Watschke v. Department of the Air Force

Filing 9

ORDER DENYING 6 Plaintiff's Motion for Appointment of Counsel, signed by Magistrate Judge Jennifer L. Thurston on 9/13/2017. (Hall, S)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 MARIBEL WATSCHKE, Plaintiff, 12 13 v. 14 DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE, 15 Defendant. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Case No.: 1:17-cv-1211-DAD - JLT ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL (Doc. 6) 16 17 Maribel Watschke seeks for appointment of counsel, indicating she “will have difficulty 18 articulating …her claims pro se due to the complexity of the legal issues involved.” (Doc. 6 at 2) 19 Although much of the document is illegible due to the ink used by Plaintiff, it appears she contends that 20 she does not speak English well. (See id.) 21 Plaintiff is informed that in most civil cases, there is no constitutional right to counsel in most 22 civil cases, but the Court may request an attorney represent indigent persons. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). 23 The Court cannot require representation of a plaintiff pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. Mallard v. U.S. 24 District Court for the Southern District of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298 (1989). Nevertheless, in 25 “exceptional circumstances,” the Court has discretion to request the voluntary assistance of counsel. 26 Rand v. Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997). 27 28 To determine whether “exceptional circumstances exist, the district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success of the merits [and] the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims pro se in 1 1 light of the complexity of the legal issues involved.” Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525 (internal quotation marks 2 and citations omitted). Here, despite the assertion that she does not speak English well, Plaintiff was 3 able to communicate the facts alleged in her initial complaint. Further, at this early stage in the 4 proceeding, the Court is unable to make a determination that Plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits. 5 Therefore, the Court does not find the required exceptional circumstances at this time. 6 7 Accordingly, the Court ORDERS: Plaintiff’s motion for the appointment of counsel (Doc. 6) is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. 8 9 10 11 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: September 13, 2017 /s/ Jennifer L. Thurston UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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