United States District Court, D. New Mexico
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
VÁZQUEZ UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
MATTER comes before the Court on the Motion to Dismiss for
Failure to State a Claim filed by SGI, LLC d/b/a El Camino
Lodge (“SGI”). [Doc. 186]. The Court, having
considered the motion, briefs, and relevant law, and being
otherwise fully informed, finds that the Motion is well-taken
and will be granted. However, the Court will grant Plaintiff,
the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
(“EEOC”), leave to amend its Complaint to rectify
the sole deficiency in the Complaint: the failure to allege
that SGI had notice of the pendency of the EEOC charges in
this case prior to its acquisition of the El Camino Lodge.
EEOC filed this action on September 30, 2014, seeking relief
for eight named charging parties. [Doc. 1]. The Complaint
alleged that Defendant, Roark-Whitten Hospitality 2, LP d/b/a
Whitten Inn (“Whitten”), “created a hostile
work environment, employed discriminatory policies and
practices, and retaliated against the charging parties at a
hotel operated by Roark-Whitten Hospitality 2, LP
(“Whitten Inn”) in Taos, New Mexico.”
Id. at ¶¶ 77-97. On December 22, 2014,
before Whitten answered, the EEOC filed an Amended Complaint
adding as a Defendant “XYZ
Company(s)/Corporation(s).” [Doc. 4]. In the Amended
Complaint, the EEOC alleged that, “[u]pon information
and belief, after the Commission issued reasonable cause
determinations and attempted conciliation with the Whitten
Inn Defendants, the Whitten Inn in Taos, New Mexico was sold
in 2014 to David Patel and/or an unknown owner and/or XYZ
Company(s)/Corporation(s).” Id. at ¶ 19.
Subsequently, the EEOC moved to amend its Complaint again to
substitute Jai Hanuman, LLC (“Jai”), as the
company previously identified as the unknown “XYZ
Company(s)/Corporation(s).” [Doc. 52]. The Court
granted the Motion to Amend [Doc. 85], and EEOC filed its
Second Amended Complaint. [Doc. 87].
Second Amended Complaint, the EEOC alleged that Whitten,
having sold the hotel, is unable to provide all relief to the
charging parties, including reinstatement, injunctive relief
and “other relief” at the hotel. Id. at
¶ 17. It sought specific relief from Jai, including,
inter alia, a permanent injunction enjoining Jai and
“any other successor employer” from engaging in
discriminatory employment practices; an order requiring Jai
to carry out and institute “policies, practices, and
programs which provide equal employment opportunities”
and “which eradicate the effects of its past and
present unlawful employment practices”; back pay; front
pay; reinstatement; “compensation for past and future
pecuniary losses” including relocation and job search
expenses; emotional distress damages; and punitive damages.
Id. pp. 16-18.
December 16, 2016, after Jai sold the Taos Hotel to SGI, the
EEOC filed its Second Motion to Amend Complaint to Add SGI,
LLC as a Defendant. [Doc. 86]. On January 19, 2017, Jai filed
a Rule 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss the Second Amended
Complaint. [Doc. 96]. On September 21, 2017, the Court
entered a Memorandum Opinion and Order denying Jai's
Motion to Dismiss the Second Amended Complaint and granting
the EEOC's Second Motion to Amend Complaint
(“September 2017 Order”). [Doc. 178].
EEOC filed its Third Amended Complaint on September 28, 2017.
[Doc. 179]. The EEOC's Third Amended Complaint alleges,
in pertinent part:
27. After Plaintiff EEOC filed suit against the Whitten [Inn]
Hotels on September 30, 2014, and after Plaintiff EEOC sought
to [add] Jai Hanuman as a defendant to this lawsuit in August
2016, the Taos Hotel was sold in 2016 to SGI.
28. Upon information and belief, SGI's predecessors, Jai
Hanuman and Whitten Inn, are unable to provide certain relief
in this lawsuit, including re-instatement, injunctive relief
and other relief, that would involve the hotel in Taos, New
Mexico now under new ownership by SGI.
29. Upon information and belief, since at least 2016, SGI has
employed more than 15 employees.
30. Upon information and belief, since at least 2016, SGI has
continuously been an employer engaged in an industry
affecting commerce within the meaning of Sections 701(b), (g)
and (h) of title VII, 42 U.S.C. §§ 20003(b), (g)
31. Upon information and belief, SGI has substantially
continued the business operations of the Taos Hotel in Taos,
32. Upon information and belief, SGI has used and continues
to use the hotel building at the same physical location as
Defendant Witten Inn at 615 Paseo del Pueblo Sur, Taos, New
33. Upon information and belief, SGI has jobs with
substantially the same working conditions as those jobs that
Defendants had at all relevant times at 615 Paseo del ...