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Wilson v. Calamar Management Group, LLC

United States District Court, D. New Hampshire

September 19, 2019

Vicki Wilson
v.
Calamar Management Group, LLC

          ORDER

          Joseph A. DiClerico, Jr. United States District Judge

         Vicki Wilson brought suit in state court against her former employer, Calamar Management Group, LLC, alleging claims under federal and state law that she was not paid for overtime and commissions she earned and that she was terminated because of her age and because she requested her commissions. Calamar removed the case to this court and moves for summary judgment on Wilson’s age discrimination claim under New Hampshire Revised Statutes Annotated (“NH RSA”) chapter 354-A. Wilson objects.

         Standard of Review

         Summary judgment is appropriate when “there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); see also Thomas v. Harrington, 909 F.3d 483, 490 (1st Cir. 2019). For purposes of summary judgment, the court considers the facts in the light most favorable to the plaintiff and draws all reasonable inferences in her favor. Roy v. Correct Care Solutions, LLC, 914 F.3d 52, 57 (1st Cir. 2019). “An issue is genuine if it can be resolved in favor of either party, and a fact is material if it has the potential of affecting the outcome of the case.” Leite v. Bergeron, 911 F.3d 47, 52 (1st Cir. 2018) (internal quotation marks omitted). “A genuine issue of material fact only exists if a reasonable factfinder, examining the evidence and drawing all reasonable inferences helpful to the party resisting summary judgment, could resolve the dispute in that party’s favor.” Town of Westport v. Monsanto Co., 877 F.3d 58, 64-65 (1st Cir. 2017) (internal quotation marks omitted); Flood v. Bank of Am. Corp., 780 F.3d 1, 7 (1st Cir. 2015).

         Background

         Calamar provided a factual statement in support of its motion for summary judgment, and Wilson provided a factual statement in support of her objection. The following summary is taken from those statements. The facts are undisputed unless otherwise noted.

         Calamar Management Group, LLC hired Vicki Wilson in August of 2015 as a community manager in the property management department of the company to work in Londonderry, New Hampshire. Wilson was fifty-nine years old when she was hired. Calamar represents that of its fourteen community managers, eleven are over forty years old and three are over sixty years old.

         Wilson was paid by salary, which was based on experience and the cost of living in the job location. Because of the increase based on location, Londonderry was one of the highest salaries for property managers. Marc Guizzo, who became Wilson’s supervisor, told her that she was highly paid.

         During her employment with Calamar, Wilson worked overtime, and her overtime hours were approved by management. For some of the time she had an administrative assistant, who also worked forty hours each week. In November of 2016, after the Department of Labor changed the overtime rules for salaried employees, Wilson was changed to an hourly pay base. Calamar also ended the administrative assistant’s position.

         In February of 2017, Wilson’s manager began to criticize her for failing to complete her work within forty hours. Despite the criticism, Wilson continued to submit time sheets for work in excess of forty hours. Her manager continued to approve her hours.

         Wilson was terminated in April of 2017, and her overtime hours were identified as a reason for her termination. After her termination, two other property managers filled in her position while maintaining their own jobs. Wilson’s position was then filled with a person who was under forty years old.

         Discussion

         Calamar moves for summary judgment on Wilson’s age discrimination claim under N.H. RSA 354-A:7, Count I. The statute provides as follows:

It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice: I. For an employer, because of the age, sex, gender identity, race, color, marital status, physical or mental disability, religious creed, or national origin of any individual, to refuse to hire or employ or to bar or to discharge from employment such individual or to discriminate against such individual in compensation or in terms, conditions or privileges of employment, unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification. In addition, no ...

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