Dubois v. Packard Bell Corporation

Decision Date01 February 1973
Docket NumberNo. 72-1333.,72-1333.
Citation470 F.2d 973
PartiesBetty Lou DUBOIS, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. PACKARD BELL CORPORATION, a corporation registered to do business in New Mexico, d/b/a Albuquerque Job Corps Center For Women, Defendant-Appellee.
CourtU.S. Court of Appeals — Tenth Circuit

Gerald R. Lopez, Atty., Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Washington, D. C. (John de J. Pemberton, Jr., Acting General Counsel, and Julia P. Cooper, Chief, Appellate Section, Washington, D. C., on the brief amicus curiae), for appellant.

Bernard P. Metzgar, Albuquerque, N. M., on the briefs, for appellant.

Robert M. St. John, Albuquerque, N. M. (Rodey, Dickason, Sloan, Akin & Robb, P. A., Albuquerque, N. M., on the brief), for appellee.

Before MURRAH, SETH and DOYLE, Circuit Judges.

MURRAH, Circuit Judge.

Betty Lou Dubois resigned as an employee of the Albuquerque Job Corps Center for Women, operated and controlled by appellee Packard Bell Corporation. 144 days later she filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. She sought both injunctive and compensatory relief as provided under the Act. Inasmuch as subsection 706(b) of Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(b),1 requires that no charge may properly be filed with the EEOC until after proceedings have been commenced under applicable state law, the EEOC referred Mrs. Dubois' complaint to the New Mexico Human Rights Commission. The New Mexico Commission rejected the complaint as untimely under the 90-day filing period provided in N. M.Stat.Ann. § 4-33-9, subd. A (1971 Supp.), and returned it to the EEOC. When negotiations with Packard Bell failed, the EEOC notified Mrs. Dubois that she could bring suit pursuant to subsection 706(e).2

The trial court granted Packard Bell's motion for summary judgment on the ground that failure to file with the state agency within the 90-day period prescribed by the state statute precludes application of the extended federal filing period set forth in subsection 706(d) of Title VII. That subsection provides that where the state filing procedure set forth in subsection (b) has been followed, the 90-day federal filing period may be extended to either 210 days after the alleged unlawful employment practice occurred, or 30 days after receiving notice that the state or local agency has "terminated the proceedings under the State or local law," whichever is earlier.

As the case comes to us, Mrs. Dubois contends that once she has filed charges with the appropriate state agency — whether timely or not — she is entitled to the benefit of this extended federal filing period. The narrow question we must decide, then, is whether the New Mexico Commission's rejection of Mrs. Dubois' complaint because it was not timely filed was a termination of proceedings within the meaning of subsection 706(d) so as to qualify for the extended federal filing period. We hold it was not, and affirm the judgment.

In Love v. Pullman Co., 404 U.S. 522, 92 S.Ct. 616, 30 L.Ed.2d 679 (1972), and Vigil v. American Tel. & Tel. Co., 455 F.2d 1222 (10th Cir. 1972), recent cases relied upon by the EEOC in its amicus curiae brief, this Court also considered the filing requirements of subsections 706(b) and (d). These cases involved the filing of charges of unfair employment practices with the EEOC during or prior to consideration of the same complaints by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. While clearly establishing that the filing requirements of subsections 706(b) and (d) may be met by filing a complaint with the EEOC during the period when the state commission has exclusive jurisdiction to act, these decisions are surely distinguishable from the present controversy, inasmuch as timely filings of the Colorado complaints afforded the state commission a bona fide opportunity to act upon the claims — an opportunity denied the New Mexico Commission in our case.

This question is one of first impression, and if the legislative history of Title VII were not so manifestly clear as to remove all doubt, the liberal interpretation accorded remedial legislation of this type might leave some room for argument as to the...

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  • Baruah v. Young
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Maryland
    • March 24, 1982
    ...under state law was a necessary condition for the application of the 300-day EEOC filing period. Compare DuBois v. Packard Bell Corp., 470 F.2d 973, 974-75 (10th Cir. 1972) and Mobley v. Acme Markets, Inc., 473 F.Supp. 851, 856-57 (D.Md.1979) with EEOC v. Delaware Trust Co., 416 F.Supp. 104......
  • Gabriele v. Chrysler Corp.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Sixth Circuit
    • April 7, 1978
    ...as requiring such prior resort have done so because Title VII's legislative history is very clear on that point. Dubois v. Packard Bell Corp., 470 F.2d 973, 975 (10th Cir. 1972); Crosslin v. Mountain States Telephone & Telegraph Co., 422 F.2d 1028, 1030-31 (9th Cir. 1970), vacated and reman......
  • Holliday v. Ketchum, MacLeod & Grove, Inc.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Third Circuit
    • August 7, 1978
    ...as requiring such prior resort have done so because Title VII's legislative history is very clear on that point. Dubois v. Packard Bell Corp., 470 F.2d 973, 975 (10th Cir. 1972); Crosslin v. Mountain States Telephone & Telegraph Co., 422 F.2d 1028, 1030-31 (9th Cir. 1970), Vacated and reman......
  • Roberts v. Western Airlines
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Northern District of California
    • October 12, 1976
    ...Cir. 1974) (en banc) (to take advantage of 210-day limit, complainant must file state claim within 90 days); Dubois v. Packard Bell Corporation, 470 F.2d 973, 974 (10 Cir. 1972) (complainant must abide by state statute of limitations to take advantage of longer federal time 14 Under Califor......
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2 books & journal articles
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    • Colorado Bar Association Colorado Lawyer No. 03-1976, March 1976
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