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Latannya Bell v. United States

July 27, 2012

LATANNYA BELL, PLAINTIFF,
v.
UNITED STATES, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Emmet G. Sullivan United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Plaintiff LaTannya Bell brings this action alleging racial and gender discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ("Title VII"), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., against defendant Martha Johnson, Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration ("GSA"). Pending before the Court is defendant's Motion to Dismiss. Upon consideration of the Motion, the response and reply thereto, the applicable law, and the entire record, the Court GRANTS defendant's Motion.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff, an African-American female, has been employed by defendant at the GSA since 1984. On January 3, 2008, plaintiff filed a formal complaint of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), alleging that defendant took a variety of adverse actions against her because of her race, sex, and color. Pl.'s EEOC Compl., Dkt. No. 6-1.

In a supporting affidavit prepared on March 18, 2008, plaintiff claimed that she was intimidated, threatened with being placed on Absent Without Leave status, forced to attend a meeting, and denied use of sick leave. Pl.'s Aff. in Supp. of EEOC Compl., Dkt. No. 6-1. On September 8, 2010, EEOC Administrative Judge McKnight issued judgment for the GSA, concluding that plaintiff failed to establish a genuine issue that the GSA's actions were based on a discriminatory motive. EEOC Order, Dkt. 6-1.

On September 27, 2010, the GSA mailed to plaintiff its Final Order ("GSA Letter") implementing the EEOC decision. GSA Letter, Dkt. 6-1. The letter notified plaintiff of the relevant deadlines for filing a civil action:

[A] civil action may be filed in the appropriate federal district court in any of the following situations:

(a) Within 90 calendar days of receipt of GSA's final decision on an individual or class complaint if no appeal has been filed with the EEOC;

(b) After 180 calendar days from the date of filing an individual or class complaint if an appeal has not been filed with the EEOC or a final decision has not been issued by GSA;

(c) Within 90 calendar days of receipt of the EEOC's decision on an appeal;

(d) After 180 calendar days from the date of filing an appeal with the EEOC if a decision has not been issued by the EEOC.

Id. at 2. It informed plaintiff that any request for a court-appointed lawyer "must be made within the above-referenced 90-day time limit for filing suit." Id. It also stated that plaintiff's receipt of the letter would be presumed 5 days after it was sent. Id. at 4.

On March 9, 2011, 158 days after her presumed receipt of the GSA Letter, plaintiff filed a pro se complaint in the Court of Federal Claims. The case was transferred to this Court on October 11, ...


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