United States District Court, D. Oregon
JUDITH C. KLANDERUD, Plaintiff,
MEGAN J. BRENNAN, POSTMASTER GENERAL, Defendant.
OPINION AND ORDER
Michael McShane, United States District Judge
Judith C. Klanderud, appearing pro se, filed this
action pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Rehabilitation Act.
Pl.'s Second Am. Compl. (“SAC”) 3, ECF No.
20. Defendant moves to dismiss Plaintiff's workers'
compensation-related claim for lack of subject matter
jurisdiction. Def.'s Mot. 1, ECF No. 23. Because the
Court does not have jurisdiction to review claims related to
workers' compensation, Defendant's Motion to Dismiss
alleges, among other things, that Defendant failed to process
her workers' compensation paperwork after she sustained a
workplace injury in 2013. SAC Ex. 1, at 1, ECF No. 20-1. She
alleges that, as a result, she was never compensated for her
used annual and sick leave time. Id. Plaintiff seeks
multiple forms of relief, including compensation for
Defendant's failure to complete the paperwork she needed
to receive workers' compensation and her “loss of
[workers'] compensation medical settlement amount and
medical expenses.” SAC 6; SAC Ex. 1, at 1.
courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. Exxon Mobil
Corp. v. Allapattah Servs., Inc., 545 U.S. 546, 552
(2005). A defendant may move to dismiss under Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(b)(1) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. It is
presumed that a district court lacks jurisdiction and
“the burden of establishing the contrary rests upon the
party asserting jurisdiction.” Vacek v. United
States Postal Serv., 447 F.3d 1248, 1250 (9th Cir.
2006). The court will grant a defendant's 12(b)(1) motion
if the complaint fails to allege facts sufficient to
establish subject matter jurisdiction. Savage v. Glendale
Union High Sch., 343 F.3d 1036, 1039 n.2 (9th Cir.
2003). When evaluating an attack on jurisdiction, the court
accepts as true all factual allegations set forth in the
complaint. United States v. One 1997 Mercedes E420,
175 F.3d 1129, 1130 n.1 (9th Cir. 1999).
survive a motion to dismiss under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), a
complaint must contain sufficient factual matter that
“state[s] a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 570 (2007). A claim is plausible on its face when
the factual allegations allow the court to infer the
defendant's liability based on the alleged conduct.
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 663 (2009). The
factual allegations must present more than “the mere
possibility of misconduct.” Id. at 678.
Court generally lacks jurisdiction to review claims involving
The Federal Employees Compensation Act (“FECA”).
See 5 U.S.C. §§ 8101-8151. FECA governs
federal workers' compensation claims. See Id.
Section 8128(b) provides that “[t]he action of the
Secretary or his designee in allowing or denying a payment
under this subchapter is . . . not subject to review by
another official of the United States or by a court by
mandamus or otherwise.” This is a
“preclusion-of-review” statute, where federal
courts have no jurisdiction to review the Secretary of Labor
and her agents' final judgments. Staacke v. U.S.
Secretary of Labor, 841 F.2d 278, 281 (citing
Lindahl v. Office of Personnel Management, 470 U.S.
768, 779-80 and n.13). The Office of Workers'
Compensation Programs (“OWCP”) is responsible for
administering and enforcing all matters within FECA. 20
C.F.R. § 10.1.
the preclusion of review, a federal court has jurisdiction to
review matters relating to FECA when: (1) there is a
constitutional claim; and (2) a defendant is alleged to have
violated a statutory mandate. Garner v. United States
Department of Defense, No. CV-17-00459, 2017 WL 5885469,
at *3 (D. Ariz. Nov. 29, 2017) (citing Staacke, 841
F.2d at 281). “[A] mere allegation of a constitutional
violation, ” however, is not “sufficient to avoid
the effect of a statutory finality provision.”
Rodrigues v. Donovan, 769 F.2d 1344, 1348 (9th Cir.
1985) (citing Reid v. Engen, 765 F.2d 1457, 1461
(9th Cir. 1985)).
it is unclear where Plaintiff's workers' compensation
claim stands. She alleges that Defendant failed to process
her paperwork relating to an “accepted OWCP
claim” which “awarded” her a Rehabilitation
Act job at the Salem Main Post Office. SAC Ex. 1, at 10.
Plaintiff does not, however, allege facts sufficient to
maintain a constitutional or statutory mandate violation
claim. Moreover, Plaintiff apparently failed to sign certain
OWCP documents, which undermines her allegations against
Defendant. SAC Ex. 1, at 2. Even if Plaintiff could properly
allege that Defendant failed to process her paperwork, the
issue would be within the purview of the OWCP.
rather than seeking a court order requiring Defendant to
process her workers' compensation paperwork, Plaintiff
seeks compensation for Defendant's failure to do so. This
would require the Court to inquire into the substance of
Plaintiff's workers' compensation claim, which the
Court declines to do. Plaintiff may seek redress with the
foregoing reasons, Defendant's Motion to Dismiss ...