Arbitration award addressing a related but different issue does not revive an otherwise untimely cause of action
Stembridge v New York City Dept. of Education, 2011 NY Slip Op 07519, Appellate Division, First Department
Supreme Court dismissed Everett Stembridge’s petition alleging unlawful discrimination and wrongful termination as untimely, finding that Stembridge’s cause of action had accrued on August 15, 2006, when he was terminated from an Aspiring Principals program as he had not commenced this action until August 2009.
Stembridge had argued that as a result of his prevailing in an arbitration held in 2009, which found that the New York City Department of Education could not recoup monies it had inadvertently paid to him following his termination from the program in August 2006.
The Appellate Division characterized this argument as “misplaced” as the 2009 arbitration did not create a new accrual date for the action alleging unlawful discrimination and, or, unlawful termination.
The court explained that the 2009 grievance “… did not deal with issues of either termination from the program or defendant's alleged discrimination, but only with whether there was a contractual basis for defendant to recoup the alleged overpayment.”
Accordingly, Stembridge could not rely on the 2009 arbitration determination for the purposes of claiming the present action, initiated in 2009, challenging his termination from to Aspiring Principals program in 2006 was timely filed nor that his ability to do so was revived by the Department’s seeking to recoup the monies it claimed that it had paid to him in error.