Saturday, April 14, 2012

NAUGLER v. AIR LINE PILOTS ASSOCIATION, INTERNATIONAL United States District Court, E.D. New York.

Seth Naugler, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
Air Line Pilots Association, International, and Duane E. Woerth, in his official capacity, Defendants.
No. 05 CV 4751 (NG) (VVP).
United States District Court, E.D. New York.

April 10, 2012.

OPINION & ORDER

NINA GERSHON, District Judge.


Plaintiffs are U.S. Airways, Inc. ("US Airways") pilots who agreed to work for MidAtlantic Airways ("MidAtlantic" or "MDA"), a division of the US Airways mainline operation. Defendant Air Line Pilots Association International ("ALPA") is an unincorporated labor union that served as the exclusive collective bargaining representative for all the US Airways pilots, including plaintiffs, during all times relevant to this case. Defendant Duane E. Woerth was the President of ALP A and is named in his official capacity.

After all counts in their First Amended Complaint were dismissed, plaintiffs filed a Supplemental Complaint, with leave of court, stating a single claim for breach of the duty of fair representation ("DFR") against ALPA and Mr. Woerth, alleging that ALPA knew of, and stipulated to, the introduction of an erroneous, previously corrected seniority list during arbitration proceedings regarding the integration of pilot seniority lists when US Airways merged with America West Airlines, Inc. ("America West").

Now before the court is defendants' motion for summary judgment pursuant to Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure seeking to have the Supplemental Complaint dismissed with prejudice. For the reasons stated below, defendants' motion is granted.
FACTS

Unless otherwise indicated, the following facts are undisputed.

A. Background

Plaintiffs are pilots who flew Embraer-170 aircraft for MidAtlantic Airways, a division of US Airways, from 2004, when MidAtlantic launched until 2006, when MidAtlantic operations ceased. At the time they flew for MidAtlantic, some of the plaintiffs had been furloughed from their positions at US Airways. Others had flown only for wholly-owned subsidiaries of US Airways.

ALPA is a labor union that represents pilots who fly commercial aircraft at approximately 37 airlines in the United States and Canada. At each airline, ALPA acts through a Master Executive Council ("MEC") that is comprised of pilots from the represented airline and serves as the coordinating council for union membership at that airline. At all relevant times, ALPA served as the exclusive bargaining representative for all pilots at US Airways, including furloughed pilots and those at wholly owned subsidiaries, through the US Airways MEC. Defendant Duane E. Woerth is the former President of ALPA and held that office until he was succeeded by Captain John Prater on January 1, 2007. Since April 2008, pilots at US Airways have been represented by the U.S. Airline Pilots Association ("USAPA").

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