GERARD D. GRANDOIT
MASSACHUSETTS COMMISSION AGAINST DISCRIMINATION & others (and three consolidated cases).GERARD D. GRANDOIT
BOSTON HOUSING AUTHORITY & another.
Heard: May 14, 2019.
actions commenced in the Superior Court Department on
September 22, 2017.
to dismiss were considered by Robert L. Ullman and Helene
Kazanjian, JJ. Civil action commenced in the Superior Court
Department on October 3, 2017.
motion to dismiss was heard by Linda E. Giles, J.
D. Grandoit, pro se. Simone R. Liebman for Massachusetts
Commission Against Discrimination.
Gabriel S. Gladstone for Operation A.B.L.E. & another.
Kimberly A. Parr, Assistant Attorney General, for Executive
Office of Health and Human Services & others, was present
but did not argue.
Michael J. Louis, for Boston Housing Authority, was present
but did not argue.
Present: Agnes, Shin, & Wendlandt, JJ.
plaintiff filed five complaints with the Massachusetts
Commission Against Discrimination (commission or MCAD),
alleging discrimination in housing and various discriminatory
acts relating to his efforts to obtain job-training services.
All of the complaints were dismissed after MCAD investigating
commissioners conducted preliminary hearings and found a lack
of probable cause to support the allegations. The question we
address in these appeals is whether the Superior Court had
jurisdiction under the Administrative Procedure Act, G. L. c.
30A, or the certiorari statute, G. L. c. 249, § 4, to
review the investigating commissioners' lack of probable
cause determinations. We conclude that the court had no
jurisdiction and thus affirm the judgments of dismissal.
and regulatory framework.
are two largely independent avenues for redress of violations
of the antidiscrimination laws of the Commonwealth, one
through the MCAD (G. L. c. 151B, §§ 5-6) and the
other in the courts (G. L. c. 151B, § 9)."
Christo v. Edward G. Boyle Ins. Agency, Inc., 402
Mass. 815, 817 (1988). For claims of discrimination relating
to housing, complainants may elect at the outset to commence
a civil action in court within one year of the allegedly
discriminatory act, or file a complaint with the commission
within 300 days. See G. L. c. 151B, §§ 5,
9. For all other claims, complainants
must first file a complaint with the commission within 300
days. See G. L. c. 151B, § 5.
complaint is filed, the commission has exclusive jurisdiction
over it for a period of ninety days. See G. L. c. 151B,
§ 9; Depianti v. Jan-Pro Franchising Int'l,
Inc., 465 Mass. 607, 613 (2013). At the expiration of
the ninety days, "or sooner if a commissioner assents in
writing," the complainant may, "not later than
three years after the alleged unlawful practice occurred,
bring a civil action for damages or injunctive relief or
both." G. L. c. 151B, § 9. The civil action and the
commission proceeding may not occur simultaneously. Thus, if
a complainant brings a civil action, the commission must
dismiss any pending complaint, and ...