United States District Court, M.D. Georgia, Macon Division
FADY S. WANNA, Plaintiff,
HEALTH SERVICES OF CENTRAL GEORGIA, INC et al., Defendants.
ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO
E. SELF, III, JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
Health Services of Central Georgia, Inc.
(“HSCG”), employed Plaintiff from July 1, 2013,
to September 30, 2015. In October 2016, HSCG announced that
its employees would no longer be able to work for other
facilities, a decision which Plaintiff claims would have
eliminated 40% of his income. Based on this substantial
income reduction, Plaintiff informed HSCG that he wished to
terminate his employment for cause. Subsequently, Plaintiff
filed suit in the Bibb County Superior Court, seeking relief
for HGSC's alleged breach of Plaintiff's 2013
Employment Agreement and a declaration that he is not bound
by the non-compete clause in the employment agreement. [Doc.
2, 2017, Plaintiff filed his First Amended Complaint [Doc.
1-3] in which he clarified the relief sought for his breach
of contract claim. The amendment clarifies as follows:
explained the February 20, 2017 letter attached as Exhibit 3,
Navicent is in breach of its contractual obligation to pay
the following unpaid compensation to Dr. Wanna under the 2013
Employment Agreement [Doc. 26-2]:
1. “Severance Payments pursuant to Section
4(b)(1)” of [Doc. 26-2];
2. “pursuant to Section 3(a) [of Doc. 26-2] for the
Management Incentive Plan ("MIP”) bonus earned in
FY 2015 and unpaid”;
3. “pursuant to Section 3(b) [of Doc. 26-2] for the
Senior Executive Retirement Plan (“SERP”) earned
in FY 2015 and unpaid”;
4. “interest on the MIP and SERP” under [Doc.
5. “legal fees in the amount of approximately $26, 000
for which he seeks to be compensated with interest”
“pursuant to Section 3(f) of the CMO Agreement”
April 26, 2018, Plaintiff filed his fourth amended complaint
which stated, “Dr. Wanna's claim for his SERP
benefits (provided for in Section 3(b) of his 2013 Employment
Agreement) is made pursuant to [the Employee Retirement
Income Security Act of 1974, 29 U.S.C. § 1001 et seq.
(“ERISA”)] and the Defendants are in breach of
their obligations under ERISA.” [Doc. 1-10].
Subsequently, on May 25, 2018, Defendants, removed this case
to federal court. [Doc. 1].
now moves to remand this case on the basis that Defendants
failed to timely remove. [Doc. 3]. Plaintiff contends that
his breach of contract claim is completely preempted by ERISA
and that Defendants knew or should have known that this case
contained ERISA claims prior to the express inclusion of an
ERISA count in his Fourth Amended Complaint. Defendants, on
the other hand, argue that ERISA did not preempt this claim
until Plaintiff specifically enumerated an ERISA cause ...