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Ditko v. Fabiano

United States District Court, D. Arizona

May 9, 2017

Stephen Paul Ditko, Plaintiff,
v.
Brian Fabiano, FabCom, and Fabiano Communications, Defendants.

          ORDER

         Pending before the Court is Plaintiff Stephen Paul Ditko's Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (Doc. 2), which the Court will grant. However, as detailed below, the Court will dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint (Doc. 1) because it fails to comply with Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The Court will allow Plaintiff leave to amend his Complaint to include facts sufficient to state a claim for relief.

         I. Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs

         In Plaintiff's Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs, he declares under penalty of perjury that he is unable to pay the filing fee and other costs associated with this case. Plaintiff has presented financial information to support his Application. Given Plaintiff's lack of significant income, the Court will grant his Application.

         II. Screening of In Forma Pauperis Complaint a. Legal Standards

         For cases proceeding in forma pauperis, Congress provided that a district court “shall dismiss the case at any time if the court determines” that the “allegation of poverty is untrue” or that the “action or appeal” is “frivolous or malicious, ” “fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted, ” or “seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2); see also Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126 n.7 (9th Cir. 2000) (noting that section 1915(e) applies to all in forma pauperis complaints, not merely those filed by prisoners). Accordingly, “section 1915(e) not only permits but requires a district court to dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint that fails to state a claim.” Lopez, 203 F.3d at 1127.

         Rule 8(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that to state a claim for relief, a complaint must contain (1) “a short and plain statement of the grounds for the court's jurisdiction, ” (2) “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, ” and (3) “a demand for the relief sought.” The complaint also must contain “sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). A plaintiff must allege facts sufficient “to raise a right to relief above the speculative level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. Further, the allegations “may not simply recite the elements of a cause of action, but 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).

         b. Plaintiff's Complaint

         Plaintiff appears to assert claims pursuant to the Arizona Employment Protection Act, A.R.S. § 23-1501(a)(3)(a). Plaintiff names Brian Fabiano, FabCom, and Fabiano Communications as Defendants, but asserts only the following allegations:

Jurisdiction
Phoenix Division
Complaint
In violation of ARS 23-1501. Severability of employment relationships; protection from retaliatory discharges; exclusivity of statutory remedies in employment.
3. An employee has a claim against an employer for termination of employment only if one of more of the following circumstances have occurred:
(a) The employer has terminated the employment relationship of an employee in breach of an ...

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