Wilkerson v. Kellogg Company et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER sustaining 54 Motion for Leave to Proceed on appeal in forma pauperis. Signed by District Judge Kathryn H. Vratil on 4/24/14. (hw)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
MONIQUE L. WILKERSON,
KELLOGG COMPANY, et al.,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Monique L. Wilkerson brought suit against her former employer and supervisors alleging
employment discrimination under Title VII, 42 U.S.C § 2000e et seq. and the Kansas Act Against
Discrimination (“KAAD”), K.S.A. § 44-1001 et seq. On March 13, 2014, the Court sustained
defendants’ motion for summary judgment. See Memorandum And Order (Doc. #51). This matter
is before the Court on plaintiff’s Motion For Leave To Proceed [On Appeal] Without Prepayment
Of Fees (Doc. #54) filed April 14, 2014.
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a), a federal court may authorize commencement of an action
without prepayment of fees by a person who lacks financial means. In so doing, the court considers
the affidavit of financial status included with the application. See id. In construing the application
and affidavit, courts generally compare an applicant’s monthly expenses to monthly income. See
Patillo v. N. Am. Van Lines, Inc., No. 02-2162, 2002 WL 1162684, at *1 (D. Kan. Apr. 15, 2002);
Webb v. Cessna Aircraft, No. 00-2229, 2000 WL 1025575, at *1 (D. Kan. July 17, 2000) (denying
motion because plaintiff had monthly income exceeding her monthly expenses by approximately
When a party seeks to appeal in forma pauperis, Rule 24, Federal Rules of Appellate
Procedure directs that the party file such motion in the district court. The party must provide an
affidavit which sets out (1) the amount and sources of income; (2) employment history; (3) cash on
hand and bank account balances; (4) assets including homes and motor vehicles; (5) money owed
to the party; (6) individuals who rely on the party for financial support; (7) average monthly
expenses and (8) attorney’s fees paid in connection with the case.
In her supporting financial affidavit, plaintiff indicates that she owns a modest home with
a small mortgage. Plaintiff and her spouse are unemployed; they currently live on monthly disability
benefits. Plaintiff enumerates reasonable monthly expenses including utilities, telephone, insurance,
gas, groceries and medical costs. These expenses exceed plaintiff’s monthly income by over $500.
Considering all of this information, the Court finds that plaintiff has established that her access to
the Courts would be seriously impaired if she is not granted in forma pauperis status. Under these
circumstances, the Court finds that plaintiff’s motion should be sustained.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that plaintiff’s Motion For Leave To Proceed [On
Appeal] Without Prepayment Of Fees (Doc. #54) filed April 14, 2014 be and hereby is
Dated this 24th day of April, 2014, at Kansas City, Kansas.
s/ Kathryn H. Vratil
Kathryn H. Vratil
United States District Judge
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