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Scott v. Hertz

United States District Court, D. Arizona

July 31, 2019

Gene Edward Scott, II, Plaintiff,
v.
Hertz, Defendant.

          ORDER

          Eileen S. Willett United States Magistrate Judge

         Before the Court are Plaintiff's Complaint (Doc. 1) and Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (Doc. 2).

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

          The district court may permit indigent litigants to proceed in forma pauperis upon completion of a proper affidavit of indigence. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). In the application to proceed without prepaying fees or costs, Plaintiff declares under penalty of perjury that he is unable to pay the filing fee and other costs associated with this case. Plaintiff presents financial information to support his application. Given Plaintiff's lack of income and the absence of any significant assets, his motion will be granted.

         II. LEGAL STANDARDS

         A. Statutory Screening of In Forma Pauperis Complaint Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)

         With respect to in forma pauperis proceedings, the Court shall dismiss such action at any time if it determines that:

(A) the allegation of poverty is untrue; or
(B) the action or appeal-
(i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) 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 fnt. 7 (9th Cir. 2000) (28 U.S.C. § 1915(e) “applies to all in forma pauperis complaints, ” not merely those filed by prisoners). The Court must therefore dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint if it fails to state a claim or if it is frivolous or malicious. Lopez, 203 F.3d at 1127 (“It is also clear that section 1915(e) not only permits but requires a district court to dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint that fails to state a claim.”); Franklin v. Murphy, 745 F.2d 1221, 1226-27 (9th Cir. 1984).

         In order to state a claim for relief, Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that a complaint must include: (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.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). The short and plain statement for relief “need not contain detailed factual allegations; rather, it must plead ‘enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Clemens v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., 534 F.3d 1017, 1022 (9th Cir. 2008) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). Rule 8 “demands more than an unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me accusation, ” see also Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009), and “conclusory allegations of law and unwarranted inferences are not sufficient, ” Pareto v. F.D.I.C., 139 F.3d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1998). Further, “[e]ach allegation must be simple, concise, and direct.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(d)(1).

         Rule 10 requires that:

A party must state its claims or defenses in numbered paragraphs, each limited as far as practicable to a single set of circumstances. A later pleading may refer by number to a paragraph in an earlier pleading. If doing so would promote clarity, each claim founded on a separate transaction or occurrence-and ...

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