Williams v. Hy's Livery Service Inc.
Connecticut General Statutes §52-592 permits a plaintiff whose original action was filed timely and was not tried on the merits to commence another suit within one year of the dismissal of the original action. Allegedly, a driver was not properly dispatched to the airport, and the defendant employer discharged the plaintiff dispatcher. In August 2003, the plaintiff filed a complaint to the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, alleging that he was discharged because he protested race discrimination. In August 2004, the CHRO released its jurisdiction. In November 2004, the plaintiff sued the defendant employer. In September 2008, the plaintiff was nonsuited, and the original complaint was dismissed. In March 2009, the plaintiff filed the present suit. The defendant employer moved to dismiss and argued that the plaintiff did not file his March 17, 2009, complaint within 90 days of the Aug. 18, 2004 date that the CHRO released its jurisdiction. Connecticut General Statutes §46a-101(e) provides, "Any action brought by the complainant in accordance with section 46a-100 shall be brought within ninety days of the receipt of the release from the commission." The court found that the plaintiff's original complaint was commenced timely, on Nov. 8, 2004, which was within 90 days of Aug. 18, 2004. C.G.S. §52-592 saved the March 2009 complaint, because it was filed within one year of the court's September 2008 dismissal of the first complaint. The court denied the defendant's motion to dismiss on the grounds that the plaintiff did not file the complaint within 90 days of the receipt of the CHRO's release of jurisdiction. The defendant also moved to dismiss, because allegedly the plaintiff failed to serve a copy of his complaint on the CHRO until April 2012. Other Superior Court decisions have held that failure to serve the CHRO, which is not a necessary party, can be cured, if the plaintiff subsequently serves the CHRO. The court found that the plaintiff's alleged failure to serve the CHRO at the time the plaintiff served the defendant did not deprive the court of subject-matter jurisdiction, and it denied the defendant employer's motion to dismiss.