United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania
action was originally filed by the plaintiff in the Court of
Common Pleas of Lehigh County, then removed by defendants to
this Court on the basis of federal question jurisdiction.
one-count Complaint, plaintiff alleges that the defendants
retaliated against her by terminating her employment in
violation of the Pennsylvania Whistleblower Law, 43 P.S.
§ 1423(a). Specifically, plaintiff alleges that a
co-worker's supervisor's discriminatory and harassing
conduct constitutes “wrongdoing” under the
Whistleblower Law because it violates state and federal
statutes, namely Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
(“Title VII”), the Pennsylvania Human Relations
Act (“PHRA”), and “various other federal
and state laws.” (Compl. at ¶¶ 37-38.)
filed a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim. (ECF
3.) Plaintiff responded by filing a motion to remand,
claiming there is no diversity of citizenship among the
parties and the Complaint only raises a question of state
law, i.e., a violation of the Pennsylvania Whistleblower Law.
(ECF 12.) Plaintiff also filed an unopposed motion for an
enlargement of time to respond to defendants' motion to
dismiss, pending resolution of the motion to remand. (ECF
13.) The Court granted this motion. (ECF 14.) Defendants then
filed a response to the motion to remand, claiming that
embedded in plaintiff's Whistleblower Law claim is a
federal claim for violation of Title VII and, as a result,
plaintiff's Complaint does raise a substantial and actual
federal question. (Doc. 15.) By Memorandum Opinion and Order
entered on January 9, 2017, the Court agreed with defendants
and denied the motion to remand. (ECF 16, 17.)
the Court found that it had subject matter jurisdiction over
plaintiff's Whistleblower Law claim because the claim
necessarily raises a stated federal issue, actually disputed
and substantial, which the Court may entertain without
disturbing any congressionally approved balance of federal
and state judicial responsibilities. See Grable &
Sons Metal Prods. v. Darue Engineering & Mfg., 545
U.S. 308, 314 (2005).
Court distinguished a case referenced by plaintiff, Seal
v. University of Pittsburgh, 766 F.Supp. 386 (W.D. Pa.
1991), wherein the Court declined to exercise pendent
jurisdiction over the plaintiff's breach of contract,
wrongful discharge, and Whistleblower Law claims after the
parties stipulated to the dismissal of his federal civil
rights claim-the only question of federal law at issue
in that action. 766 F.Supp. at 387-88. This Court
specifically noted that plaintiff had not offered to dismiss
her embedded Title VII claim in this case.
January 18, 2017, plaintiff filed a motion for
reconsideration of the Court's January 9, 2017 Opinion
and Order in which she notes that she offered to stipulate to
the dismissal of her embedded Title VII claim and any other
federal claims and proceed only with an embedded state law
claim under the PHRA. (ECF 19.) Defendants did not respond to
plaintiff's offer. Accordingly, by Order filed on
February 16, 2017, the Court permitted plaintiff to file a
motion to amend the complaint to exclude any reference to any
federal claims. (ECF 25.) On February 21, 2017, plaintiff
filed a motion to amend the complaint along with a copy of
the proposed amended complaint (which erroneously contains
the heading of the Court of Common Pleas of Lehigh County).
(ECF 26.) Defendants opposed this motion. (ECF 27.) By
Memorandum Opinion and Order entered on March 10, 2017 (ECF
28, 29), the Court granted plaintiff's motion to amend
the complaint. On March 16, 2017, plaintiff filed the amended
complaint (Doc. 31). As a result, the Court will now rule on
plaintiff's motion for reconsideration of the Court's
order denying her motion to remand.
should grant motions for reconsideration sparingly, reserving
them for instances where there has been “(1) an
intervening change in controlling law, (2) the emergence of
new evidence not previously available, or (3) the need to
correct a clear error of law or to prevent a manifest
injustice.” General Instrument Corp of Delaware. v.
Nu-Tek Elecs. & Mfg., Inc., 3 F.Supp.2d 602, 606
(E.D. Pa. 1998), aff'd., 197 F.3d 83 (3d Cir. 1999); see
also Harsco Corp. v. Zlotnicki, 779 F.2d 906, 909
(3d Cir. 1985), cert. denied, 476 U.S. 1171 (1986)
(“The purpose of a motion for reconsideration is to
correct manifest errors of law or fact or to present newly
discovered evidence.”). Mere dissatisfaction with the
court's ruling is not a proper basis for reconsideration.
See United States v. Phillips, 2001 WL 527810, at *1
(E.D. Pa. May 17, 2001) (citing Burger King Corp. v. New
England Hood and Duct Cleaning Co., 2000 WL 133756, at
*2 (E.D.Pa. Feb. 4, 2000).
plaintiff has filed an amended complaint withdrawing her
embedded federal claim, the only claim which gave this Court
jurisdiction over this matter. As the amended complaint
alleges only state law claims, and no longer contains any
embedded federal claims, we no longer have jurisdiction and,
therefore, the motion for reconsideration ...