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Barbara v. Here North America, LLC

United States District Court, N.D. California

April 2, 2018

LAMAR BARBARA, Plaintiff,
v.
HERE NORTH AMERICA, LLC, Defendant.

          ORDER DENYING HERE NORTH AMERICA'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE A MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

          RICHARD SEEBORG United States District Judge.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Defendant HERE North America, LLC (“HERE”) moves for leave to file a motion for reconsideration of the order denying its motion for summary judgment. Because it is based on a flawed interpretation of the Court's order, the motion is denied.

         II. BACKGROUND

         On January 29, 2018, the Court issued an order denying HERE's motion for summary judgment on all of plaintiff Lamar Barbara's claims in connection with the termination of his employment at HERE. The order concludes that Barbara's allegations of racial animus on the part of his direct supervisor, Cyrus McGuire, were sufficient to raise a material issue of fact as to whether HERE's proffered nondiscriminatory reasons for Barbara's termination were in fact a pretext for discrimination. Accordingly, HERE's motion for summary judgment was denied as to Barbara's discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful termination claims. On February 21, 2018, HERE filed a motion for leave to file a motion for reconsideration of the Court's summary judgment determination.

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         A party seeking leave to file a motion for reconsideration must show:

(1) That at the time of the motion for leave, a material difference in fact or law exists from that which was presented to the Court before entry of the interlocutory order for which reconsideration is sought. The party also must show that in the exercise of reasonable diligence the party applying for reconsideration did not know such fact or law at the time of the interlocutory order; or
(2) The emergence of new material facts or a change of law occurring after the time of such order; or
(3) A manifest failure by the Court to consider material facts or dispositive legal arguments which were presented to the Court before such interlocutory order.

Civ. Local R. 7-9(b). “No motion for leave to file a motion for reconsideration may repeat any oral or written argument made by the applying party in support of or in opposition to the interlocutory order which the party now seeks to have reconsidered.” Civ. Local R. 7-9(c). “Any party who violates this restriction shall be subject to appropriate sanctions.” Id.

         IV. DISCUSSION

         HERE's proposed basis for reconsideration is that the order applies a mixed-motives analysis and manifestly failed to consider the parties' arguments that the McDonnell Douglas framework applied instead. This is an incorrect characterization of the Court's reasoning.

         According to HERE, “the Court concluded that a jury could not rationally find HERE's reason for layoff was false, but that a triable issue remained as to whether the reason proffered was pretextual given that race might also have played a role.” Mot. for Leave for Reconsideration at 2. Had this been an accurate interpretation of the Court's order, it would indeed have reflected an application of mixed-motive rather than burden-shifting analysis. Upon closer scrutiny, however, it is clear ...


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