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TARTT v. NORTHWEST COMMUNITY HOSPITAL

October 1, 2004.

DERRICK B. TARTT, Plaintiff,
v.
NORTHWEST COMMUNITY HOSPITAL[fn1] and NORTHWEST SUBURBAN ANESTHESIOLOGISTS, LTD. Defendants.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: CHARLES NORGLE, District Judge

*fn1 Plaintiff Tartt improperly names Defendant Northwest Community Hospital as Northwest Community Healthcare.

OPINION AND ORDER

Plaintiff Derrick Tartt ("Tartt"), a licensed anesthesiologist, has filed his second Amended Complaint against Defendants Northwest Community Hospital ("NCH") and Northwest Suburban Anesthesiologists ("NSA"). Tartt alleges employment discrimination in violation of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 ("USERRA"), and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ("Title VII").

  Presently before the court are a total of five motions. The following motions are granted: NCH's Motion to Strike [97-1], NCH's Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint [91-1], and NSA's Motion to Dismiss Amended Complaint [90-1]. The following motions are denied: NCH's Rule 11 Motion for Sanctions [90-2], and Tartt's Motion for Leave of the Court to File The Plaintiff's Answers to the Defendants' Motions to Dismiss Our Amended Complaint, Instanter [92-1].

  I. INTRODUCTION

  A. Background

  In order to properly understand the motions before the court, the court undertakes a brief analysis of the protracted history of Tartt's litigation against the Defendants. In July 1993, Plaintiff Tartt, African American, signed an employment contract with NSA. Mem. of Law in Supp. of Def. NCH's Mot. to Dismiss Am. Compl., 1, Ex. A. NSA provided anesthesiology services to NCH. Tartt worked for NSA, at NCH, as an anesthesiologist until July 1994. At that time, Tartt took a leave of absence in order to join the United States military.*fn2 Tartt was honorably discharged from the military, and returned to NSA and NCH in December 1996.

  NSA asserts that while Tartt was in the military, he practiced anesthesiology at NCH (in violation of his employment agreement), and misappropriated the proceeds he received for those services. As a condition of his continued employment with NSA, Tartt signed a revised employment contract in April 1997. Id., Ex. B. In that revised contract, Tartt acknowledged that he had violated provisions of the initial employment contract during his leave of absence, and agreed to repay the $18,250 he had misappropriated from NSA during that time. Id., Ex. B, 1-2. Tartt worked for NSA, at NCH, until NSA terminated Tartt's employment in November 2000. On December 20, 2000, Tartt filed a pro se complaint (case number 00-C-7960) against NSA and NCH, seeking relief under USERRA*fn3 and Title VII. On that same date, Tartt filed a nearly identical pro se complaint (case number 00-C-7959) against NSA alone. The essence of Tartt's complaints is that, following Tartt's return from military service, the revised employment agreement Tartt signed with NSA unlawfully denied Tartt employment benefits that he would have obtained but for his race and his military service. For purposes of clarity, the court will refer to the instant case, case number 00-C-7960, as "7960," and Tartt's second case, case number 00-C-7959, as "7959."

  The court dismissed 7960 in March 2001, noting that Tartt could not proceed on his Title VII claim, as he had failed to first file a discrimination charge with the EEOC, nor could he proceed on his USERRA claim, as it was "rambling, confusing, not concise, not short and plain." See Minute Order of Mar. 1, 2001. The court, however, granted Tartt leave to file an Amended Complaint. Id. Tartt then filed, pro se, Amended Complaints in both 7959 and 7960. The first Amended Complaint in 7960, filed March 23, 2001, again alleged employment discrimination based on Tartt's race and military service. This Complaint was thirty-four pages long, failed to include numbers for all paragraphs, and contained a rambling nineteen page section styled "Federal Question Jurisdiction." Both Defendants filed Motions to Dismiss, asserting that Tartt's claims must fail, as Tartt was never employed by the NCH, stated no cognizable claim under USERRA, and failed to file a EEOC complaint. The court denied these motions, but, sua sponte, noted that cases 7959 and 7960 appeared to be nearly identical, and issued a rule to show cause as to why one of them should not be dismissed. Tartt, by now represented by counsel, failed to respond to the court's rule. The court therefore dismissed 7960. See Minute Order of May 30, 2002.

  Tartt then filed a Motion to Reconsider the court's dismissal of 7960, which the court denied. On appeal, however, the Seventh Circuit reversed and remanded. Tartt v. Northwest Comty. Hosp., No. 03-1558, 2003 U.S. App. LEXIS 21917 (7th Cir. Oct. 21, 2003). The court then granted Tartt leave to file a second Amended Complaint.*fn4

  Tartt then filed the second Amended Complaint, in case 00-C-7960, on April 23, 2004. In this Complaint, filed against Defendants NSA and NCH, Tartt once again asserts violations of USERRA and Title VII. See Tartt's second Amended Complaint of April 23, 2004. Tartt once again asserts that NSA and NCH discriminated against him on the basis of his military service and race, and alleges that this discrimination adversely impacted his right to retirement benefits, stock ownership, promotions, increases in salary, and training. Id. at ¶ 27-28. In response, Defendants assert that these claims are barred by the principle of res judicata, and that Tartt has failed to state a claim under which relief can be granted.

  B. Procedural Framework

  Following Tartt's second Amended Complaint, the parties filed a total of five motions: 1) on May 27, 2004, Defendant NCH filed a Motion to Dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) [91-1]; 2) on May 27, 2004, Defendant NSA filed a Motion to Dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) [90-1]; 3) on May 27, 2004, Defendant NSA filed a Motion for Sanctions under Rule 11 against Tartt and Tartt's counsel [90-2]; 4) on June 10, 2004, Tartt filed a Motion for Leave of the Court to File the Plaintiff's Answer to the Defendants' Motions to Dismiss Our Amended Complaint, Instanter [92-1]; and 5) on August 6, 2004, NCH filed a Motion to Strike Plaintiff Tartt's Answer to Defendant Northwest Community Healthcare ...


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