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Lan Thi Tran Nguyen v. Collins

April 26, 2013

LAN THI TRAN NGUYEN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
COLLINS, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Miranda M. Duunited States District Judge

ORDER

Plaintiff is a prisoner in federal custody. Plaintiff has filed an application to proceed in forma pauperis and a pro se complaint concerning her prior incarceration at the Nevada Southern Detention Center in Pahrump, Nevada.

I. APPLICATION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS

Plaintiff has filed an application to proceed in forma pauperis. (Dkt. no. 1).

However, on February 22, 2013, plaintiff paid the Clerk of Court the full filing fee of $350.00 for this action. (Dkt. no. 5). As such, plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis is denied as moot.

II. MOTIONS FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL

Plaintiff has filed two motions for the appointment of counsel. (Dkt. nos. 2 & 4).

A litigant in a civil rights action does not have a Sixth Amendment right to appointed counsel. Storseth v. Spellman, 654 F.2d 1349, 13253 (9th Cir. 1981). In very limited circumstances, federal courts are empowered to request an attorney to represent an indigent civil litigant. The circumstances in which a court will make such a request, however, are exceedingly rare, and the court will make the request under only extraordinary circumstances. United States v. 30.64 Acres of Land, 795 F.2d 796, 799-800 (9th Cir. 1986); Wilborn v. Escalderon, 789 F.2d 1328, 1331 (9th Cir. 1986). A finding of such exceptional circumstances requires that the court evaluate both the likelihood of success on the merits and the plaintiff's ability to articulate his claims in pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved. In the instant case, the Court does not find exceptional circumstances that warrant the appointment of counsel. Plaintiff's motions for the appointment of counsel are denied.

III. SCREENING STANDARD

Notwithstanding any filing fee that has been paid, the complaint is subject to sua

sponte dismissal by the Court to the extent it contains claims that are "frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant immune from such relief." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). Dismissal of a complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted is provided for in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), and the Court applies the same standard under § 1915 when reviewing the adequacy of a complaint or an amended complaint. When a court dismisses a complaint under § 1915(e), the plaintiff should be given leave to amend the complaint with directions as to curing its deficiencies, unless it is clear from the face of the complaint that the deficiencies could not be cured by amendment. See Cato v. United States, 70 F.3d. 1103, 1106 (9th Cir. 1995).

Review under Rule 12(b)(6) is essentially a ruling on a question of law. See Chappel v. Laboratory Corp. of America, 232 F.3d 719, 723 (9th Cir. 2000). Dismissal for failure to state a claim is proper only if it is clear that the plaintiff cannot prove any set of facts in support of the claim that would entitle him or her to relief. See Morley v. Walker, 175 F.3d 756, 759 (9th Cir. 1999). In making this determination, the court takes as true all allegations of material fact stated in the complaint, and the court construes them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. See Warshaw v. Xoma Corp., 74 F.3d 955, 957 (9th Cir. 1996). Allegations of a pro se complainant are held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers. See Hughes v. Rowe, 449 U.S. 5, 9 (1980); Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972) (per curiam). While the standard under Rule 12(b)(6) does not require detailed factual allegations, a plaintiff must provide more than mere labels and conclusions. Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). A formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action is insufficient. Id.; see Papasan v. Allain, 478 U.S. 265, 286 (1986).

Additionally, a reviewing court should "begin by identifying pleadings [allegations] that, because they are no more than mere conclusions, are not entitled to the assumption of truth." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679 (2009). "While legal conclusions can provide the framework of a complaint, they must be supported with factual allegations." Id. "When there are well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief." Id. "Determining whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief [is] a context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and common sense." Id.

Finally, all or part of a complaint filed by a prisoner may therefore be dismissed sua sponte if the prisoner's claims lack an arguable basis either in law or in fact. This includes claims based on legal conclusions that are untenable (e.g., claims against defendants who are immune from suit or claims of infringement of a legal interest which clearly does not exist), as well as claims based on fanciful factual allegations (e.g., fantastic or delusional ...


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