Plaintiff: Mark Lubelsky & Assocs., New York, New York
Defendants: Fox Rothschild LLP, New York, New York
P. BLUTH, J.
motion to dismiss by defendants' is denied and the
cross-motion to amend the complaint is granted.
case requires this Court to define the reach of marital
status discrimination claims under New York City's Human
Rights Law ("NYCHRL"). More specifically, this
motion requires the Court to explore the limits of employer
conduct towards an employee solely because of his perceived
began working for defendant Fidessa Corporation
("Fidessa"), a financial services firm, around June
2001. Plaintiff continued his employment with Fidessa, except
for a break between August 2006 and May 2007, until his
termination on July 28, 2016.
claims that he was fired due to his perceived relationship
with Lael Wakefield. Plaintiff began this relationship with
Wakefield in December 2004 and eventually married Wakefield
in November 2006. Plaintiff later divorced Wakefield in
September 2011, but continued to reside with her and their
children. Plaintiff claims that Fidessa thought he and
Wakefield were married at the time plaintiff was terminated.
was also employed by Fidessa. She worked at Fidessa from
about January 2000 until May 2016, when she left Fidessa and
began to work for another financial services firm. Plaintiff
claims that right after Wakefield left, he was suspended (on
June 25, 2016) and later fired in July 2016.
alleges that defendant Ames told plaintiff that he was
terminated due to plaintiff's marriage to Wakefield and
that plaintiff would be considered for future employment if
he ended his marriage to Wakefield. Plaintiff contends that
his termination was not based on his performance at work, any
misconduct, or because of any specific action he took while
working for Fidessa. Plaintiff argues that he was fired
because he was married (or perceived to be married or in a
partnership) to Wakefield.
move to dismiss on the ground that a claim for marital status
discrimination does not encompass the identity of the person
to whom someone is married. It only prohibits discrimination
based on whether someone is married, single, divorced, etc.
a CPLR 3211 motion to dismiss, the court will accept the
facts as alleged in the complaint as true, accord plaintiffs
the benefit of every possible favorable inference, and
determine only whether the facts as alleged fit within any
cognizable legal theory" (Nonnon v City of New
York, 9 N.Y.3d 825, 827, 842 ...