United States District Court, D. Nevada
ORDER (IFP Application - ECF No. 1)
LEEN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
matter is before the court on Plaintiff Grace Albanese's
Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis (ECF No. 1)
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 and LSR 1-1 of the Local
Rules of Practice. This Application is referred to the
undersigned pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A) and LR
IB 1-3 of the Local Rules of Practice.
In Forma Pauperis Application
Albanese is proceeding in this action pro se, which
means that she is not represented by an attorney.
See LSR 2-1. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 and
LSR 1-1, any person who is unable to prepay the fees in a
civil case may apply to the court for authority to proceed
in forma pauperis (“IFP”), meaning
without prepaying the full $400 filing fee. Here, Albanese
has requested authority to proceed IFP and submitted the
affidavit required by § 1915(a) showing that she is
unable to prepay fees and costs or give security for them.
Accordingly, her request to proceed IFP will be granted and
the court will review the complaint (ECF No. 1-1).
Screening the Complaint
to § 1915(e), federal courts must screen all IFP
complaints prior to a responsive pleading. Lopez v.
Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1129 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc)
(§ 1915(e) applies to “all in forma pauperis
complaints”). If the court determines that the
complaint states a valid claim for relief, the court will
direct the Clerk of the Court to issue summons to the
defendant(s) and the plaintiff must then serve the summons
and complaint within 90 days. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
4(m). If the court determines that the complaint fails to
state an actionable claim, the complaint is dismissed and the
plaintiff is ordinarily given leave to amend with directions
as to curing the pleading deficiencies, unless it is clear
from the face of the complaint that the deficiencies could
not be cured by amendment. Cato v. United States, 70
F.3d 1103, 1106 (9th Cir. 1995).
in a pro se complaint are held to less stringent
standards than formal pleading drafted by lawyers.
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007);
Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 342 n.7 (9th Cir.
2010). However, pro se litigants “should not
be treated more favorably than parties with attorneys of
record, ” Jacobsen v. Filler, 790 F.2d 1362,
1364 (9th Cir. 1986); rather, they must follow the same rules
of procedure that govern other litigants. Ghazali v.
Moran, 46 F.3d 52, 54 (9th Cir. 1995).
Ms. Albanese's Factual Allegations and Claims for
complaint names the Regional Transportation Commission of
Southern Nevada (“RTC”) as the defendant and
states that this action is based on a violation of Title
VI's antidiscrimination law. Ms. Albanese alleges that on
August 5, 2016, a bus driver told her to go to a different
bus stop and board a different bus. The bus driver refused to
allow her to board the bus and yelled at her. The bus driver
was very angry that Albanese did not want to comply with
those instructions. Albanese exited the bus and boarded
another bus at a different bus stop. Ms. Albanese states that
she suffered a humiliating sense of rejection and demands one
million dollars for her psychological damage.
reasons discussed below, the court finds that the complaint
fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
courts are required to dismiss an IFP action if the complaint
fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, is
legally “frivolous or malicious, ” or seeks
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). The standard for
determining whether a plaintiff fails to state a claim upon
which relief can be granted under § 1915 is the same as
the standard under Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure for failure to state a claim. Watison
v. Carter, 668 F.3d 1108, 1112 (9th Cir. 2012). A
district court may dismiss a plaintiff's complaint for
“failure to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). Review under Rule
12(b)(6) is essentially a ruling on a question of law. N.
Star Intern. v. Ariz. Corp. Comm'n, 720 F.2d 578,
580 (9th Cir. 1983).
properly pled complaint must provide “a short and plain
statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled
to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2); accord Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). The
simplified pleading standard set forth in Rule 8(a) applies
to all civil actions with limited exceptions. Alvarez v.
Hill, 518 F.3d 1152, 1159 (9th Cir. 2008). Although Rule
8 does not require detailed factual allegations, it demands
“more than labels and conclusions” or a
“formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (citation omitted). This requires a plaintiff to state
“enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that
discovery will reveal evidence” of the allegations
charged. Cafasso, United States ex rel. v. General
Dynamics C4 Systems, Inc., 637 F.3d 1047, 1055 (9th Cir.
2011) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556). Mere
recitals of the elements of a cause of action supported only
by conclusory allegations do not suffice. Iqbal, 556
U.S. at 679-80. A complaint “must contain sufficient
allegations of underlying facts to give fair notice and to
enable the opposing party to defend itself
effectively.” Starr v. Baca, 652 F.3d 1202,
1216 (9th Cir. 2011). Where the claims in the complaint have
not crossed the line from plausible to conceivable, the
complaint should be dismissed. Twombly, 550 U.S. at
570. Stated differently, the factual allegations “must
plausibly suggest an entitlement to relief, such that it is
not unfair to require the opposing party to be subjected to
the expense of discovery and continued litigation.”
Starr, 652 F.3d at 1216.