Chavez v. State of New Mexico et al

Filing 3

ORDER by District Judge Robert C. Brack Denying 2 Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis under 28 U.S.C. 1915 (jjs)

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICO STEVAN CHAVEZ, Petitioner, v. 17-CV-0756-RB-LF STATE OF NEW MEXICO, V. HORTON, SECOND JUDICIAL DISTRICT, Respondents. ORDER DENYING MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS This matter is before the Court on Petitioner Stevan Chavez’s Prisoner’s Motion and Affidavit For Leave To Proceed On Appeal Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 and Fed. R. App. P. 24 (Doc. 2), which the Court liberally construes as a motion seeking leave to proceed in forma pauperis in district court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. For the reasons explained below, Petitioner’s motion will be denied. Title 28 of the United States Code, section 1915(a) provides that the Court may authorize the commencement of any suit without prepayment of fees “by a person who submits an affidavit that includes a statement of all assets [the person] possesses that the person is unable to pay such fees . . . .” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1). This statute “is designed to ensure that indigent litigants have meaningful access to the federal courts.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 324 (1989). However, “proceeding in forma pauperis in a civil case is a privilege, not a right—fundamental or otherwise.” White v. Colorado, 157 F.3d 1226, 1233 (10th Cir. 1998) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). While a litigant need not “be absolutely destitute to enjoy the benefit of the statute,” the litigant must provide an affidavit “which states that one cannot because of his poverty pay or give security for the costs . . . and still be able to provide for himself and dependents with the necessities of life.” Adkins v. E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., 335 U.S. 331, 339 (1948). The filing fee in the present case is $5.00. See 28 U.S.C. § 1914(a). According to the inmate account statement submitted by Petitioner, he has $155.59 available in his inmate account. (Doc. 2 at 3.) Because Petitioner has sufficient funds available to prepay the $5.00 filing fee, his motion to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 will be denied. Petitioner must pay the $5.00 filing fee within 30 days of the date of this order or show cause for his failure to do so. Failure timely to pay the filing fee or to show cause may result in the dismissal of this action without further notice. IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Petitioner’s motion to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 (Doc. 2) is DENIED; IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Petitioner submit the $5.00 filing fee within 30 days of the date of this Order or show cause why this action should not be dismissed. ____________________________________ ROBERT C. BRACK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

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