United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
M. Munley United States District Court
the court for disposition is defendant's motion to
dismiss, filed pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules
of Civil Procedure. (Doc. 5). The parties have briefed their
respective positions and the motion is ripe for disposition.
27, 2016, Plaintiff, Robert Martin IV (hereinafter
“plaintiff”) interviewed for a job at Lowe's
Distribution Center, located in Schuylkill County,
Pennsylvania. (Doc. 1-1, Pl's. Compl.)(hereinafter
“Compl.”)(¶ 5) Defendant, SIMOS Insourcing
Solutions, (hereinafter “SIMOS”) interviewed
plaintiff on Lowe's behalf. During the initial interview,
plaintiff revealed that he had a prior criminal record and
mentioned that he did not want to waste time applying if he
would be rejected due to the criminal record. (Compl. ¶
5). Defendant ran a background check on plaintiff at the
interview, advised him he was “good to go, ” and
hired him on the spot to work at Lowe's. (Compl.
¶¶ 7, 8). Shortly thereafter, plaintiff began
working at Lowe's unloading trucks. (Compl. ¶ 9).
he worked at Lowe's, a female employee alleged that
plaintiff had harassed her, whereupon plaintiff was
temporarily suspended pending an investigation. (Compl.
¶ 10). SIMOS contacted plaintiff, advising that he had
been cleared of the allegation, and then he returned to work
for about one day before being told to contact a human
contacted a human relations representative who informed him
that he would be terminated because of his criminal history.
(Compl. ¶ 13). Plaintiff received by mail a
“Pre-Adverse Notice” dated September 26, 2016,
which included a background screening report containing his
prior criminal history. (Compl. ¶¶ 15-16).
about October 4, 2016, SIMOS terminated plaintiff's
employment because of the criminal history. (Compl.
¶¶ 17-18). Plaintiff filed his complaint on March
2, 2017, in the Court of Common Pleas for Schuylkill County,
Pennsylvania, alleging only one count: wrongful termination
based upon Pennsylvania's Criminal History Records
Information Act, (hereinafter “CHRIA”), 18 PA.
CONS. STAT. §§ 9101-9183. (Compl. ¶¶
25-31.) Specifically, the plaintiff alleges the
defendant's actions constitute wrongful termination
because they violate public policy as codified in CHRIA. On
April 3, 2017, defendant filed a Notice of Removal (Doc. 1),
and on April 8, 2017, defendant filed the instant motion to
dismiss, bringing the case to its present posture.
court has jurisdiction pursuant to the diversity statute, 28
U.S.C. § 1332. Plaintiff is a citizen of Pennsylvania.
(Compl. ¶ 1). SIMOS is incorporated in Delaware with its
principal place of business in Georgia. (Compl. ¶ 2;
Doc. 1, Notice of Removal ¶ 10). Because complete
diversity of citizenship exists between the parties and the
amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000, the court has
jurisdiction over the case. See 28 U.S.C. § 1332
(“[D]istrict courts shall have original jurisdiction of
all civil actions where the matter in controversy exceeds the
sum or value of $75, 000, exclusive of interest and costs,
and is between . . . citizens of different States[.]”).
As a federal court sitting in diversity, the substantive law
of Pennsylvania shall apply to the instant case.
Chamberlain v. Giampapa, 210 F.3d 154, 158 (3d Cir.
2000) (citing Erie R.R. v. Tompkins, 304 U.S. 64, 78
case is before the court pursuant to defendants' motion
to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief can
be granted filed pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure. When a 12(b)(6) motion is filed,
the sufficiency of the allegations in the complaint is
tested. Granting the motion is appropriate if, accepting as
true all the facts alleged in the complaint, the plaintiff
has not pleaded “enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face, ” or put another
way, “nudged [his or her] claims across the line from
conceivable to plausible.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). The Third Circuit
interprets Twombly to require the plaintiff to
describe “enough facts to raise a reasonable
expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of”
each necessary element of the claims alleged in the
complaint. Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d
224, 234 (3d Cir. 2008) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S.
at 556). Moreover, the plaintiff must allege facts that
“justify moving the case beyond the pleadings to the
next stage of litigation.” Id. at 234-35.
issue is whether the facts alleged in the complaint, if true,
support a claim upon which relief can be granted. In deciding
a 12(b)(6) motion, the court must accept as true all factual
allegations in the complaint and give the pleader the benefit
of all reasonable inferences that can fairly be drawn
therefrom, and view them in the light most favorable to the
plaintiff. Morse v. Lower Merion Sch. Dist., 132
F.3d 902, 906 (3d Cir.1997). To decide a motion to dismiss, a
court generally should consider only the allegations in the
complaint, exhibits attached to the complaint, matters of
public record, and documents that form the basis of a claim.
See In re Burlington Coat Factory Sec. Litig., 114
F.3d 1410, 1426 (3d Cir. 1997); Pension Benefit Guar.
Corp. v. White Consol. Indus., Inc., 998 F.2d 1192, 1196
(3d Cir. 1993)
complaint contains one count, wrongful termination. (Doc.
1-1, Compl. ¶¶ 25-31). Plaintiff alleges that he
was wrongfully terminated from his employment due to his
criminal history. Defendant moves to dismiss the complaint
arguing that Pennsylvania is an “at-will”
employment state and, as a matter of ...