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Bedeski v. The Boeing Co.

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

November 14, 2014

PAMELA CATHERINE CHING BEDESKI, Plaintiff,
v.
THE BOEING COMPANY, Defendant.

ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO DISMISS

ROBERT S. LASNIK, District Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on "Defendant Boeing's Motion To Dismiss Pursuant To FRCP 12(B)(6)." Dkt. # 9. Having reviewed the memoranda and case law submitted by the parties, the Court grants defendant's motion for the reasons set forth below:

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff is a former Boeing employee who worked as a procurement financial analyst prior to her termination. Dkt. # 1 (Compl.) ¶ 3.1. In September 2012, at plaintiff's request, defendant placed plaintiff on a medical leave of absence; this leave of absence continued until her termination on July 29, 2013. Id . ¶¶ 3.1, 3.4. The Complaint suggests that plaintiff went on leave because she was suffering from anxiety, panic attacks and neck pain, and that these symptoms persisted throughout her leave period. Id . ¶ 3.1.

On June 20, 2013, plaintiff's doctor sent a report to the company that administered medical leaves of absence for defendant's employees; this report listed plaintiff's "expected return to work date" as July 29, 2013. Id . ¶ 3.3.

On June 29, 2013, defendant terminated plaintiff's employment on the grounds that she had failed to return to work, asserting that June 29, and not July 29, was her return to work date. Id . ¶ 3.4. Plaintiff did not receive notice of her termination, and only learned that she had been fired in mid-July, when she received a mailing from the Washington State Employment Security Department. Id . ¶¶ 3.4, 3.6. Although plaintiff immediately attempted to "correct the apparent miscommunication" concerning her return to work date, defendant refused to undo her termination. Id . ¶ 3.6. Plaintiff claims that she was "ready, willing and able to work as of August 2013." Id . ¶ 3.7.[1] Plaintiff further claims that defendant fired her in retaliation for "filing a claim for government benefits" earlier in June. Id . ¶ 3.5.

In October 2013, plaintiff filed a complaint against defendant with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. 1201 et seq. ("ADA"); on July 17, 2014, she received a "right to sue" letter from the EEOC. Id . ¶ 3.7. On July 15, 2014, plaintiff brought this action, alleging that defendant had violated of the ADA and Washington Law Against Discrimination, RCW 49.60 et seq. ("WLAD"); wrongfully terminated her in violation of public policy; and wrongfully withheld her wages. Id . ¶¶ 4.1-7.6. On September 9, 2014, defendant moved under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) to dismiss all claims. Dkt. # 9.

II. DISCUSSION

A. Standard for Motion to Dismiss

Although a complaint need not provide detailed factual allegations, it must offer more than "labels and conclusions" or a "formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action." Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). To survive a motion to dismiss brought under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), a complaint "must contain sufficient factual mater, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face, '" Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555); plaintiff's allegations must "raise a right to relief above the speculative level, " Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. In ruling on such a motion, the Court must assume the truth of a plaintiff's well-pled facts and draw all reasonable inferences in her favor. Wyler Summit P'ship v. Turner Broad. Sys., Inc., 135 F.3d 658, 663 (9th Cir. 1998).

A complaint may be found deficient for failing to assert (a) a cognizable legal theory or (b) sufficient facts to support a cognizable legal theory. Zixiang v. Kerry, 710 F.3d 995, 999 (9th Cir. 2013). If the Court dismisses a complaint or portions thereof, it must grant the plaintiff leave to amend under Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(2), "unless it is clear that the complaint could not be saved by any amendment." Jackson v. Carey, 353 F.3d 750, 758 (9th Cir. 2003).

B. ADA Claim

Defendant contends that the only cause of action that plaintiff has asserted under the ADA and WLAD is that defendant failed to "reasonably accommodate" her disability. Dkt. # 9 at 4. Plaintiff does not dispute this construction of the Complaint. Dkt. # 12. To establish a prima facie case for failure to accommodate under the ADA, plaintiff must show that (1) she is disabled within the meaning of the ADA; (2) she is a qualified individual able to perform the essential functions of the job with reasonable accommodation; and (3) she suffered an adverse employment action because of her ...


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