WILCOX v. PIMPINELLI
OPINION. Signed by Judge Kevin McNulty on 2/16/2021. (ams, )
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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
Civ. No. 21-2063 (KM) (ESK)
KEVIN MCNULTY, U.S.D.J.
Plaintiff, Raheem Wilcox, a state prisoner, filed pro se with the Court a civil rights
complaint as well as an application to proceed in forma pauperis. (ECF Nos. 1, 1-2.) As Mr.
Wilcox’s in forma pauperis application is incomplete, it will be denied without prejudice and this
case will be administratively terminated.
A complaint must generally include either a $402.00 fee (a $350.00 filing fee plus a $52.00
administrative fee) or an application to proceed in forma pauperis. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1914(a), 1915(a).
If a prisoner plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis, the $350.00 filing fee is still assessed, but
may be paid in installments as described below. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b).
A prisoner who seeks to proceed in forma pauperis must submit an affidavit, including a
statement of all assets, stating that the prisoner is unable to pay the applicable filing fee. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1). The prisoner must also submit a certified copy of his inmate trust fund account
statement for the six-month period immediately preceding the filing of his complaint. See id. §
1915(a)(2). The prisoner must obtain this statement from the appropriate official of each prison at
which he was or is confined. See id.; see also L. Civ. R. 81.2(b) (“Whenever a Federal, State, or
local prisoner submits a civil rights complaint, . . . the prisoner shall also submit an affidavit setting
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forth information which establishes that the prisoner is unable to pay the fees and costs of the
proceedings and shall further submit a certification signed by an authorized officer of the
institution certifying (1) the amount presently on deposit in the prisoner’s prison account and, (2)
the greatest amount on deposit in the prisoner’s prison account during the six-month period prior
to the date of the certification.”).
Even if a prisoner is granted in forma pauperis status, he must pay the full amount of the
filing fee of $350.00. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). In each month that the amount in the prisoner’s
account exceeds $10.00, the agency having custody of the prisoner shall assess, deduct from the
prisoner’s account, and forward to the Clerk of the Court, payment equal to 20% of the preceding
month’s income credited to the prisoner’s account. See id. § 1915(b)(2). The deductions will
continue until the $350.00 filing fee is paid.
Even if the necessary fees are paid and the complaint is accepted for filing, the Court may
nevertheless immediately dismiss the case. The Court must review the complaint and dismiss it if
it finds that the action (1) is frivolous or malicious, (2) fails to state a claim upon which relief may
be granted, or (3) seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. See
id. § 1915(e)(2)(B); see also id. § 1915A(b).
If the plaintiff has, on three or more prior occasions while incarcerated, brought an action
or appeal in a court that was dismissed on any of the grounds listed above, he cannot bring another
action in forma pauperis unless he is in imminent danger of serious physical injury. See id. §
In this case, Mr. Wilcox failed to submit a complete in forma pauperis application.
Specifically, Mr. Wilcox failed to have his six-month prison account statement certified by a prison
official. (See ECF No. 1-2.) Therefore, the application will be denied without prejudice at this
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time. Accordingly, the Clerk of the Court will be ordered to administratively close this case. Mr.
Wilcox may reopen this action, however, by either paying the filing fee or submitting a complete
in forma pauperis application certified by a prison official.
/s/ Kevin McNulty
United States District Judge
DATED: February 16, 2021
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