United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
GEORGE RODGERS, JR.
HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL, INC.
RULING AND ORDER
A. JACKSON JUDGE
the Court is the Motion to Dismiss and Compel
Arbitration Under Rule 12(b)(1) or 12(b)(3), and in the
Alternative, Motion to Dismiss Under Rule 12 (b)(6) (Doc.
6). Plaintiff filed a response. (Doc. 17) For the
reasons stated herein, the motion is GRANTED IN PART
AND DENIED IN PART.
claims that in July of 2017, Plaintiff was hired at
Defendant's manufacturing plant, which specialized in
producing automobile air-conditioning refrigerant. (Doc. 1 at
p. 2). Plaintiff asserts that he was an hourly employee of
Defendant, and that Defendant failed to pay him overtime as
required by the Fair Labor Standards Act. (Id.)
contrast, Defendant asserts that it and a company named
BRIS-E had entered into an engineering services contract.
(Doc. 6-2 at p. 3). Under the contract, BRIS-E provided
services to Defendant. BRIS-E allegedly hired Plaintiff as a
W-2 employee in July of 2017 and assigned Plaintiff to work
at Defendant's facility. (Id.) Defendant asserts
that BRIS-E paid Plaintiff for all of the services he
performed at Defendant's facility and determined how much
he was paid. (Id.) In the instant motion, Defendant
asserts that Plaintiffs claims are subject to an arbitration
agreement, and therefore must be dismissed.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1), a claim is"
'properly dismissed for lack of subject-matter
jurisdiction when the court lacks the statutory or
constitutional power to adjudicate' the claim."
In re FEMA Trailer Formaldehyde Prods. Liab. Litig.,
668 F.3d 281, 286 (5th Cir. 2012) (quoting Home Builders
Ass 'n v. City of Madison, 143 F.3d 1006, 1010 (5th
Cir. 1998)). In order to "prevent  a court without
jurisdiction from prematurely dismissing a case with
prejudice," a court should consider a Rule 12(b)(1)
motion for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction before
addressing any motions that concern the merits of a case.
Id. at 286-87 (citing Ramming v. United
States, 281 F.3d 158, 161 (5th Cir. 2001)).
motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(1) is analyzed under the
same standard as a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6).
Benton v. United States, 960 F.2d 19, 21 (5th Cir.
1992). That standard seeks to determine whether "a
complaint... contain[s] sufficient factual matter, 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 Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly,
550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). "[F]acial plausibility"
exists "when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged."
Id. at 678 (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at
556). Hence, the complaint need not set out "detailed
factual allegations," but something "more than
labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action" is required.
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. "Factual allegations
must be enough to raise a right to relief above the
speculative level." Id.
Rule of Civil Procedure ("Rule") 12(b)(3) permits a
defendant to move to dismiss a case for improper venue. When
ruling on a Rule 12(b)(3) motion, "the court must accept
as true all allegations in the complaint and resolve all
conflicts in favor of the plaintiff." Braspetro Oil
Servs. Co. v. Modec (USA), Inc., 240 Fed.Appx. 612, 615
(5th Cir.2007). If the Court determines that venue is
improper, the Court "shall dismiss, or if it be in the
interest of justice, transfer such case to any district... in
which it could have been brought." 28 U.S.C. §
asks the Court to compel arbitration of Plaintiffs claims and
dismiss this case under Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of subject
matter jurisdiction or under Rule 12(b)(3) for improper
venue. Defendant claims that Plaintiff signed an
acknowledgement and receipt of the BRIS-E Dispute Resolution
Plan ("Plan") as a condition of his employment with
BRIS-E. Defendant asserts that the Plan requires Plaintiff to
submit all claims, including those for unpaid wages, to
mandatory individual arbitration. (Doc. 2 at p. 20).
Defendant further asserts that the Plan identifies BRIS-E
clients and customers as third-party beneficiaries and
requires Plaintiff to submit his claims against such
beneficiaries to arbitration as well. Id.
agrees to submit his claims to arbitration, but asks the
Court to stay rather than dismiss this action. (Doc. 17 at p.
1). The Fifth Circuit has held that if a dispute is subject
to arbitration, "the proper course of action is usually
to stay the proceedings pending arbitration." Ruis
v. Donahoe, 784 F.3d 247, 248 (5th Cir. 2015). Dismissal
may be appropriate when all of the issues raised in
court must be submitted to arbitration. Id. In
addition, a stay may be more appropriate when "the
district court perceives that it might have more to do than
execute the judgment once arbitration has been
completed." Apache Bohai Corp,, LDC v. Texaco China,
B.V., 330 F.3d 307, 308 (5th Cir. 2003).
the Plan states that the Court may order the arbitrator to
modify the award. (Doc. 6-1 at p. 20-21). It also provides
that the Court should determine whether the Plan's class
waiver is enforceable. (Id. at p. 10). Accordingly,
the Court concludes that its responsibilities may involve
more than merely enforcing the arbitration judgment. As such,
the Court will ...