Lyman v. Arizona Department of Economic Service

Filing 8

ORDER: Plaintiff's request for IFP status 2 is granted; Plaintiff's complaint 1 is dismissed without prejudice; Plaintiff shall have until July 7, 2014 to file an amended complaint; The Clerk of Court shall terminate this action without further order of the Court if Plaintiff fails to file an amended complaint by July 7, 2014. Signed by Judge David G Campbell on 6/6/2014. (ALS)

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1 WO 2 3 4 5 6 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 FOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONA 8 9 Alexandro Lyman, No. CV-14-0964-PHX-DGC Plaintiff, 10 11 v. 12 ORDER Arizona Department of Economic Services, Defendant. 13 14 Plaintiff Alexandro Lyman has filed a complaint against the Arizona Department 15 of Economic Services. Doc. 1. He has also filed a motion to proceed in forma pauperis 16 (“IFP”). 17 complaint, and dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim. 18 I. Doc. 2. The Court will grant his application for IFP status, screen his Motion for IFP Status. 19 Plaintiff attaches an affidavit on a court-approved form which suggests that he 20 receives a total monthly income of $0, that he has monthly expenses totaling $0, and that 21 he has a medical condition that prevents him from working. Doc. 2. His motion for IFP 22 status will be granted. 23 II. Legal Standard. 24 In IFP proceedings, a district court “shall dismiss the case at any time if the court 25 determines that . . . the action . . . fails to state a claim on which relief can be granted[.]” 26 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). Although much of § 1915 concerns prisoner litigation, § 1915(e) 27 applies to all IFP proceedings. Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126 n.7 (9th Cir. 2000) 28 (en banc). “Section 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) . . . allows a district court to dismiss[ ] sua 1 sponte . . . a complaint that fails to state a claim[.]” Id. at 1130. “It is also clear that 2 section 1915(e) not only permits but requires a district court to dismiss an in forma 3 pauperis complaint that fails to state a claim.” Id. at 1127. A district court dismissing 4 under this section “should grant leave to amend even if no request to amend the pleading 5 was made, unless it determines that the pleading could not possibly be cured by the 6 allegation of other facts.” Id. at 1127-29 (citations omitted). 7 Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that “[a] pleading that 8 states a claim for relief must contain . . . a short and plain statement of the claim showing 9 that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a). This short and plain statement 10 “need not contain detailed factual allegations; rather, it must plead ‘enough facts to state 11 a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.’” Clemens v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., 534 12 F.3d 1017, 1022 (9th Cir. 2008) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 13 (2007)); see also Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (“The plausibility 14 standard . . . asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has acted 15 unlawfully”). 16 presumption of truthfulness and “conclusory allegations of law and unwarranted 17 inferences are not sufficient.” Pareto v. F.D.I.C., 139 F.3d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1998). 18 Dismissal is appropriate where the complaint lacks a cognizable legal theory, lacks 19 sufficient facts alleged under a cognizable legal theory, or contains allegations disclosing 20 some absolute defense or bar to recovery. See Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dept., 901 21 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1988); Weisbuch v. Cnty of L.A., 119 F.3d 778, 783 n.1 (9th Cir. 22 1997). 23 III. Legal conclusions couched as factual allegations are not given a Plaintiff’s Complaint. 24 Plaintiff’s complaint contains a rambling and largely incoherent narrative that 25 appears to allege various wrongs committed by the Arizona Department of Economic 26 Security (“DES”), including allegations that DES violated 18 U.S.C. §§ 241, 242, 246, 27 1035, and 2340. Plaintiff alleges virtually no facts in support of these claims, instead 28 claiming that his “health care coverage was stop (sic)” and “food stamps were stop as -2- 1 while (sic).” Doc. 1 at 3. Plaintiff does not allege when or why his health care coverage 2 and food stamps were allegedly stopped or how those actions violate the statutes 3 referenced. 4 The complaint is difficult to understand, contains virtually no facts, and fails to 5 state a plausible claim for relief. The Court will therefore dismiss it for failure to state a 6 claim. The Court also notes that the complaint fails to state the legal nature of Plaintiff’s 7 claim, the basis for this Court’s jurisdiction, the specific defendants being sued, or the 8 actions of those defendants that give rise to liability. 9 IV. Leave to Amend and Plaintiff’s Obligations. 10 In this circuit, “[a] pro se litigant must be given leave to amend his or her 11 complaint unless it is absolutely clear that the deficiencies of the complaint could not be 12 cured by amendment.” Karim-Panahi v. L.A. Police Dep’t, 839 F.2d 621, 623 (9th Cir. 13 1988). The Court will dismiss the complaint without prejudice and allow Plaintiff to file 14 an amended complaint, consistent with this order, that properly states a claim for relief. 15 Plaintiff shall have until July 7, 2014 to file an amended complaint. 16 Plaintiff is advised that he must become familiar with, and follow, the Federal 17 Rules of Civil Procedure and the Rules of the United States District Court for the District 18 of Arizona (“Local Rules”), which may be obtained in the Clerk of Court’s office. For 19 purposes of the amended complaint, Plaintiff is directed to Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of 20 Civil Procedure. Rule 8(a) provides that a complaint “must contain (1) a short and plain 21 statement of the grounds for the court’s jurisdiction, . . . (2) a short and plain statement of 22 the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, and (3) a demand for the relief 23 sought.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a). These pleading requirements shall be set forth in separate 24 and discrete paragraphs. Rule 8(d) provides that each such paragraph “must be simple, 25 concise, and direct.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(d)(1). 26 The “short and plain statement of the claim” required by Rule 8(a)(2) must not 27 only designate a cause of action, but must also include enough factual allegations to 28 render the claim plausible. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 677. If Plaintiff chooses to file an amended -3- 1 complaint asserting constitutional violations by federal or state officials, his pleading 2 should include a statement of the constitutional rights Plaintiff believes to have been 3 violated, how each right was violated, how each defendant contributed to the violation, 4 and what injury was caused by each alleged constitutional violation. 5 allegations must provide enough information to “allow[ ] the court to draw the reasonable 6 inference that the defendant[s are] liable for the misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 7 678. Such factual 8 If Plaintiff fails to prosecute this action or to comply with the rules or any Court 9 order, the Court may dismiss the action with prejudice pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil 10 Procedure 41(b). See Ferdik v. Bonzelet, 963 F.2d 1258, 1260-61 (9th Cir. 1992) 11 (holding that the district court did not abuse its discretion in dismissing a pro se 12 plaintiff’s complaint for failing to comply with a court order). 13 IT IS ORDERED: 14 1. Plaintiff’s request for IFP status (Doc. 2) is granted. 15 2. Plaintiff’s complaint (Doc. 1) is dismissed without prejudice. 16 3. Plaintiff shall have until July 7, 2014 to file an amended complaint. 17 4. The Clerk of Court shall terminate this action without further order of the 18 Court if Plaintiff fails to file an amended complaint by July 7, 2014. 19 20 Dated this 6th day of June, 2014. 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 -4-

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