Catanzaro v. MDOC et al

Filing 20

ORDER denying 19 Motion to Appoint Counsel. Signed by Magistrate Judge R. Steven Whalen. (GWil)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN SOUTHERN DIVISION MATTHEW CATANZARO and MICHAEL GARRISON, Plaintiffs, v. MICHIGAN DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS,, Defendants. / No. 08-11173 District Judge Thomas L. Ludington Magistrate Judge R. Steven Whalen ORDER DENYING MOTION TO APPOINT COUNSEL Plaintiffs, pro se prison inmates in this civil rights action brought under 42 U.S.C. 1983, have filed a motion for appointment of counsel [Docket #19]. Unlike criminal cases, there is no constitutional or statutory right to the appointment of counsel in civil cases. Rather, the Court requests members of the bar to assist in appropriate cases. In Lavado v. Keohane, 992 F.2d 601, 605-606 (6th Cir. 1993), the Sixth Circuit noted that "[a]ppointment of counsel in a civil case is not a constitutional right. It is a privilege that is justified only by exceptional circumstances." (Internal quotations and citations omitted). It is the practice of this Court to defer any attempt to obtain counsel for pro se civil rights Plaintiffs until after motions to dismiss or motions for summary judgment have been denied. In this case, the Defendants have not yet been served. At this point, the motion to appoint counsel is premature. If Plaintiffs' claims ultimately survive dispositive motions, they may renew their motion for appointment of counsel at that time. -1- Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiffs' motion for appointment of counsel [Docket #19] is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. S/R. Steven Whalen R. STEVEN WHALEN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE Dated: September 30, 2008 CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE The undersigned certifies that a copy of the foregoing order was served on the attorneys and/or parties of record by electronic means or U.S. Mail on September 30, 2008. S/G. Wilson Judicial Assistant -2-

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