COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
MASSACHUSETTS COMMISSION AGAINST DISCRIMINATION
WILLIAM SILVERSTEIN, Complainant,
MATTEL, INC., et al, Respondents.
|MCAD CASE NO. 99-BEM-2634|
RESPONDENTS' MOTION FOR SANCTIONS
After numerous frivolous motions to default, a motion to strike and a motion for sanctions, the Complainant, William Silverstein ("Silverstein") without permission has attempted to file a Superior Court action pursuant to G.L.c. 15lB §9 based on the same facts alleged here. Due to Silverstein's continuing frivolous actions, Respondents respectfully request that the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (the "Commission") award the Respondents their costs and attorneys' fees incurred in responding to these multiple motions, as permitted by 804 CMR 1.09(d). In support hereof, Respondents state:
- Silverstein filed this action on September 27, 1999. At the suggestion of the Investigator, the Respondents filed a Request for a More Definite Statement ("the Request").
- The Respondents however were unable to distinguish between the instant Complaint and Silverstein's 1997 Complaint filed with the Commission. The Request sought to have Silverstein clarify the exact nature of his allegations in this action, including the basis for Silverstein's assertion that this action does not arise from the same facts as his 1997 discrimination claim. At the Investigative Conference, the Commission instructed Silverstein to submit a more definite statement.
- Despite the fact that the Commission allowed the Request, Silverstein filed a series of motions charging that the Request was "frivolous and abusive":
- Cross-Motion to Default the Respondents, dated May 19, 2000 (filed in connection with Opposition to Respondents' Request for More Definite Statement) ("Motion to Default I");
- Motion for to Default Respondents [sic.], undated (received in June 2000) ("Motion to Default II") at page 2("I respectfully implore the Commission [sic.] enforce their own regulations");
- Motion for Sanctions Against Respondents' Attorney in Accordance with 804 C.M.R. 1.09(d), undated (received in June 2000) ("Motion for Sanctions I") at page 2 ("I respectfully implore the Commission [sic.] enforce their own regulations");
- Motion to Default Defendant The Learning Company, Inc., dated June 1, 2000 ("Motion to Default III") at page 1 ("I respectfully implore the Commission [sic.] enforce their own regulations"); and
- Motion to Strike Respondents' Position Statement and Opposition to Respondents' Opposition to Motion to Default Respondents dated July 7, 2000 (corrected copy dated July 10, 2000) ("Motion to Strike") at page 1 ("I again request that the respondents are defaulted for their flagrant violation of the MCAD rules").
The Respondents incurred significant costs and legal fees responding to these frivolous and harassing motions.
- Moreover, despite his pleas that the Commission enforce its own rules, Silverstein himself ignored the Commission's regulations in filing a complaint under G.L.c. 15lB § 9. Specifically, the Commission's regulations require a complainant to obtain the Commission's permission prior to the initiation of a civil action under G.L.c. 15lB §9:
After a complaint has been pending before the Commission for 90 days Complainant may file, with the Commissioner having charge of the matter, notice of the Complainant's intent to file a complaint pursuant to G.L. 15lB §9, along with a request that the Commission not initiate a complaint . . . upon the same subject matter, against Respondent. The Commission retains discretion to grant or deny such a request.
804 CMR 1.15(2) (b). Silverstein did no such thing. Silverstein filed William Silverstein v. Microsystems Software, Inc., The Learninq Company, Inc., and Mattel, Inc., (Middlesex Superior Court, Civil Action No. 00-3893) on August 22, 2000 and filed an Amended Complaint on September 20, 2000 - all without the Commission's permission.
WHEREFORE, the Respondents respectfully requests that the Commission award the Respondents their costs and attorneys' fees associated with their response to Silverstein's Complaint and groundless motions.
Respondents, Mattel, Inc., Microsystems Software, Inc., and The Learning Company
By their attorneys,
Laura N. Kling
Irwin B. Schwartz BBO#548763
Laura N. Kling BBO#638313
SCHWARTZ and NYSTROM, LLC
419 Boylston Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116
(617) 421-1810 (fax)
Dated: November 6, 2000