Hamden v. Total Car Franchising Corporation, No. 7:2012cv00003 - Document 21 (W.D. Va. 2012)

Court Description: MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge James C. Turk on 5/22/12. (med)
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a . .:o-j:t,>u - n A qe , Te A FuAn tv tix A s I T H E UN I N TED STATE S DI STRI CO U R T CT FO R TH E W EST ER N D I STR I T O F V I G I I C R N A Roanoke Di si vi on MAt 22 2 1 22 JULI C, A D , c- DEV I H A M D EN, N C ase No.7: cv12- 00003 Pl ntf , ai if M EM OM NPUM OPI ON NJ V. T O TAL C AR FM N C H I NG CO R P. SI , d/ a C O LO RS O N PA M D E, b/ By: H on.Jam es C .Turk Se or U nie St e D i t i tJudge ni t d at s s r c D ef endant. Thi m a t r i pr e l be or t Cour o t D e e nt s M oton t D i m i s o St s te s es nty f e he t n he f nda ' i o s s r ay Lii ton a Compe Ar tai ( . 5) ThePli ifopposd t moi ( . 9) tgai nd l birton. DktNo. . antf e he ton DktNo. a t Def ntrpled ( .No.11. The Cour he r orlar nton t moton on nd he enda e i Dkt ) t ad a gume he i M a c 2,201 a t t m o i unde a s m en t alow t pa tes t ptr ue m e a i rh 2, nd ook he ton r dvi e t o l he r i o ls di ton. M e a i w as not s e s ul a t ,t m o i i rpe f r di pos ton. For t f l w i di ton ucc s f nd hus he ton s i o s ii he olo ng r s , t D e e nt s M oton t D im i s o St y Lii a i a Com pel A r ta i i ea ons he f nda ' i o s s r a t g ton nd bir ton s D ENI . ED Bac ound kgr Pli ifDe nHn n(t- mde 'wa afa hie ofDe e ntTot Ca antf vi mde 'la n' s rnc se l ) f nda al r Frnc sngCor Cç a1' sari i Ma 1 Totli afa s i t a omobie a hii p. Tot ' t tng n y 996. a s rnchior n he ut ) l r t a i bus ne s A spa tofa e ng t be a f a hi e H a d s gne a Li ied Fr nc s esor ton i s . r gr ei o r nc s e m en i d m t a hi e Age me t(dr n hieAge me t'a aNo - mp tto a dCo fd n il yAge me t r e n t a c s re n' nd n co ei n n n ie tai r e n F ) i t Cç compeii Agre nf'.Thetr oft Frnc s Agee twas1 ye r The Nontton e me ) em he a hie r men 5 as. Frnc s Agre nti l dadiput r ol i pr e epr di f ( )prvae a hie e me ncude s e es uton oc dur ovi ng or 1 i t ne i i ( me ai and( bi ngabirton.( . 1 1 j 1 .TheFrnchie gotaton, 2) diton, 3) ndi r tai DktNo. - , 2) a s ClFRK . Agr me alo i ude a c nan nott compee, nt s c i e ild ç ght a Dute of ee nt s ncl d ove t o t i he e ton ntte t Ri s nd is Pari Upo Expia i Te m i ton orN on- ne a ,' hi h s a ed: tes n r ton, r na i Re w l' w c t t Pos Ter C om pe ii For2 ye r f l w i t t na i n of t m ttona s olo ng he enni t o t sAgreme net ryounora ofyo pa t rs or hi e nt ihe ny ur rnet) s rhol rs s lenga i o ha a fna alor hae det) hal ge n, r ve ny nci m a ge e i t r t die ty ori r ty e t r a a of i r na m nt n e es , r c l ndiec l ihe s n fce , pr i t ,age ,e pl e,d r c o ,s r hol r f a hi e or opr e or nt m oye i e t r ha e de , r nc s e pa t r i a ot rm o l offxe pantr t r ton busne si rne , n ny he bie i d i eso ai i s n t s a r m e r po ian sats i a a e i w hi h t t ni o y i he t nda d t o lt t i tc l r a n c he e t r s l t ocaed. ( . 1 1 !9) TheNo co tto Agre n pr de amor deal veri oft DktNo. - , . n- mpeiin e me t ovi d e tied son he c na nott c ove nt o ompet Specfc ly,ipr bie co ii ûg urngt tr o t e. iial t ohi td mpetton çdl i he em f he Fr nc s Agr eme 'a pr dedt t a hie e nt' nd ovi ha : l t Fr nc s Agr e e i t r na e be or ise r i dae, f he a hie e m nt s e mi t d f e t xpiaton t ori you as i ortans eryou i e e ti t Fr nc s f s gn r f r nt r s n he a hi e A g e m en , o a pe s orbusnes o ga z ton e e r e t t ny r on i s r ni a i xc pt a cor ng t Se i 7oft Fr nc s Ag e nt t n You c di o cton he a hie r eme , he c na ,f a pe i of2 ye r a t rt r i to t a f ror ove nt or rod a s f e e m na i n, r ns e a s gnm e ,nott e ge asa ow ne ,ope a o ,o i a si nt o nga n r r t r r n ny ma ge i lca iy,n a busne se ge i t s m eor na ra pact i ny i s nga d n he a s m ia t pe ofa i lr y ppea a e t c mol i s wihi t m e r polt n r nc e l og e t n he t o ia s a itca ar a i whi h t Fr nc s A gr e e ' D e i t d t ts i l e n c he a hi e e m nt s s gna e M ar tng Ar ai l aed,ot rt n asa au horz fa hie kei e s oc t he ha n t ied r nc s e ore pl e ofa he Col son Pa a f a hi e. m oye not r or r de r nc s ( t No.12, 1.Net rt Fr nc s Agre ntno t NonDk. - at ) ihe he a hie e me r he compeii Ag e me tton r e nt i ude a s c i c a ni de i d tr s alhough alm ied n be oft nnsa e de d i ncl d e ton ont i ng fne e m , t i t um r e r sne n t r dt l t t Fr nc s A g ee e . he e a s o he a hi e r m nt The Fr nc s A g e m e expie i M a 2011 butHam de con i d w o ki a a a hi e r e nt rd n y , n tnue r ng s fmwhie OnN ove r s e. mber30,2011 Ha n notfe Tot lt thewoul notbec i ng wih , mde i d a ha d ontnui t t f a hi e A fe r e vi a ca lfom Tot he c pl t l c as o r tons on Dec m be 1 he r nc s . t r ec i ng l r al om e e y e ed pe a i e r , Ha de wihe t o n hi own d tr parbusnes bu be or doi s e n t h he m n s d o pe s en e i i s t f e ng o, ve houg be i ve he w asno l le d ongerbot d by t Fr nc s A gr e e ta t N onm he a hi e e m n nd he com pe ii tton Ag ee nt hec a t d To a a i or d t m ofhi i e i . Tot ldia r e wih r me , ont c e t l nd nf me he s ntntons a sged t Ha n' i e r tton t tHn de wa no bo by t Fr hieAgr eme a t Nonmde s ntm ea i ha m n s t und he anc s e nt nd he Com pe ii n A gr e e . Upon l mmi o H a d si e i n t s a thi own bus nes ,Tot l tto e m nt e ng f m en' nt nto o t r s i s a if r dHa e te wo l tkei daej dca a t nt p e e t m fo d igs n o me md n h y u d a mme it u iil ci o rv n hi r m on o. o Ha de t n fl t i t nta ton. m n he ied he ns a c i I . St I apdar ofRe e d viw Unde Fe r lRul ofCi lPr ce e8()2) ac antne d onl c an( s t r de a e vi o dur a( , ompli e y onti $ hor a a pli sae e oft ca m s nd an t tm nt he li howi t tt plad ri en ild t r le . W he e uai ng ha he e e s tte o ei f' ' n val tng ac antunde Fedea Rul ofCi lPr ed e 1 b)6) c t mus û cc ptt ale tons ompli r rl e vi oc ur 2( ( , ours tù e he lgai a i t co pli ta tu a dr w a1 r as bl f cuali e enc si f n he m a n s r e, nd a 1 e ona e a t nf r e n avoroft pl i if' he antf.' Co e v Gi s n, 5 U. 41 4 - 6( 9 7 .Nowi tn igRul 8a ( ) teS p e Co r nly . b o 3 5 S. , 5 4 1 5 ) t t a dn hs e ( )2 ,h u rme u t ha s ciid t tpl a ngswhi h me ey ofe (lbe sa c usons'çaf mul i r ia i s pe fe ha e di c r l f r ta l nd oncl i ,'t or ac ectton oft e e nt ofa c us ofaci 'orE kedas e to de d off t rf cual he l me s a e ton,' d na s ri ns voi urhe a t e nc nt'aenots fce .As r tv.I l 1 S. .1 1 ( nha eme ' r ufiint hcof qba, 29 Ct 937, 949 2009)(ii Bel ctng l Ata i Cor v.Twombl 55 U. 544,555 5 ( lntc p. v, 0 S. - 7 2007:. Thus whieûdeaiedfcua , l i t l at l alega i ' a e notr qui e ç o s vi a m o i t di m i s a c pl i m us c t n s fci nt l tons ' r e r d, s ur ve t ton o s s , om a nt t on ai uf i e f t lm a t r a e e ast ue t sa e a cl i t r le t ti pl us bl on is f c ' 1 ac ua te , cc pt d r , o t t a m o e i f ha s a i e t a e. d. ' 1 1 Anal i 1. ys s Tot ' motont dimisort co labirto r ie t l lis s: 1 whehe t als i o s s o mpe r tain as s wo ega sue ( ) t r he pr s ons r ga di a bir ton i t Fr nchie A gr e e a t N onovi i e r ng r t a i n he a s e m nt nd he com pe ii tton Agr me c ee nt ompelabirton, nd( whehert sCo ts ddimist ca ea t r tai a 2) t hi ur houl s s he s fer 3 c ompe lng a bir ton,i t Cour r e a bir ton i r quied. Hamde r po by a g ng li r ta i f he t uls r ta i s e r n es nds r ui t tt Fr hieAgr eme doe noti udea ag e ntt a bir t t cai a is and ha he anc s e nt s ncl n r eme o r ta e he l ms t s ue t te n i t Fr nc s A gr m e di c rt pr s nti s s t r quie e t a bir e ha ve f he a hi e ee nt d ove he e e s ue , he e r m nt o r tat e r d wih t Fr nc s Ag e m e ti M a 2011.Furher or Ha de a g st tt xpie t he a hie r e n n y t m e, m n r ue ha he pr vii t a bir t i ude i t Fr nc s Agr e e tdoe note e t orgo r t Nono son o r ta e ncl d n he a hie e m n s xtnd o ve n he Co pe ii A gr e e . m tton e m nt The Cour tr taddr s e t i s ofwhe he t pa tesag e d t a bir t t pr e tis e s s he s ue t r he r i r e o r t a e he es nt diput r ga di whe he Ha de ma sar hi o i e s e e r ng t r m n y t t s wn nd pende busne sa t stme o nt i s t hi i r whe he hei bo byt t ye rnon- ompe eclus a deaied i t Fr nc s Agr eme t r s und he wo a c t a e s t l n he a hie e nt andt No compeiin Agr me .Thequesi ofEl hehe apa t hasagee t abirt he ntto ee nt ton swl t r ry r d o r tae a is i amatrofc rc i eprtton:;AJpat c nno ber uie t s tt n sue s te onta t ntr eai g ry a t eq rd o ubmi o a bir ton a di put whi h he hasnota e d s t s bm i.' Le n v. l s & A s oc . I . r ta i ny s e c gr e o o u t'' vi A m s s s nc , 634F. 260, ( hCi. 1 ( i Unie Stewor r- Ameiav. aror& Gul 3d 266 4t r 201 ) quotng td e l ke-of rc W ri s f Na cain Co.363U. 574,582( 960:.Nonehels , ca et Supr Co te ourges vi to , S. 1 t e s be us he eme ur nc a a l at r ga df rt f r lpolc fvo i a bir ton,' os H . t lhy e r o he ede a iy a rng r ta i 'M es Cone M e ' Hos v. he m l p. M ec yConsr Cop .460U. 1 24( ) d nydoubt c er ngt s opeofar ta e rur t. , S. , 1983 ,t a s onc ni he c birbl is ss dber s ve i f vorora bir ton, Le n,634 F. a 266.A st Fourh Cic t s ue houl e ol d n a r tai ' vi ' 3d t he t r ui hass i t r i aS a pr umpton'i fvo ofabirbiiy.I (uoi Peo e Sec Lie ad,hee s : vy es i 'n a r r ta lt d. q tng pls . f he l . v. on ntlLiel . ,8 F. 8 81 ( hCi.1 9) W iht ssa r i ns Co. M ume a f ns Co. 67 2d 09, 2 4t r 98 . t hi tndad n m i t Cour e ua e t l ngua oft di pu e r s uton s ton i t Fr nc s nd, he t val t s he a ge he s t e ol i ec i n he a hi e Agr m e t de er i i i w a i e d t c rt c r ntdi put ,whi h i a di put ee nt o t m ne f t s nt nde o ove he ur e s e c s s e be w e n t f a hi ee H a den,a t f anc s ,Tot l t e he r nc s , m nd he r hi or a . Se ton 1 oft Fr hieAgr e e , pe ii st t e se t tm us betke i t c i 2 he anc s e m nt s cte he hr e tps ha t a n n he e ntofa di put . St p 1 r r ng pr va e neg i ton,s ii s t he ve a c us of ve s e e , ega di i t ota i pec f e i ne r ny a e W po e i lca e f dia e ntma occ wihi t Col son Pa adec muniy, hepa te t nta us or s gr eme y ur t n he or r om t t ris i ve wile e i odie tc nvol d l ntr nt rc ommuniai wihonea he . ( . 1 1, t9) I prvae c ton t not r' DktNo. - a . f i t ' negoitoni uns c sul se 2die st pa te t purueme ai (d.a 1 ) l no tai s uc esf , tp rct he ris o s diton. l , t 0 . f r s uton occ ls se 3 s c fe t pr dur s f rbi i a bir ton,a f l w s e ol i t , t p pe ii s he oce e o nd ng r t a i r s olo : The pa te wile c c r i s l a h hoos o a bir t . The t ar ta or e ne r ta or wo bir t s wils ec at r Thepa te wildee m i t f u f l el t hid. ri s l t r ne he or m or a bir ton. I ,how e r t pa te f i t esa i h a f 'm t r ta i f ve , he ri s a l o t bls ol he u s a r r e ofa bir ton a s tou by t A m e i a A r t a i t nda d ul s r t a i s e t he r c n bir ton As oc ai w ila y.. Thea bir to wilbe bi ng a t s i ton l ppl .. r ta in l ndi nd he de s on oft a bir t sfna . ci i he r t a or i l The f r a oft ar ta i pr es i t s o m t he bir ton oc s s hi : Oneore h diputnts isade nd f ra bir i n t ac s a ubm t ma o r tato o us W ewilas iti t s e ton ofa bir or a s r e . l ss n he elc i r tat s nd e v a c e a i sr t . s as dm nit a or Onc t a bir t r a e a ntd, he wilc r t e he r ta o s r ppoi e t y l ontol he pr ee ngs a al de s onsw ilbe tna a bi ng a oc di nd 1 ci i l i l nd ndi nd ma befldi ac u t fc mp tn j rs ito y ie n o r o o ee tu id ci n. (d.. I) Hn n a gue t tSe ton 1 wa i t nde t be a i erofie diput r s uton mde r s ha c i 2 s n e d o n nt - fc s e e ol i p o e t ea dn t ne de t g v r ds u e bewe ntefa c ie a dfa hs r ( tNo r c dl n o i tn d o o en ip ts t e h r n h s e n rnc io . Dk . . r 9, t3) Tos r t spostonHa nr lesonaLouiinadecson,O' lv. tlCar a . uppo thi ii mde ei sa ii Nea Toa Frnc sncCom .27So.d 31 ( CtAp 2009 ,ha hedt tt abirtonpr sonsdi a hii , 3 7 La. . p. ) t t l ha he r tai ovii d n t o e abtain i an n c mp t b e c o c nr c c s .Toa rj cst i ag me ta d o c mp l r i to n o -o ee r a h f o ta t ae tl ee t h s r u n n r r s t tt Lo s a de i i pl ce ç ea ons ha he ui i na c s on a d t undue e phas son t f c t tD e e ntwoul m i he a t ha f nda d a ss i t s lci ofar tat sa s l a ac ead nitaor'( . 1 a 3) s itn he ee ton bir or nd e' s as mi srt . DktNo. 1, t . ve ' Thea bir ton clus pr de ,a not d a r ta i a e ovi s s e bove t , s ore h diput ts one ac s an ubmisa t de a f r a bir ton t us W e w ila s s i t s e ton ofa bir t sand s r a c s m nd o r t a i o . l s i t n he el c i r t a or e ve s a e ad nitaor' ( . 1 1 a 1 )(mpha i a d) Thercial t t Fr nc s Agre n mi srt . DktNo. - , t 0 e ' ss dde . e t s o he a hie e me t pr det tToa i r fredt a tt a /o t 't oughou t sAgr me .'( . 1ovi ha tl s eer o s twe' nd r us hr t hi ee nt' DktNo. 1 a 1.Thus t drfi oft spr sons sst tTotlwhoi t dei pat i S ' ,t ) ,he a tng hi ovii ugget ha a, s he fned ry n s we' a t ,' sno i e nd t 'wa t nt ndedt bea diput ntunde t spr son.l To a wer adiput ntt y us o s a r hi ovii f t l e s a he woul s d ubmi t i diput t t t her s e o hems l , c ma sltl s ns ll e , ast Loui i na eves whih ke ite e e. nde d he sa c ts i Ches pa s gesc s To a Ca/ or onPa a a ane r ladmi sr t r nota our a d t e s a t a t t l rcol s r de s uta nita o , diputnt i t t s e c empl e by t sag ee nt' O' l 27 So. a 31 s a , n he diput s' ont atd hi r me .' Nei, 3d t 9. Addii ly,ot rpori nsoft diput r s u i s c i notdie ty a i bl t tona l he to he s e e olton e ton, r c l pplca e o t pr e diput s he es nt s e, ugges t s m eou c e Fis,hes ond s n e eoft diput t he a t om . r t t ec e t nc he s e rs uto sci sae ç a e t a debyt spr edu e. ( t No.1 1 a 9)(mpha i e ol in e ton tts ç You gre o bi hi oc r ' Dk . ' - , t e ss a d) Thed a tr c ek 'ahe t d 'i cai t tt drfe,Totldi not dde . r fe s hos ç rt r han t ndi tng ha he a tr a, d you' we' i endt bebound by t pr son. Se O' l 27 So.d a 31 Se ond,helng ge nt o he ovii e Nei, 3 t 9. c t a ua r ga di m e a i s a esû e w ilpr de a ls oft e s e r ng di ton t t i w l ovi i t hr e ugge t d m e a o st de lw ih t se di t r o a t he stain. ( tNo.11 a 1 )( mph ssa d d .Ag i,h sd a t gs g ssToa wa t b i to ' Dk . u ' - , t 0 e a i d e ) an t i rfi ug et tl s o e n s en a a ne r pa t t t diput r t rt n adipu a .Se O' i,27 So. a 31 e s utal ry o he s e, a he ha s t nt e Nel 3d t 9. Fi ly,t s Cour fnds Tot ls a g e t tO ' e pl e tundue e pha i ' on na l hi ti a ' r um nt ha N al ac d d m s s' To a ' r e i s l c i t a bir t sunpe s s ve. t l s ol n e e tng he r ta or r ua i The que ton bef e t s Co ti not si or hi ur s whehe t pr es f s e tng t abir t si f i, rt rwhe he t pa te a e t t r he oc s or elc i he r ta or s ar but ahe t r he ris gr ed o a bir t t di put a al. Conc r a r ta e he s e t l e ns boutt f ine s o t s l to pr es a e s co r he a r s f he e ec i n oc s r e nda y a i m a e i t t s Co ts i r Thi Cour ' r a oni whi h di c s t f c t t nd m t ral o hi ur ' nquiy. s ts e s ng, c s us es he a t ha 'Deenda ' agum e t ti i bou byt dipu er s ui s ton byvit ofhol ng is l ou a ame ber f nts r nt ha t s nd he s t e olton eci rue di tef t s m oft Col son Pa a comm uniy fist addr st s c i ss Gcus oft wor iwe'a Kus'a t i he or r de t al o es he e ton' peci e he ds t ' nd < ' nd hus s unpe s i r uasve. 6 Tot li i ve i t s l ton pr e sf a bir t r ,i no aco m e on t f ine soft a s nvol d n he eec i oc s or r ta o s s t m nt he ar s he pr es ,bu r t ra s a e e aboutt m e ni o t pr vi i is f a whe he t oc s t a he t t m nt he a ng f he o s on t el- nd t r he pr s on w o d ha be n dr t d i t s m e m mm e ha i be n i t nd t co diput s ovi i ul ve e afe n he a r d t e n e ed o ver s e be we t f a hi ora f anc s e. H a t pr s on be n i e t en he r nc s nd r hi e d he ovi i e nt nded t c r diput s o ove s e be we t f a hi ora f a hi e t s Co tfndst ti woul ha bee dr f e t en he r nc s nd r nc s e, hi ur i ha t d ve n a t d dif r ty. 2 fe en l I . Concl on V usi N ot ihs a ng t û avy pr s pto 'i f r of a bir ton, t s Cou tc nnot s w t t ndi he t he e um i n' n avo r ta i hi r a ay t t ba e on t l nguage of t d s e r s uto s c i t pa te a ee t a bir t a ha s d he a he i put e ol i n e ton, he ri s gr d o r t a e dipu e bet e t fanc s a f a hie s s t we n he r hior nd r nc s e, uch as t c r nt diput Ac or ngl he ure s e. c di y, Def nda ' M o i n t D i m i s or St y Lii ton a Com pel A r t a i i D EN I e nts t o o s s a tga i nd bir ton s ED. A n a op i t or rs l i s t sda ppr r a e de ha l s ue hi y. ENTER:Thi 7.. s 7 - a ofMay,201 y 2 , ' z) pg, ' Se n' U nied St t s Di t i tJ e t a e s rc ud 2Dee tas a gue t tt cour i TotlCa Fr nchii Co n. v An esn,1 9 W L 1 3 9 ( D. C. fndan lo r s ha he tn a r a sng r . d ro 9 9 9 75 9 M. N. Au , 6 1 9 ) edta teabtainca s a is eheewa v l a de oc a e Dee d n, o v r g 2 9 9 h l h th rirto lu e tsu r s ai n nfre bl. fn a th we e, d micha a trzest hol ng i Ande s l Ande s t c tconsderd S he adipu er s uton pr es s r ce i he di n r on. n r on he our i e t whet r s t e ol i oc s cond e byt pate wihi aJ hova sW i esesCongr gai c tt esç ndi abir ton'w ihi t uctd he ris t n e h' m s e ton onsiut bi ng r tai t n he m e ng oft pa te 'fanc s a e m en . 1 W L 193 99,a 1 Theco thel Tot f ldt m e tis ani he ris r hie gr e t' 999 ' 75 t . ur d al aie o e t b r e o smmayj d me ta dta teewa ads tdmaeila t st wh te teJho a ' Wi e ss u d n n u r u g n n h t h r s ipue tra fc a o eh r h e v hs t se n Cong e tonpr ed ewasi ende t bebi n abirton.l ex ai ngt na u eoft diputd m aei r gai oc ur nt d o ndig r ta i n pl ni he t r he s e tral f t t cou tnot d t ta l as one oft pa te m a ha bele t J hova sW ines e Congr to ac , he r e ha t e t he ri s y ve i ved he e h' t s s ega i n pr dur wast t a c r t . Thus t c ti Ande s t no poston on t s ope oft a bir ton oce e t r - ontac ual' ex ' , he our n r on ook ii he c he r t a i a e m en orw hehe t pa tes diput wass tbl f a bir ton u rt s ton. gr e t t r he ri ' s e uia e or r tai nde he eci