Obtaining the Dismissal of an ADA Case Brought by a Plaintiff Who Wouldn’t Appear at Pre-Motion Conferences

December 16, 2019

Epstein Becker Green helped a major retail client terminate a lawsuit because the plaintiff, a former employee of our client, failed to appear at pre-motion conferences.

The case began in early 2018, when the plaintiff filed a pro se complaint against our client alleging a hostile work environment in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). After discovery was completed, in July 2018, Epstein Becker Green, on behalf of our client, filed a letter with the court, requesting a pre-motion conference for leave to file a motion for summary judgment.

The court scheduled the pre-motion conference for September 27, 2018, but the plaintiff failed to appear at the conference. The court then scheduled a telephonic pre-motion conference for October 5, 2018, but the plaintiff failed to appear for that conference. After multiple attempts to reach the plaintiff by telephone were unsuccessful, the court rescheduled the conference for later in the day on October 5, but the plaintiff again failed to appear. The court then ordered the plaintiff to file a letter with the court by October 22 if she intended to pursue the action, but the plaintiff failed to file the letter. Therefore, Epstein Becker Green, on behalf of our client, requested that the court dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice.

In late 2018, the court dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint “for failure to prosecute and to comply with the court’s orders.” Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), the court also certified that any appeal from the court’s ruling would not be taken in good faith and denied the plaintiff in forma pauperis status (thus, the plaintiff will not have her court filing fees waived) for the purpose of an appeal.

The Epstein Becker Green team was led by Patrick G. Brady and included John M. O’Connor.