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Diaz v. Macy's West Stores, Inc.

United States District Court, C.D. California

December 6, 2019

YURIRIA DIAZ, as an individual and on behalf of others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
v.
MACY'S WEST STORES, INC. dba Macy's, an Ohio corporation, and DOES 1-50, inclusive Defendants.

          AMENDED ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO DISMISS [20]

          OTIS D. WRIGHT, II UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Before the Court is Defendant Macy's West Stores, Inc. dba Macy's (“Macy's”) Motion to Dismiss for failure to state a claim and failure to exhaust administrative requirements. (Mot. to Dismiss (“Mot.”), ECF No. 20.)[1] For the following reasons, Macy's Motion is GRANTED.

         II. BACKGROUND

         On November 20, 2018, Plaintiff Yuriria Diaz-a former retail worker-filed this wage and hour action in the Superior Court of California, on behalf of herself and others similarly situated, against her former employer, Macy's. (Notice of Removal (“Notice”) Ex. A (“Compl.”), ECF No. 1-1.) On January 22, 2019, Diaz amended her complaint in the state court proceedings. (See Notice 3, Ex. H (“First Am. Compl.”), ECF No. 1-8.) On February 14, 2019, Macy's removed this action to federal court. (See Notice, ECF No. 1).

         On May 6, 2019, the parties filed their Joint Rule 26(f) Report. (See Joint Report, ECF No. 13.) Therein, the parties explained that the parties' arbitration agreement requires arbitration of Diaz's individual employment-related claims and precludes her from proceeding with litigation on a class-wide basis. (Joint Report 3.) As a result, Diaz sought leave to amend her complaint to dismiss her class and individual California Labor Code (“Labor Code”) claims, and allege only a representative claim under the Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”), Labor Code section 2698 et seq. (Joint Report 3.) The Joint Report, signed and submitted by Diaz's counsel, stated that Diaz would “not renew her individual claims under the California Labor Code . . . in this or any other forum” if granted leave to amend. (Joint Report 3.) The following week, on May 10, 2019, the parties stipulated to allow Diaz to file a Second Amended Complaint (“SAC”). (Joint Stip. to Am., ECF No. 17.) The Court granted the stipulation and Diaz filed the operative SAC on May 13, 2019. (SAC, ECF No. 19.)

         In the SAC, Diaz alleges a single PAGA cause of action premised on various Labor Code violations, which include: (1) failure to maintain records and provide accurate itemized wage statements in violation of Labor Code sections 226, 1198, and Wage Order 7, section 7; (2) failure to pay minimum wages and proper overtime wages in violation of Labor Code sections 510, 1194, 1198, and Wage Order 7, section 3; (3) failure to reimburse for all necessary expenditures or losses in violation of Labor Code section 2802; (4) failure to pay all wages upon termination in violation of Labor Code section 203; and (5) failure to provide suitable seating in violation of Wage Order 7, section 14. (SAC ¶ 31(a)-(f).)

         Macy's moves to dismiss Diaz's SAC for lack of standing and failure to exhaust administrative requirements. (Mot. 10-11.)

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         A court may dismiss a complaint under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (“Rule”) 12(b)(6) for lack of a cognizable legal theory or insufficient facts pleaded to support an otherwise cognizable legal theory. Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1988). To survive a dismissal motion, a complaint need only satisfy the minimal notice pleading requirements of Rule 8(a)(2)-a short and plain statement of the claim. Porter v. Jones, 319 F.3d 483, 494 (9th Cir. 2003). The factual “allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). That is, the complaint must “contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (internal quotation marks omitted).

         Whether a complaint satisfies the plausibility standard is a “context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and common sense.” Id. at 679. A court must construe all “factual allegations set forth in the complaint . . . as true and . . . in the light most favorable” to the plaintiff. Lee v. City of Los Angeles, 250 F.3d 668, 679 (9th Cir. 2001). However, a court need not blindly accept conclusory allegations, unwarranted deductions of fact, and unreasonable inferences. Sprewell v. Golden State Warriors, 266 F.3d 979, 988 (9th Cir. 2001).

         Where a district court grants a motion to dismiss, it should generally provide leave to amend unless it is clear the complaint could not be saved by any amendment. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a); Manzarek v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 519 F.3d 1025, 1031 (9th Cir. 2008). Leave to amend may be denied when “the court determines that the allegation of other facts consistent with the challenged pleading could not possibly cure the deficiency.” Schreiber Distrib. Co. v. Serv-Well Furniture Co., 806 F.2d 1393, 1401 (9th Cir. 1986). Thus, leave to amend “is properly denied . . . if amendment would be futile.” Carrico v. City and Cty. of San Francisco, 656 F.3d 1002, 1008 (9th Cir. 2011).

         IV. REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE

         As a preliminary matter, both parties request that the Court take judicial notice of various documents. (See Macy's Req. Judicial Notice (“RJN”), ECF No. 21; Diaz RJN, ECF No. 22-1.) Although a court is generally limited to the pleadings in ruling on a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, it may consider documents incorporated by reference in the complaint or properly subject to judicial notice without converting the motion into one for summary judgment. Lee, 250 F.3d at 688-89. The Court may take judicial notice of “fact[s] . . . not subject to reasonable dispute” because they are “generally known within the trial court's territorial jurisdiction” or “can be accurately and readily determined from sources whose accuracy cannot ...


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