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Bruce G. Schoggen v. Hawaii Aviation Contract Services

June 28, 2012

BRUCE G. SCHOGGEN,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
HAWAII AVIATION CONTRACT SERVICES, INC., AND DOES 1- 10, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Leslie E. Kobayashi United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS THIS ACTION WITH PREJUDICE

Before the Court is Defendant Hawaii Aviation Contract Services, Inc.'s ("HACS") Motion to Dismiss this Action with Prejudice ("Motion"), filed on March 5, 2012. HACS also filed a supplemental memorandum in support of the Motion on April 16, 2012. Plaintiff Bruce G. Schoggen ("Plaintiff") filed his memorandum in opposition on April 23, 2012, and HACS filed its reply on April 27, 2012. This matter came on for hearing on June 4, 2012. Appearing on behalf of HACS was Carl Osaki, Esq., and appearing on behalf of Plaintiff, who was present, was Ira Dennis Hawver, Esq. After careful consideration of the Motion, supporting and opposing memoranda, and the arguments of counsel, HACS's Motion is HEREBY GRANTED because res judicata bars all of Plaintiff's claims for the reasons set forth below.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff was employed by HACS pursuant to a "Pilot Contract" dated January 27, 1993. Pursuant to the automatic renewal provision, Plaintiff renewed the Pilot Contract in 1998 and 2003. [Complaint at ¶¶ 6-8.] The instant case arises from HACS's termination of Plaintiff's Pilot Contract in September 2004 for medical reasons. Plaintiff denies that HACS had a valid basis to terminate the Pilot Contract. [Id. at ¶¶ 11-12.]

Pursuant to the Pilot Contract's mandatory arbitration clause, Plaintiff filed a motion in this district court to compel arbitration. Then-Chief United States District Judge David Alan Ezra granted the motion on May 17, 2005. His order stated that Plaintiff could file a new action in this district court if issues remained after the arbitration.*fn1 [Id. at ¶¶ 15-16.]

The arbitration hearing went forward on September 26 and 27, 2006. The arbitrator issued a Partial Final Award of Arbitration dated November 13, 2006 ("November 2006 Award"), finding, inter alia, that HACS's termination of Plaintiff breached the Pilot Contract.*fn2 The arbitrator ordered HACS to make a good faith effort to have Plaintiff certified by the Japan Civil Aeronautics Bureau to fly and to reassign Plaintiff to fly for Japan Airlines. The arbitrator issued a Second Partial Final Award of Arbitrator on January 10, 2007 ("January 2007 Award").*fn3

The January 2007 Award, inter alia, gave HACS until January 22, 2007 to respond to Plaintiff's Motion for Front Pay Award, including a request for further hearing. [Id. at ¶¶ 21-23.]

The arbitrator issued the Final Award of Arbitrator on March 5, 2007 ("Final Award").*fn4 The Final Award noted that HACS submitted a Motion for Instructions, which asserted that HACS had made a good faith effort to comply with the terms of the November 2006 Award. The Final Award denied both Plaintiff's Motion for Front Pay Award and HACS's Motion for Instructions. The Final Award stated that it fully settled all of the claims and counterclaims in the arbitration. [Id. at ¶ 25.]

Plaintiff states that, since the Final Award, HACS has neither allowed him to work nor paid him pursuant to the Pilot Contract. Plaintiff argues that his termination constitutes age discrimination because it occurred shortly before his sixtieth birthday. Plaintiff also argues that his termination constitutes disability discrimination because HACS breached the Pilot Contract during a time when HACS claimed Plaintiff suffered from a medical disability. [Id. at ¶¶ 26-28.] Thus, the Complaint alleges federal and state age discrimination claims, disability discrimination claims, and perceived disability discrimination claims, as well as several state contract and tort claims. Plaintiff primarily seeks relief because HACS allegedly failed to reinstate him and failed to pay him front pay from the time of the Final Award until he became ineligible for employment under the terms of the Pilot Contract.

At issue in the instant Motion is whether the res judicata, or claim preclusion, doctrine bars Plaintiff's claims in the instant case. This Court concludes that Plaintiff's claims are barred.

DISCUSSION

I. Judicial Notice

HACS asks this Court to take judicial notice of the proceedings in the Compel Action and the proceedings in the action to confirm the arbitration award, Schoggen v. Hawaii Aviation Contract Services, et al., CV 07-00149 SOM-KSC ("Confirmation Action"), in which United States District Judge Susan Oki Mollway*fn5 confirmed the three arbitration awards.*fn6 What the parties stated in their filings and what the district judges ruled in their respective orders in the Compel Action and the Confirmation Action are facts that are not subject to reasonable dispute because they "can be accurately and readily determined from sources whose accuracy cannot reasonably be questioned." See Fed. R. ...


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