Judge Says No to New, Expanded Complaint in Age Discrimination Suit Against PGW
November 1, 2011

A federal judge in Pennsylvania has denied a request from the plaintiffs in a suit filed against Pittsburgh Glass Works (PGW) last September alleging age discrimination.

The plaintiffs include seven former employees who allege they were let go in March 2009 due to their age. They had requested for the court to allow them to file a new complaint that would have added allegations that PGW failed "to adhere to extensive and long-standing written policies and procedures governing how RIFs were to be conducted within the organization, that had been in place within the automotive glass business when it was owned by PPG."

The new complaint would have further alleged that "at the direction of Kohlberg and company … and Kohlberg principal and CEO of PGW, Jim Wiggins, PGW arbitrarily employed such policies and practices systematically and continuously to discriminate against older workers."

The court had previously set a deadline of April 15 for any such amendments, though plaintiffs allege that through discovery they've learned more about how the layoffs came about and how those affected were chosen.

The court ruled that the plaintiffs "have not shown good cause" for a change of dates and permission to file the complaint.
"In this court's estimation, plaintiffs have not demonstrated that they were diligent in pursuing the discovery that they claim led to the motion to amend," writes Judge Nora Barry Fischer. "To the contrary, plaintiffs' argument in its reply demonstrates that they were anything but diligent in pursuing the relevant discovery."

Fischer also says there is a flaw in the plaintiffs' argument that late discovery is what led to the request. "Plaintiffs argue that they did not receive the discovery, which presumably led to their motion to amend, until June and July of 2011," she writes. "The court notes that the vast majority of Defendant's written discovery response was produced by June 23, 2011-only 17 of 6,446 pages were produced thereafter."

The plaintiffs also are seeking class certification in the case, and the court argues that "a diligent party should file the motion to amend before the deadline for certification."

"The foregoing makes clear that plaintiffs failed to demonstrate that they exercised due diligence in seeking the discovery they now claim to be critical to their proposed amendment," adds Fischer.

The denial was issued yesterday. The court has not yet ruled on the motion for class certification in the suit.

This story is an original story by AGRR™ magazine/glassBYTEs.com™. Subscribe to AGRR™ Magazine.
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