Mohawk v. William Floyd School District
MEMORANDUM & ORDER re: 2 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis is GRANTED and Plaintiff's request (in his Complaint) for the appointment of counsel is DENIED without prejudice and with leave to renew when this case is trial ready. The Court certifies that any appeal from this Order would not be taken in good faith. Ordered by Judge Joanna Seybert on 5/20/2013. (C/M Plaintiff) (Nohs, Bonnie)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
MEMORANDUM & ORDER
-againstWILLIAM FLOYD SCHOOL DISTRICT,
Harold Mohawk, pro se
11 Robert Street
Mastic, New York 11950
SEYBERT, District Judge:
Before the Court are the applications of the pro se
plaintiff Harold Mohawk (“Plaintiff”) to proceed in forma pauperis
and for the appointment of pro bono counsel.
For the reasons that
follow, the application to proceed in forma pauperis is granted and
the application for the appointment of pro bono counsel is denied
without prejudice and with leave to renew when this case is trial
In Forma Pauperis Application
discrimination Complaint pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights
Act of 1964, as codified, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e to 2000e-17 (“Title
VII”), against his former employer, William Floyd School District
(“Defendant”), accompanied by an application to proceed in forma
pauperis. Upon review of the Plaintiff’s declaration in support of
his application to proceed in forma pauperis, the Court finds that
Plaintiff’s financial status qualifies him to commence this action
without prepayment of the filing fee.
28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1).
Accordingly, Plaintiff’s application to proceed in forma pauperis
The Clerk of the Court is directed to forward copies
of the Summons, Plaintiff’s Complaint, and this Order to the United
States Marshal Service for service upon the Defendant forthwith.
Request for the Appointment of Pro Bono Counsel
Plaintiff also requests that the Court appoint pro bono
counsel to represent him in this case.
For the reasons set forth
below, the application for the appointment of pro bono counsel is
denied with leave to renew when the case is ready for trial, if
warranted at that time. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1), courts
may appoint an attorney to represent someone unable to afford
Courts possess broad discretion when determining whether
appointment is appropriate, “subject to the requirement that it be
‘guided by sound legal principle.’”
Cooper v. A. Sargenti Co.,
Inc., 877 F.2d 170, 171-72 (2d Cir. 1989) (quoting Jenkins v.
Chemical Bank, 721 F.2d 876, 879 (2d Cir. 1983)).
Circuit set forth the principle as follows:
[T]he district judge should first determine
whether the indigent’s position seems likely
to be of substance. If the claim meets this
threshold requirement, the court should then
consider the indigent's ability to investigate
cross-examination will be the major proof
presented to the fact finder, the indigent's
ability to present the case, the complexity of
the legal issues and any special reason in
that case why appointment of counsel would be
more likely to lead to a just determination.
Hodge v. Police Officers, 802 F.2d 58, 61-62 (2d Cir. 1986).
Second Circuit also held that these factors are not restrictive and
that “[e]ach case must be decided on its own facts.”
Id. at 61.
The Court has reviewed the Complaint and finds that the
appointment of pro bono counsel is not warranted at this stage of
The Court is unable to conclude, at this juncture
in the litigation and after considering the above referenced Hodge
factors in the context of the Plaintiff’s Complaint, that the
appointment of pro bono counsel is warranted.
Accordingly, Plaintiff’s application for appointment of
counsel is DENIED without prejudice and with leave to renew when
this case is ready for trial if circumstances warrant such an
application at that time.
application to proceed in
is GRANTED and his
application for the appointment of pro bono counsel is DENIED with
leave to renew when this case is ready for trial if so warranted at
The Court certifies pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3)
that any appeal from this Order would not be taken in good faith
and therefore in forma pauperis status is denied for the purpose of
See Coppedge v. United States, 369 U.S. 438, 444-45,
82 S. Ct. 917, 8 L. Ed. 2d 21 (1962).
/s/ JOANNA SEYBERT
Joanna Seybert, U.S.D.J.
20 , 2013
Central Islip, New York
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