Carter v. Centene Management Company

Filing 4

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER : IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's motion to appoint counsel is DENIED without prejudice. [ECF No. 3 ]. Signed by District Judge Ronnie L. White on 05/19/2023. (KCD)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI EASTERN DIVISION DE D. CARTER, Plaintiff, v. CENTENE MANAGEMENT COMPANY, Defendant. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) No. 4:23-CV-651 RLW MEMORANDUM AND ORDER This matter is before the Court on self-represented plaintiff De D. Carter’s motion to appoint counsel. For the following reasons, the motion will be denied without prejudice. In civil cases, a pro se litigant does not have a constitutional or statutory right to appointed counsel. Ward v. Smith, 721 F.3d 940, 942 (8th Cir. 2013); see also Stevens v. Redwing, 146 F.3d 538, 546 (8th Cir. 1998) (stating that “[a] pro se litigant has no statutory or constitutional right to have counsel appointed in a civil case”). Rather, a district court may appoint counsel in a civil case if the court is “convinced that an indigent plaintiff has stated a non-frivolous claim … and where the nature of the litigation is such that plaintiff as well as the court will benefit from the assistance of counsel.” Patterson v. Kelley, 902 F.3d 845, 850 (8th Cir. 2018). When determining whether to appoint counsel for an indigent litigant, a court considers relevant factors such as the complexity of the case, the ability of the pro se litigant to investigate the facts, the existence of conflicting testimony, and the ability of the pro se litigant to present his or her claim. Phillips v. Jasper Cnty Jail, 437 F.3d 791, 794 (8th Cir. 2006). After reviewing these factors, the Court finds that the appointment of counsel is not warranted. Plaintiff has demonstrated, at this point, that she can adequately present her claims to the Court. In addition, neither the factual nor the legal issues in this case appear to be complex. The Court will entertain future motions for appointment of counsel as the case progresses. Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff’s motion to appoint counsel is DENIED without prejudice. [ECF No. 3] RONNIE L. WHITE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE Dated this 19th day of May, 2023. 2

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