Richardson v. Internal Revenue Service

Filing 4

ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT: The Clerk is DIRECTED to close the case (Without Prejudice) . Signed by Judge Beth Bloom on 11/15/2022. See attached document for full details. (mab)

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Case 1:22-cv-23645-BB Document 4 Entered on FLSD Docket 11/17/2022 Page 1 of 3 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA Case No. 22-cv-23645-BLOOM JASON RICHARDSON, v. Plaintiff, INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE, Defendant. _______________________________/ ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT THIS CAUSE is before the Court upon a review of pro se Plaintiff Jason Richardson’s Complaint, ECF No. [1], docketed on November 7, 2022. Richardson has not paid the filing fee but has moved to proceed in forma pauperis. ECF No. [3]. Because Richardson is a pro se litigant who has not paid the required filing fee, the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C. section 1915(e) apply. Under the statute, courts are permitted to dismiss a suit “any time [] the court determines that . . . (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). Having screened Richardson’s Complaint, the Court concludes it is subject to dismissal. To state a claim for relief, a pleading 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[.]” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a). “A party must state its claims or defenses in numbered paragraphs, each limited as far as practicable to a single set of circumstances.” Id. 10(b). More importantly, “a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.’” Ashcroft v. Case 1:22-cv-23645-BB Document 4 Entered on FLSD Docket 11/17/2022 Page 2 of 3 Case No. 22-cv-23645-BLOOM Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). The complaint must “give the defendant fair notice of what the claim is and the grounds upon which it rests[.]” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (cleaned up). Courts must “construe pro se pleadings liberally, holding them to a less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys.” Arrington v. Green, 757 F. App’x 796, 797 (11th Cir. 2018). Still, a pro se party must abide by Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2), which requires that a pleading contain a “short and plain statement of the claim” showing the pleader is entitled to relief. See Barmapov v. Amuial, 986 F.3d 1321, 1324 (11th Cir. 2021). Richardson’s Complaint is written on the form for suits arising under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 or Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). See generally ECF No. [1]. However, Richardson does not claim § 1983 or Bivens as a basis for this Court’s jurisdiction over this case. See id. at 3-4 (crossing out the Basis for Jurisdiction section of the form). Richardson’s Complaint asserts no basis for jurisdiction whatsoever. Failure to assert a basis for jurisdiction is ground alone for dismissal. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(1). The Complaint also suffers from an infirmity related to sovereign immunity. “Absent a waiver, sovereign immunity shields the Federal Government and its agencies from suit.” JBP Acquisitions, LP v. U.S. ex rel. FDIC, 224 F.3d 1260, 1263 (11th Cir. 2000) (quoting FDIC v. Meyer, 510 U.S. 471, 475 (1994)). “The United States has waived its sovereign immunity in order to allow taxpayers to file actions seeking tax refunds” under 26 U.S.C. § 7422(f)(1) and district courts have jurisdiction over such actions against the United States pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1346(a)(1). Mut. Assur., Inc. v. United States, 56 F.3d 1353, 1355 (11th Cir. 1995). However, prior to filing suit against the IRS, a taxpayer must first file “a claim for refund or credit” with the IRS. § 7422(a). Failure to file such an “administrative refund claim with the IRS in accordance 2 Case 1:22-cv-23645-BB Document 4 Entered on FLSD Docket 11/17/2022 Page 3 of 3 Case No. 22-cv-23645-BLOOM with the relevant provisions of the Internal Revenue Code is a jurisdictional prerequisite to the maintenance of a tax refund suit.” Id. at 1356. Richardson states that he “filed all necessary paperwork to obtain the allotted stimulus payments.” ECF No. [1] at 8. It is unclear what paperwork Richardson is referring to. Because Plaintiff has not alleged that he filed a refund claim, he has failed to meet the jurisdictional requirement of § 7422(a). Accordingly, it is ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that Richardson’s Complaint is DISMISSED without prejudice. The Clerk is DIRECTED to close the case and all pending motions are DENIED as moot. DONE AND ORDERED in Chambers at Miami, Florida, on November 15, 2022. _________________________________ BETH BLOOM UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE Copies to: Jason Richardson 200128036 Miami-Dade County-PDC Pretrial Detention Center Inmate Mail/Parcels 1321 NW 13th Street Miami, FL 33125 PRO SE 3

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