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Legal Memorandum: Requirements for Filing Motion to Dismiss

Issue: What is required to withstand a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim in an action under 29 U.S.C. 185?

Area of Law: Employee Law, Litigation & Procedure
Keywords: Motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim; Actions by and against labor organizations; Notice
Jurisdiction: Federal, Virgin Islands
Cited Cases: 7 F.3d 357; 620 F.2d 29
Cited Statutes: 29 U.S.C. 185; Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6)
Date: 01/01/2009

29 U.S.C. § 185 authorizes actions by and against labor organizations.  On a Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim the burden is on the defendant, the moving party, to show it is entitled to dismissal. Johnsrud v. Carter, 620 F.2d 29, 32-33 (3d Cir. 1980).  Whether or not the plaintiff is likely to prevail in the end is not the issue; rather, once a claim has been stated adequately, it may be supported by showing any set of facts consistent with the allegations.  Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S. Ct. 1955, 1969 (2007).  All that is required is that the claim be “plausible.”  Id. at 1974.  Indeed, at the pleading stage, there is no requirement that the alleged facts even be probable; instead, “a well-pleaded complaint may proceed even if it strikes a savvy judge that actual proof of those facts is improbable, and that a recovery is very remote and unlikely.”  Id. at 1965.   

To withstand a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), only “notice pleading” is required.  Weston v. Pennsylvania, 251 F.3d 420, 429 (3d Cir. 2001).  Plaintiff “is not required to state the legal theory behind the claim or the statutory basis for such claim so long as the defendant has enough information to frame an answer and commence discovery.”  Etienne v. Oyake, 347 F. Supp. 2d 215, 219 (D.V.I. 2004).  The key inquiry is merely whether the defendant has “fair notice” of […]

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