Feliciano-Munoz v. Rebarber-Ocasio, No. 18-2075 (1st Cir. 2020)Annotate this Case
The First Circuit vacated the decision of the district court dismissing Plaintiff's breach of contract claim, holding that the court erred in concluding that Plaintiff did not assert a breach of contract claim and abused its discretion when it employed the Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) standard in dismissing the breach of contract claim instead of the summary judgment standard.
Plaintiff filed a breach of contract action and asserted a secondary theory of liability related to deceit or "dolo." Defendant moved for summary judgment. The district court granted summary judgment for Defendant but dismissed the breach of contract claim under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim to relief that was "plausible on its fact." Applying the test for deceit in the formation of the contract, the court found that Plaintiff was not entitled to relief. The First Circuit vacated the judgment in part, holding that the district court (1) erred in concluding that Plaintiff did not assert a breach of contract claim and abused its discretion when it evaluated Defendant's motion for summary judgment with respect to the claim as if were a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss; and (2) did not err in granting summary judgment as to Plaintiff's fallback theory of dolo.