United States District Court, D. Utah
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
A. Kimball United States District Judge
matter is before the court on Plaintiff Nagendra Singh's
Motion to Set Aside Judgment Under Rule 60(b)(3) and (b)(6).
The parties have fully briefed the motion, and the court
concludes that oral argument would not significantly aid in
its determination of the motion. Therefore, based on the
memoranda submitted by the parties and the law and facts
relevant to the motion, the Court issues the following
Memorandum Decision and Order.
October 2018, Nagendra Singh (“Singh”) filed suit
against DISH Network, LLC, Echosphere, LLC, and Sling T.V.
LLC (collectively, “DISH”), asserting various
claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 based
on his prior employment with DISH. In response to Singh's
Complaint, DISH filed a Motion to Dismiss and Compel
Arbitration, claiming that, as a part of Singh's
employment, he had signed an arbitration agreement which
required that any and all claims related to his employment
with DISH be resolved by arbitration. On July 11, 2019, the
court granted DISH's motion. The court determined that
DISH had produced sufficient evidence of a valid arbitration
agreement between DISH and Singh. Accordingly, the court
dismissed Singh's complaint with prejudice.
now requests that the court set aside the judgment dismissing
his complaint pursuant to rules 60(b)(3) and 60(b)(6) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b) provides that a “court
may relieve a party . . . from a final judgment . . . for . .
. (3) fraud . . ., misrepresentation, or misconduct by an
opposing party; . . . or (6) any other reason that justifies
relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 60(b)(3), (6). Importantly,
“Rule 60(b) relief ‘is extraordinary and may only
be granted in exceptional circumstances.'”
Zurich N. Am. v. Matrix Serv., Inc., 426 F.3d 1281,
1289 (10th Cir. 2005) (quoting Servants of Paraclete v.
Does, 204 F.3d 1005, 1009 (10th Cir. 2000)). As such,
“[p]arties seeking relief under Rule 60(b) have a
high hurdle to overcome.” Id. (quoting
Cummings v. General Motors Corp., 365 F.3d 944, 955
(10th Cir. 2004)).
order to obtain relief under Rule 60(b)(3), the moving party
must “clearly substantiate” their claim by
providing “‘clear and convincing proof' of
fraud, misrepresentation, or misconduct.” Id.
1290 (quoting Cummings, 365 F.3d at 955). To make
such a showing, the moving party must demonstrate that the
non-moving party “acted with ‘an intent to
deceive or defraud the court,' by means of a
‘deliberately planned and carefully executed
scheme.'” Yapp v. Excel Corp., 186 F.3d
1222, 1231 (10th Cir. 1999) (quoting Robinson v. Audi
Aktiengesellschaft, 56 F.3d 1259, 1267 (10th Cir.
1995)). Significantly, “[s]ubsection (b)(3) ‘is
aimed at judgments which were unfairly obtained, not at those
which are factually incorrect.'” Zurich,
426 F.3d at 1290 (quoting Rozier v. Ford Motor Co.,
573 F.2d 1332, 1339 (5th Cir. 1978)).
the relatively high bar required for a moving party to obtain
relief under Rule 60(b)(3), “relief is even more
difficult to attain” under Rule 60(b)(6).
Yapp, 186 F.3d at 1232. Relief under Rule 60(b)(6)
is “appropriate only ‘when it offends justice to
deny such relief.'” Id. (quoting
Cashner v. Freedom Stores, Inc., 98 F.3d 572, 580
(10th Cir. 1996)); see also Kile v. United States,
915 F.3d 682, 687 (10th Cir. 2019), as corrected
(Feb. 15, 2019) (“[A] district court may grant a Rule
60(b)(6) motion ‘only in extraordinary circumstances
and only when necessary to accomplish justice.'”
(quoting Cashner, 98 F.3d at 579)).
case, Singh contends that although DISH moved to dismiss his
complaint and compel arbitration, it has failed to actually
initiate arbitration. Accordingly, Singh avers that DISH
misrepresented its intentions to have this case heard by an
arbitrator, and he now asks that the court issue an order
requiring DISH to initiate arbitration.
DISH contends that it has no obligation to initiate
arbitration, but that Singh, as the aggrieved party, is
required to initiate arbitration proceedings. Under the
Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), after a court
determines that a party has refused to arbitrate in
accordance with a written arbitration agreement, “the
court shall make an order summarily directing the parties to
proceed with the arbitration in accordance with the terms
thereof.” 9 U.S.C. § 4. DISH claims that this is
precisely what the court did when it issued its Memorandum
Decision and Order granting DISH's Motion to Dismiss and
Compel Arbitration-i.e., ordered Singh to submit his
claims to arbitration. See Mem. Decision and Order,
ECF No. 26. Moreover, in support of denying Singh's
motion, DISH cites the relevant portion of the arbitration
agreement, which provides:
A Party who wishes to arbitrate a Claim must prepare a
written demand for arbitration (“Request for
Arbitration”) that identifies the claims asserted, the
factual basis for each claim, and the relief and/or remedy
sought. That Party must file the Request for Arbitration -
along with a copy of this Agreement and the applicable filing
fee - with the AAA by (i) delivering them by hand to any
office of the AAA; (ii) mailing them by certified U.S. mail,
Federal Express or United Parcel Service to American
Arbitration Association, Case Filing Services, 1101 Laurel
Oak Road, Suite 100, Voorhees, N.J. 08043; or (iii) using the
AAA WebFile feature at the AAA's website: www.adr.org.
The Request for Arbitration must be submitted to the AAA
before the expiration of the applicable statute of
limitations and the parties agree that the date the Request
for Arbitration is received by AAA shall constitute
submission for all statute of limitation purposes . . . .
Agreement at ¶ 2. The arbitration agreement further
specifies that arbitration will be conducted “pursuant
to the AAA's Employment Arbitration Rules and Procedures,
” id. at ¶ 4, and those rules provide
that the “initiating party” or the
“Claimant” is to “[f]ile a written notice .
. . of its intention to arbitrate, ” see AAA
Employment Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures
4(b)(i)(1). Under these provisions, DISH contends that Singh
is the party that must initiate arbitration, not DISH.
light of the above arguments, the court is unpersuaded to set
aside the judgment dismissing Singh's case. First, when
DISH moved to dismiss Singh's Complaint and compel
arbitration, it specifically asked the court to “order
Singh to arbitrate his claims” and “given that
all of Singh's clams are subject to arbitration . . .
dismiss Singh's Complaint.” Mot. to Dismiss and
Compel Arbitration at 7-8, ECF No. 8. Accordingly, when the
court granted DISH's motion, not only did it dismiss
Singh's Complaint, but it also served as an order
directing Singh to submit his claims to arbitration.
Singh's present motion makes clear that he misinterpreted
the relief sought ...