Egelston v. State University College at Geneseo, No. 1050

CourtU.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
Writing for the CourtBefore KAUFMAN, Chief Judge, CLARK; IRVING R. KAUFMAN; Burke
Citation535 F.2d 752
Docket NumberNo. 1050,D
Decision Date07 June 1976
Parties12 Fair Empl.Prac.Cas. 1484, 12 Empl. Prac. Dec. P 11,004 Judy C. EGELSTON, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. STATE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE AT GENESEO et al., Defendants-Appellees. ocket 76-7047.

Page 752

535 F.2d 752
12 Fair Empl.Prac.Cas. 1484,
12 Empl. Prac. Dec. P 11,004
Judy C. EGELSTON, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
STATE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE AT GENESEO et al., Defendants-Appellees.
No. 1050, Docket 76-7047.
United States Court of Appeals,
Second Circuit.
Argued June 4, 1976.
Decided June 7, 1976.

Page 753

Emmelyn Logan-Baldwin, Rochester, N. Y., for plaintiff-appellant.

Dominick J. Tuminaro, Asst. Atty. Gen. of the State of New York, New York City (Louis J. Lefkowitz, Atty. Gen., New York City, on the brief), for defendants-appellees.

John Schmelzer, Washington, D. C., Abner W. Sibal, Gen. Counsel, Joseph T. Eddins, Jr., Associate Gen. Counsel, Beatrice Rosenberg, and Charles L. Reischel, Washington, D. C., for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, appearing as amicus curiae urging reversal.

Before KAUFMAN, Chief Judge, CLARK, Associate Justice, * and TIMBERS, Circuit Judge.

IRVING R. KAUFMAN, Chief Judge:

Occasionally, there is a tendency on the part of a judge to attempt to avoid a trial where it appears to him ab initio that the trial might be a waste of time or of no avail to the plaintiff. With the crowded dockets and delay occasioned by oppressive judicial workloads, a judge may well overlook the fact that a complaint states a valid cause of action or, out of a desire to eliminate an action which he considers frivolous, dismiss it before the curtain has risen on the case. Such conditions may have impelled Judge Burke to dismiss Dr. Judy Egelston's Title VII complaint upon its face and without more. But it is important that we emphasize the principle that our concern for efficiency must never be permitted to outweigh our concern for individual rights particularly when the bare allegations of a complaint, read in a light most favorable to the plaintiff, (as we must at this posture of the case) state a valid claim. Accordingly, we reverse the dismissal and remand for further proceedings.

I.

Dr. Egelston's complaint provides the sparse factual record for this appeal. In September, 1970 Dr. Egelston was hired by State University College at Geneseo (Geneseo) as an assistant professor in the Division of Educational Studies. Her teaching contract was due to expire in June, 1973. In March, 1972, the faculty's tenure committee recommended that the contract be renewed, yet Geneseo's administration decided not to extend it. No reasons for this decision were given and, although the protests of the tenure committee were registered, reconsideration was refused. On May 15, 1972, Dr. Egelston was notified of the decision,

Page 754

and she continued to teach at Geneseo until her contract expired in June, 1973.

Several months earlier, on January 24, 1973, Dr. Egelston, pro se, filed a charge with the Office of Federal Contract Compliance (OFCC). Two weeks later, she filed a complaint with the New York State Division of Human Rights which, after investigation, found probable cause to believe that her termination was improperly motivated.

Meanwhile, after obtaining a right-to-sue notice from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Dr. Egelston brought suit in the Western District of New York against Geneseo pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f). 1 In her complaint, she alleged that her discharge had been motivated by her sex; that throughout her employment she was paid less than males performing similar work; and that after her discharge, and as a result of her complaint to the OFCC, neither she nor her husband were able to find employment within New York's State University system. Her complaint further stated that all this was but a manifestation of the college's practice of excluding women from certain job classifications, paying them lower salaries than their male counterparts, precluding them from admission to training programs, and denying them promotions and transfers.

Before an answer was even filed, the defendants moved to dismiss, contending that Dr. Egelston had failed to comply with the requirements of 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(e). This section provides that a charge must be filed with the EEOC within 180 days after the alleged unlawful employment practice occurred, unless the complainant "has initially instituted proceedings with a State or local agency." In the latter case, the time period is expanded to 300 days.

Judge Burke granted the motion to dismiss. The portion of his brief memorandum dealing with Dr. Egelston's Title VII claims is quoted in its entirety:

The complaint herein was filed January 6, 1975. (We note, parenthetically, that this was the date on which suit was filed in the District Court; the relevant date, of course, was that on which a charge was filed with the agency.) The plaintiff has not...

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171 practice notes
  • Sadhu Singh Hamdad Trust v. Ajit Newspaper Adv., No. 04 CV 3503(CLP).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • August 14, 2007
    ...can. prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle him to relief." Egelston v. State Univ. Coll. at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 754 (2d Cir.1976) (internal citations omitted); see also Auletta v. Tully, 576 F.Supp. 191, 194-95 (N.D.NX.1983), aff'd, 732 F.2d 142 (2d Cir.1......
  • Tarr v. Credit Suisse Asset Management, Inc., No. 95 CV 1857(FB).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • April 11, 1997
    ...take a "flexible stance in interpreting Title VII's procedural provisions." Egelston v. State University College at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 755 (2d Cir.1976). Accordingly, the Second Circuit has created an exception to the general rule that a Title VII defendant must have been name......
  • Lopez v. Bulova Watch Co., Inc., Civ. A. No. 83-0585S.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Rhode Island
    • March 19, 1984
    ...E.g., Morgan v. Washington Manufacturing Co., 660 F.2d 710, 712 (6th Cir. 1981); Egelston v. State University College at Genesco, 535 F.2d 752, 755 n. 4 (2d Cir.1976). And, even in this novel ADEA configuration, the plaintiffs' position is at first blush more akin to that of claimants who b......
  • Union Labor Life Insurance Co. v. Olsten Corp. Health, No. 01-CV-6259 (DLI)(CLP).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • March 26, 2008
    ...remedy, cutting off the rights of the nonmoving party to present a case to the jury, see Egelston v. State Univ. College at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 754 (2d Cir.1976); Page 140 v. City of New York, 612 F.Supp. 125, 133-34 (E.D.N.Y.1985) (stating that summary judgment "is a drastic remedy......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
171 cases
  • Sadhu Singh Hamdad Trust v. Ajit Newspaper Adv., No. 04 CV 3503(CLP).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • August 14, 2007
    ...can. prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle him to relief." Egelston v. State Univ. Coll. at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 754 (2d Cir.1976) (internal citations omitted); see also Auletta v. Tully, 576 F.Supp. 191, 194-95 (N.D.NX.1983), aff'd, 732 F.2d 142 (2d Cir.1......
  • Tarr v. Credit Suisse Asset Management, Inc., No. 95 CV 1857(FB).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • April 11, 1997
    ...take a "flexible stance in interpreting Title VII's procedural provisions." Egelston v. State University College at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 755 (2d Cir.1976). Accordingly, the Second Circuit has created an exception to the general rule that a Title VII defendant must have been name......
  • Lopez v. Bulova Watch Co., Inc., Civ. A. No. 83-0585S.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Rhode Island
    • March 19, 1984
    ...E.g., Morgan v. Washington Manufacturing Co., 660 F.2d 710, 712 (6th Cir. 1981); Egelston v. State University College at Genesco, 535 F.2d 752, 755 n. 4 (2d Cir.1976). And, even in this novel ADEA configuration, the plaintiffs' position is at first blush more akin to that of claimants who b......
  • Union Labor Life Insurance Co. v. Olsten Corp. Health, No. 01-CV-6259 (DLI)(CLP).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of New York)
    • March 26, 2008
    ...remedy, cutting off the rights of the nonmoving party to present a case to the jury, see Egelston v. State Univ. College at Geneseo, 535 F.2d 752, 754 (2d Cir.1976); Page 140 v. City of New York, 612 F.Supp. 125, 133-34 (E.D.N.Y.1985) (stating that summary judgment "is a drastic remedy......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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