Bailey v. Klockner Pentaplast of America, Inc.
ORDER denying 3 Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim. Plaintiff shall have twenty days from entry of this order to file an amended complaint; and defendant shall have fourteen days from the filing of the amended complaint to file a second motion to dismiss. Signed by District Judge Glen E. Conrad on 8/4/17. (sas)
CLERK'S OFFICE U.S. DIST. COURT
AT ROANOKE, VA
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA
CHARLES BAILEY, JR.,
OF AMERICA, INC.,
Civil Action No.
AUG 0 4 2017
Hon. Glen E. Conrad
United States District Judge
Plaintiff Charles Bailey, Jr. brings this action against his former employer, Klockner
Pentaplast of America, Inc., pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C.
§§ 12101 et seq. Plaintiff alleges that the defendant failed to accommodate his need for
permanent light-duty work, and discriminated and retaliated against him because of his
permanent disability. The case is currently before the court on defendant's motion to dismiss
The ADA, as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (the "ADAAA"), prohibits
discrimination "against a qualified individual on the basis of disability in regard to ... the hiring,
advancement, or discharge of employees, . . . and other terms, conditions, and privileges of
employment." 42 U.S.C. § 12112(a). A qualified individual is one who, "with or without
reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of the employment position that
such individual holds or desires." 42 U.S.C. § 12111(8). "Essential functions" means "the.
fundamental job duties of the employment position the individual with a disability holds or
desires." 29 C.F.R. 1630.2(n)(1). "A qualified person must be 'able to meet all of a program's
requirements in spite of his handicap."' Lamb v. Qualex, Inc., 33 Fed. App'x 49, 56 (4th Cir.
2002) (quoting Se. Cmty. CoiL v. Davis, 442 U.S. 397, 406 (1979)). To allege that he was
qualified for his position, the plaintiff must assert facts suggesting that: "(1) he could 'perform
the essential functions of the job' or (2) if not, whether 'any reasonable accommodation by [his]
employer would enable [him] to perform those functions."' Id. (quoting Tyndall v. Nat'l Educ.
Ctr., Inc. of Cal., 31 F.3d 209, 213 (4th Cir. 1994)) (alterations in original).
Here, defendant argues that plaintiff has failed to plead facts related to the essential
functions of either plaintiff's job or any other available positions. Instead, defendant argues that
plaintiff has only asserted conclusory allegations that do not meet the standard required to
survive a motion to dismiss, as articulated in Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 554 (2007)
and Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009). Therefore, defendant contends that plaintiff has not
demonstrated that he is a qualified individual who, "with or without reasonable accommodation,
can perform the essential functions of the employment position that such individual holds or
desires." 42 U.S.C. § 12111(8).
The court believes that plaintiff has alleged sufficient facts suggesting that he could
perform the essential functions of his job as a Class A Maintenance Mechanic. However,
plaintiff's allegations that there were open Quality Assurance and full-time stock room positions
available at KP A, absent more facts demonstrating what these jobs entailed that made them
reasonable accommodations for Bailey, are insufficient to "state a claim for relief that is
plausible on its face." Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570; see also Craddock v. Lincoln Nat'l Life Ins.
Co., 533 Fed. App'x 333, 337 (4th Cir. 2013) ("The ADA expressly recognizes 'reassignment to
a vacant position' as a reasonable accommodation.") (quoting 42 U.S.C. § 12111(9)(B)). The
court believes the complaint is simply too abbreviated in terms of identifying alternative jobs to
survive a motion to dismiss on plaintiff's failure to accommodate claim.
However, at the hearing, the plaintiff sought leave to amend his complaint to add further
factual allegations related to the available positions, which the court granted.
Accordingly, it is hereby
1. Defendant's motion to dismiss is DENIED;
2. Plaintiff shall have twenty days from entry of this order to file an amended complaint;
3. Defendant shall have fourteen days from the filing of the amended complaint to file a
second motion to dismiss, if defendant wishes to do so. However, no further responsive
pleading is necessary.
The Clerk is directed to send certified copies of this order to all counsel of record.
ENTER: This i}IJI day of August, 2017.
1stnct u ge
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