Q: Can I amend the complaint and include the Union, in my discrimination case against employer?
I fried my attorney, when I discovered he failed to file a suit against my former union like we agreed. he filed against my former employer (discrimination) in 08/2013 and kept me in the dark about the union, I'm heading into ADR in 02/2015, can I amend the complaint and include the Union? who discriminated against me right alongside with the employer.
A: Disclaimer: The materials provided below are informational and should not be relied upon as legal advice.
Prior to defendants answering your complaint, you could have filed a First Amended Complaint as a matter of right, without needing a court order. You say your case is going to ADR, so I assume the defendants have already answered your complaint. If so, you will need to bring a motion for leave (i.e., permission) of the court to allow you to file an amended complaint. Before doing so, you should research and see if you have a cause of action against any new defendants you want to name. Be sure to consult your own attorney to protect your legal rights.
A: Theoretically, you can add the union to your complaint. However, in the vast majority of cases, this is neither appropriate nor worth to. Your union was not your employer, so they can't be charged with the same claims. The only claim that can be brought against the Union is for breach of duty of fair representation. The standard for proving that claim is very high - you have to show that the union's failure to represent wasn't merely a business decision, but it was motivated by prejudice or discrimination against you. Because of this very high standard of proof and because very few cases meet this standard, the majority of claims against unions are dismissed for lack of evidence. Before you add that claim, you should consult with an attorney, to make sure that doing this will not simply delay and complicate your case without adding any benefit.
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