Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Thomas J. Donegan v. United States Postal Service

March 2, 2011

THOMAS J. DONEGAN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Ambrose, Senior District Judge

OPINION and

ORDER OF COURT

SYNOPSIS

Defendant, United States Postal Service ("USPS"), filed a Motion to Dismiss, or in the alternative, for Summary Judgment. (ECF No. 5). Plaintiff, Thomas Donegan, filed a Response to the same and the USPS filed a Reply Brief. (ECF Nos. 7, 8). After careful consideration of the same and for the reasons set forth below, said Motion (ECF No. 5) is granted.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff registered with the USPS to undergo an examination to determine Plaintiff‟s eligibility for hire as an "Electronic Technician, PS-11" with the USPS. The test was administered on June 11, 2008. Plaintiff did not pass the test and sought to see the test results as part of a Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. §552, ("FOIA") request. Plaintiff‟s FOIA request was denied. As a result, Plaintiff filed the instant "Complaint for Injunctive Relief" against the USPS for violation of the FOIA for wrongful withholding of agency records seeking the immediate release of the test, Plaintiff‟s results and the correct answers. (ECF No. 1).

The USPS has filed a Motion to Dismiss the Complaint arguing that the records were properly withheld pursuant to Exemptions 2, 3 and 5 of the FOIA. (ECF Nos. 5 and 6). Plaintiff has filed a Response and Defendant filed a Reply thereto. ((ECF Nos. 7 and 8). The issues are now ripe for review.

II. LEGAL DISCUSSION

A. Standard of Review*fn1

Defendant filed its Motion to Dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. When deciding whether to grant or deny a 12(b)(6) motion the Supreme Court has held:

While a complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss does not need detailed factual allegations, a plaintiff=s obligation to provide the grounds of his entitlement to relief requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do. Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level, on the assumption that all the allegations in the complaint are true (even if doubtful in fact).

Bell Atlantic Co. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (cites and footnote omitted)(emphasis added); see also, Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234 (3d Cir. 2008) (a plaintiff=s factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level).

Most recently, in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937 (2009), the Supreme Court held, A. . . a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face. A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.@ Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (citations omitted).

In Iqbal, the Court specifically highlighted the two principles which formed the basis of the Twombly decision: First, for the purposes of a motion to dismiss, courts must accept as true all factual allegations set forth in the complaint, but courts are not bound to accept as true any legal conclusions couched as factual allegations. Id. at 1949-1950. See also, Fowler v. UPMC Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203 (3d Cir. 2009). Second, a complaint will only survive a motion to dismiss if it states a plausible claim for relief, which requires a court to engage in a context-specific task, drawing on the court‟s judicial experience and common sense. Id. at 1950. Where well-pleaded facts do not permit the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.