Lee v. AT&T et al

Filing 15

ORDER RE: 14 DENYING REQUEST FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL. Signed by Judge Richard Seeborg on 04/26/2010. (rslc3, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 4/26/2010)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 *E-Filed 04/26/2010* IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA SAN FRANCISCO DIVISION CHOONYOUN LEE, Plaintiff, No. C 09-5614 RS ORDER DENYING REQUEST FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 v. AT&T CORPORATION, et al., Defendants. ____________________________________/ By letter dated April 20, 2010, plaintiff Choonyoun Lee seeks appointed counsel in this lawsuit against defendant corporation AT&T. Plaintiff explains that since the initiation of the lawsuit, Lee has only found employment on a sporadic and temporary basis. Although no attorney has entered an appearance on plaintiff's behalf before this Court, Lee claims to have retained counsel but that the attorney has not agreed to provide representation should the matter proceed to trial. Generally, a person has no right to appointed counsel in civil actions. See Storseth v. Spellman, 654 F.2d 1349, 1353 (9th Cir. 1981). A court may under "exceptional circumstances" appoint counsel for indigent civil litigants pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915(e)(1). Agyeman v. Corrs. Corp. of Am., 390 F.3d 1101, 1103 (9th Cir. 2004). When determining whether "exceptional NO. C 09-5614 RS ORDER 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 circumstances" exist, a court considers "the likelihood of success on the merits as well as the ability of the petitioner to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved." Weygandt v. Look, 718 F.2d 952, 954 (9th Cir. 1983). Neither of these considerations is dispositive; rather, they must be viewed together. Wilborn v. Escalderon, 789 F.2d 1328, 1331 (9th Cir. 1986). Lee has presented no evidence of indigency, or that the circumstances are "exceptional" within the meaning described above. Accordingly, there is no legal basis to support the appointment of counsel and the request is denied. Plaintiff may wish to seek assistance from the Legal Help Center, a free service of the Volunteer Legal Services Program, by calling 415/782.9000 x8657 or signing up for an appointment on the 15th Floor of the Courthouse, Room 2796. At the Legal Help Center, plaintiff may speak with an attorney who may be able to provide basic legal help but not legal representation. United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: 04/26/2010 RICHARD SEEBORG UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE NO. C 09-5614 ORDER 2 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 THIS IS TO CERTIFY THAT NOTICE OF THIS DOCUMENT WAS ELECTRONICALLY PROVIDED* TO: Caren P. Sencer David Albert Rosenfeld John H Curley courtnotices@unioncounsel.net courtnotices@unioncounsel.net jcurley@att.com AND A HARD COPY OF THIS ORDER WAS MAILED TO: Choonyoun Lee 1571 East Gate Way Pleasanton, CA 94566 DATED: 04/26/2010 /s/ Chambers Staff Chambers of Judge Richard Seeborg United States District Court 11 For the Northern District of California 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 * Counsel are responsible for distributing copies of this document to any co-counsel who have not registered with the Court's electronic filing system. NO. C 09-5614 ORDER 3

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