United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER OF REMAND
CATHERINE D. PERRY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Communications managers Terry Bechel, Stacy Hager, and Jamie
Clark are properly named as defendants in this employment
discrimination lawsuit brought under the Missouri Human
Rights Act (MHRA), so I will deny their motion to dismiss.
Because complete diversity does not exist in this state-law
cause of action, I will grant plaintiff's motion to
remand the case to state court.
Bryan McCulloch began working for defendant Charter
Communications in 2004 as a broadband technician and received
a series of promotions throughout his employment with
suffers from a mental condition for which he must
occasionally take medical leave. McCulloch claims that
Charter and the individual defendants - all managers at
Charter - changed his work schedule when he returned from a
four-month medical leave in March 2016, and repeatedly
subjected him to harassment upon his return from this and
other medical leaves. McCulloch also claims that Charter
refused to permit him to perform required work activities
while “on the clock, ” and that he was therefore
required to perform these activities on his own time.
began another medical leave in November 2016 and provided
medical information to Charter regarding his disability in
December 2016 and on January 4, 2017. Defendants terminated
McCulloch's employment on January 5, 2017.
filed a charge of discrimination with the Missouri Commission
on Human Rights on January 26, 2017, and was later issued a
notice of right to sue. On April 2, 2018, he filed this action
in the Circuit Court of St. Charles County, Missouri,
alleging that Charter, Bechel, Hager, and Clark discriminated
against him in his employment because of his disability and
retaliated against him for engaging in protected conduct, in
violation of the MHRA. McCulloch also brings a claim against
Charter for unpaid wages and liquidated damages under the
Missouri Minimum Wage Law, Mo. Rev. Stat. §§
290.500, et seq. Defendants removed the action to
this Court on May 11, 2018, invoking this Court's
diversity jurisdiction. Although McCulloch and the individual
defendants are Missouri citizens, defendants claim in their
notice of removal that these defendants were fraudulently
joined in this action and that their citizenship should be
disregarded for purposes of determining diversity
individual defendants now seek to dismiss McCulloch's
claims against them. I will deny the motion.
Bechel, Hager, and Clark argue that individuals are not
subject to liability under the MHRA and that McCulloch's
MHRA claims against them should therefore be dismissed.
time of the alleged discriminatory conduct and when McCulloch
filed his charge of discrimination, the MHRA provided that
individuals could be held liable under the MHRA. Mo. Rev.
Stat. § 213.010(7) (2016). Although that law was amended
effective August 28, 2017, and changed the definition of
“employer” to exclude individuals, Mo. Rev. Stat.
§ 213.010(8)(c) (2017), the substantive effect of the
amendment precludes it from being applied retroactively to
causes of action that accrued prior to its enactment. See
Marshall v. Walgreen Co., No. 4:18 CV 331 CDP, 2018 WL
3025813 (E.D. Mo. June 18, 2018). See also Woodruff v.
Jefferson City Area YMCA, No. 17-4244-CV-C-WJE, 2018 WL
576857, at *3 (W.D. Mo. Jan. 27, 2018); Billingsley v.
Rich Logistics, LLC, No. 4:17 CV 2834 SNLJ, 2018 WL
1924339, at *2 (E.D. Mo. Apr. 24, 2018); McGuire v. St.
Louis Cty., Mo., No. 4:17 CV 2818 CDP, 2018 WL 705050,
at *2-3 (E.D. Mo. Feb. 5, 2018). As discussed in
Marshall, a claim of employment discrimination under
the MHRA accrues when the alleged discriminatory conduct
occurred, not when the notice of right to sue is issued.
Marshall, 2018 WL 3025813, at *2-3. Accordingly,
individual defendants continue to be liable under the MHRA
for discriminatory conduct alleged to have occurred before
August 28, 2017. Id.
all of the discriminatory conduct alleged in this case
occurred before August 28, 2017, McCulloch's MHRA claims
of employment discrimination against the individual
defendants survive. I will therefore deny their motion to
dismiss. Further, because McCulloch and the individual
defendants are all citizens of Missouri, I will grant
McCulloch's motion to remand since complete diversity is
lacking in this case.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that defendants Terry
Bechel, Stacy Hager, and Jamie Clark's Motion to Dismiss
 is DENIED.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that plaintiff Bryan
McCulloch's Motion to ...