upon the
question of subject matter jurisdiction. DLX, Inc. v. Kentucky, 381 F.3d
511, 516 (6th Cir. 2004). When faced with a factual attack, the trial court
may, at its discretion, consider affidavits and documents and even conduct
a limited evidentiary hearing to resolve any disputes as to jurisdictional
facts. Ohio Nat’l Life Ins. Co. v. United States, 922 F.2d 320, 325 (6th Cir.
1990). The plaintiff bears the burden of proving jurisdiction on a motion
to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(1). Rogers v. Stratton Indus., Inc., 798 F.2d
913, 915 (6th Cir. 1986); see United Gov’t Sec. Officers of Am. v. Akal
Sec., Inc., 475 F. Supp.2d 732, 736 (S.D. Ohio 2006).1
In the present case, Plaintiff alleges that, on April 28, 2014, he was driving a
vehicle owned by the General Services Administration (“GSA”) when a vehicle owned
by the United States and driven by Shawn Hayes, a United States employee, collided with
Plaintiff’s vehicle causing Plaintiff to be injured.2 Defendant has submitted unrefuted
evidence that, at the time of the accident, Plaintiff was an employee of the United States
Army Corps of Engineers and was on the job.3
The FECA establishes a workers’ compensation program for federal employees
who are injured while performing their duties.4 The Secretary of Labor is vested with the
power to resolve any disputes regarding the scope of the Act, and the Secretary’s decision
as to coverage is not subject to judicial review.5 Under the FECA, federal employees are
“guaranteed the right to receive immediate, fixed benefits, regardless of fault and without
need for litigation, but in return, they lose the right to sue the government.”6 “[O]nce an
Alvord Investments, 660 F. Supp. 2d at 854.
(Cmplt., ECF No. 1.)
(Fax, Def’s Ex. A, ECF No. 15-2.)
See 5 U.S.C. § 8102(a).
5 U.S.C. §§ 8145, 8128(b); see Hayden v. United States, 2009 WL 128859 at *2 (E.D.
Tenn. Jan. 16, 2009).
Lockheed Aircraft Corp. v. United States, 460 U.S. 190, 193-94 (1983).
injury falls within the coverage of FECA, its remedies are exclusive and no other claims
can be entertained by the court.”7
Here, there is no dispute that Plaintiff was employed by the U.S. Army Corps of
Engineers and on the job at the time of the relevant events. Thus, Plaintiff’s injuries fall
within the purview of FECA, and this Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction because
FECA provides the exclusive remedy for Plaintiff’s work-related injuries. Accordingly,
the motion to dismiss of Defendant United States is GRANTED.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
s/ S. Thomas Anderson
S. THOMAS ANDERSON
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Date: January 5, 2017
Jones v. Tenn. Valley Auth., 948 F.2d 258, 265 (6th Cir. 1991).
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