United States District Court, D. Maryland
JAMES V. KROUSE Plaintiff,
JOHNS HOPKINS HEALTHCARE LLC, et al. Defendants.
MEMORANDUM & ORDER
RICHARD D. BENNETT UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
James V. Krouse ("Krouse"), filed this lawsuit on
June 20, 2018 against his former employer, Johns Hopkins
HealthCare LLC ("JH HealthCare") and The Johns
Hopkins Health System Corporation ("JH Health
System") (collectively, "Defendants") for
alleged violations of the Family Medical Leave Act
("FMLA), 29 U.S.C § 2601 et seq. (Compl.,
ECF No. 1.) On August 29, 2018, before Defendants had filed
their Answer, Krouse filed an Amended Complaint (ECF No. 18).
On August 30, 2018, the parties filed a Joint Status Report
(ECF No. 22) in which Krouse's counsel stated an
intention to file a Motion for Leave to File a Second Amended
Complaint once Krouse received a Right to Sue from the United
States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
("EEOC"). In anticipation of the motion, this Court
ordered this case STAYED pending the amendment and
Defendants' timely response. (ECF No. 24.)
anticipated, after receiving the right to sue from the EEOC
on October 2, 2018, Krouse filed a Motion for Leave to File
Second Amended Complaint (ECF No. 26) on October 9, 2018,
seeking to add claims under the Americans with Disabilities
Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.
("ADA"), and the Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C.
§ 791 et seq. Defendants oppose Krouse's
motion (ECF No. 28), so Krouse's pleading may be amended
only with this Court's leave. See Fed. R. Civ.
P, 15(a)(2). For the reasons that follow, this Court shall
GRANT the Motion for Leave to File Second Amended Complaint
(ECF No. 26).
Federal Rules provide that a "court should freely give
leave when justice so requires." Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(2).
The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has
"interpreted Rule 15(a) to provide that 'leave to
amend a pleading should be denied only when the amendment
would be prejudicial to the opposing party, there has been
bad faith on the party of the moving party, or the amendment
would have been futile." Laber p. Harvey, 438
F.3d 404, 426 (4th Cir. 2006 (quoting Johnson p. Oroweat
Foods Co., 785 F.3d 503, 509 (4th Cir. 1986)). In this
case, Defendants assert that permitting Krouse to amend his
First Amended Complaint would be futile because his ADA
claims are time-barred. (ECF No. 28 at 7.) Defendants argue
that Krouse did not timely file a charge with the EEOC, which
is a condition precedent to an ADA claim. (Id.
citing 42 U.S.C. § 12117(a)).
general rule with regard to exhaustion under ADA Title I,
requires the aggrieved person to file a charge with the EEOC
within 180 days of the alleged discrimination, but in a
"deferral" jurisdiction, the period is 300 days.
See 42 U.S.C. § 200e-5(e)(1); Edelman v.
lynchburg Coll., 300 F.3d 400, 404 & n.3 (4th Cir.
2002). A deferral jurisdiction is a state, such as Maryland,
that has a law prohibiting employment discrimination on the
same bases covered by the federal statutes and authorizing a
state or local agency to grant or seek relief from such
discrimination. See 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(c),
(d); see, e.g., Edelman, 300 F.3d at 404 & n.3;
Prelich v. Med. Res., Inc., 813 F.Supp.2d 654,
661-62 (D. Md. 2011).
agency also enjoys a worksharing agreement with the EEOC,
"by which a claim filed before one commission is
effectively filed before both." Valderrama v.
Honeywell Tech. Solutions, Inc., 473 F.Supp.2d 658, 662
n. 4 (D. Md. 2007); see E.E.O.C v. Techalloy Maryland,
Inc., 894 F.2d 676, 677-78 (4th Cir. 1990). Importantly,
under the worksharing agreement, "to facilitate early
resolution of charges, [the Maryland agency] gave primary
responsibility to EEOC to process all charges filed between
180 and 300 days of the alleged discrimination and waived its
exclusive rights to specific periods of initial processing
which have been granted to [the Maryland agency] by Title
VII." Techalloy, 894 F.2d at 678 (citing
E.E.O.C v. Commercial Office Prods. Co., 486 U.S.
107 (1988)). See also Bennett v. St. Mary's Cty.
Sheriffs Dept., 2000 WL 1144600, at *1 (4th Cir. 2000).
Therefore, if Krouse's charge was filed within 300 days
of the alleged discrimination with both the Maryland agency
and the EEOC, it is timely filed.
dated the charge on April 2, 2018, and it was stamped
received by the EEOC on April 3, 2018. (ECF No. 28-1.) A
charge is considered filed under the ADA and Title VII when
the EEOC receives it, not when the claimant mails it. See
DeLeon v. Gen. Insulation, Inc., 575 Fed.Appx. 292, 293
(5th Cir. 2014) (citing Taylor v. Gen. Telephone Co. of
the Southwest, 759 F.2d 437, 442 (5th Cir. 1985)). Three
hundred days prior to April 3, 2018 is June 7, 2017.
was terminated effective June 6, 2017. (Am. Compl., ECF No.
18 at ¶¶ 11, 109.) Defendants informed Krouse by
letter, mailed on June 7, 2017. (Id.; see also
Answer, ECF No. 25 at ¶ 11.) The limitations period
begins when Krouse received notice of the termination.
See Hospodorv. Burlington Indus., Inc., 2000 WL
203933, at *1 (4th Cir. 2000) (citing Chardon v.
Fernande, 454 ASA U.S. 6, 8 (1981) and
Delaware State College v. Ricks, 449 U.S. 250, 258
(1980)). Therefore, the charge was timely filed even if
Krouse received the letter on the day it was mailed. Further,
the letter is rebuttably presumed to have reached Krouse on
June 10, 2017, under Fed.R.Civ.P. 6(d),  leaving no doubt
that the charge was timely filed.
the circumstances of this case, there is no prejudice to
Defendants, Krouse has acted expeditiously, and there is good
cause to allow the filing of the Second Amended Complaint
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, this 28th day of February
2019, that the Plaintiffs Motion for Leave to File Second
Amended Complaint (ECF No. 26) is GRANTED.
 The stay was subsequently lifted on
December 11, 2018 based on the Joint Scheduling Order (ECF
No. 31) issued on November 13, 2018 by this Court. (ECF No.
34, Magistrate J. Gallagher.)
 ADA Tide I adopts the administrative
exhaustion requirement found in Title VII of the Civil Rights
Act of 1964 ("Title VII"), codified, as amended, at
42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e-5 et seq. This requires
an employee to file an administrative charge of
discrimination before proceeding to federal court.
See 42 U.S.C. § 12117(a); see also Sjdnorv.
Fairfax Cty., Va., 681 F.3d 591, 593 (4th Cir.
 Maryland is a deferral state under
Title VII; the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights, formerly
known as the Maryland Commission on Human Relations, is die
applicable state enforcement agency. 29 C.F.R. § 1601.74
(listing qualifying state enforcement agencies);
Prelich, 813 F.Supp.2d at 661; see also ...