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Medina v. Werner Enterprises, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Colorado

January 30, 2015

ANN MARIE JULIE MEDINA, and SAMUEL MEDINA, JR., Plaintiffs,
v.
WERNER ENTERPRISES, INC., Defendant.

RECOMMENDATION OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

KATHLEEN M. TAFOYA, Magistrate Judge.

This case comes before the court on "Defendant's Motion to Dismiss Pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6)." (Doc. No. 22, filed July 14, 2014.) For the following reasons, the court recommends that Defendant's Motion to Dismiss be GRANTED.

FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Generally, Plaintiffs allege that Defendant violated their rights when it refused to hire Plaintiff Julie Medina because she is disabled. The following factual background is taken from Plaintiffs' Complaint and Jury Demand. (Doc. No. 1 [Compl.].)

In May 2008, Ms. Medina underwent a shoulder surgery to replace her shoulder joint. (Compl. ¶ 10.) Later, in September 2008, Ms. Medina underwent a "neck infusion." ( Id. ) Finally, in March 2009, Ms. Medina was diagnosed with arthritis and completely deteriorated joints in her hand and thumb, due to her long-time occupation as a hair stylist. ( Id. ) In an effort to improve these medical issues, Ms. Medina received ongoing medical treatment and physical therapy for several years. ( Id. )

After her treatment, Ms. Medina participated in a vocational rehabilitation service to help her find a different occupation because she could no longer be employed as a hair stylist. ( Id. ¶ 11.) In September 2012, a vocational rehabilitation specialist informed Ms. Medina that she could work in the trucking industry with her disabilities, so long as she was trained and licensed into that field. ( Id. )

In October 2012, Ms. Medina and her husband, Plaintiff Samuel Medina, Jr., enrolled at the United States Truck Driving School in Colorado with the intention of "team driving" trucks together. ( Id. ¶ 12.) On October 20, 2012, in their first week of attendance at the school, Plaintiff's applied for employment with Defendant with the assistance of "Brad, " one of Defendants' recruiters. ( Id. ¶ 14.) On October 26, 2012, Plaintiffs received a letter stating that they were "pre-hired" as "team drivers" by Defendant. ( Id. )

In November 2012, Plaintiffs completed their coursework at the United States Truck Driving School. ( Id. ¶ 15.) Shortly thereafter, Plaintiffs completed orientation and passed a test, both of which were required prior to being fully hired by Defendant. ( Id. )

Shortly after completing orientation, Ms. Medina was notified by Defendant that she would not be hired. ( Id. ¶ 16.) Defendant did not provide any explanation for this decision. ( Id. ) Plaintiffs maintain that because they were originally pre-hired as a team, and they wanted to remain a team, Defendants effectively did not hire Mr. Medina. ( Id. )

On January 25, 2013, Mr. Medina attended a recruiting event to search for employment with other trucking companies. ( Id. ¶ 17.) At the event, Mr. Medina spoke with Brad, who stated that he was "sad that they could not hire [Ms. Medina] because of her disability." ( Id. ) When Mr. Medina inquired as to what he meant, Brad informed Mr. Medina that Defendant refused to hire individuals with disabilities or individuals who were receiving disability assistance. ( Id. ¶ 18.) Brad further stated that Defendant was informed that Ms. Medina was receiving disability and that, as a consequence, Defendant was unable to hire her. ( Id. )

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Based on the facts recited above, Plaintiffs' Complaint asserts five claims for relief. Plaintiffs' first and second claims allege that Defendant violated the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. § 12101, et seq., as amended by the ADA Amendment Act of 2008 (collectively, the "ADA"). Plaintiffs' third, fourth, and fifth claims are state law claims for intentional infliction of emotional distress, breach of contract, and violations of the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act (CADA), Colo. Rev. Stat. § 24-34-401, et seq., respectively.

Defendant's Motion to Dismiss argues that Plaintiffs' second, third and fourth claims are properly dismissed pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim for relief.[1] Plaintiffs' Response to Defendant's Motion to Dismiss was filed on August 4, 2014 (Doc. No. 25) and Defendant's Reply was filed on August 14, 2014 ...


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