Wells v. Colvin et al
DECISION AND ORDER: Plaintiff's 18 Motion to Appoint Counsel is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. A copy of this NEF and Decision and Order have been mailed to the pro se Plaintiff. SO ORDERED. Signed by Hon. Frank P. Geraci, Jr. on 1/11/2018. (SFR)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
MICHAEL JAMES WELLS,
Case # 16-CV-6850-FPG
DECISION AND ORDER
SUPERINTENDENT J. COLVIN, et al.,
On January 5, 2018, pro se Plaintiff Michael James Wells moved to appoint counsel. ECF No.
18.1 There is no constitutional right to appointed counsel in civil cases, although the Court may appoint
counsel to assist indigent litigants pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e). See, e.g., Sears, Roebuck & Co. v.
Charles Sears Real Estate, Inc., 865 F.2d 22, 23 (2d Cir. 1988). The Court must carefully consider
whether to appoint counsel, because “every assignment of a volunteer lawyer deprives society of a
volunteer lawyer available for a deserving cause.” Cooper v. A. Sargenti Co., 877 F.2d 170, 172 (2d
Cir. 1989). The Court must consider several factors, including whether the indigent’s claims seem
likely to be of substance. See Hendricks v. Coughlin, 114 F.3d 390, 392 (2d Cir. 1997); Hodge v.
Police Officers, 802 F.2d 58 (2d Cir. 1986).
Here, it is unclear whether Plaintiff’s claims are likely to be of substance because this case is
in the early stages of litigation. Defendants just answered Plaintiff’s Complaint on December 22, 2017,
and no discovery has occurred. A scheduling conference is set for February 14, 2018 before Magistrate
Judge Jonathan W. Feldman. Therefore, Plaintiff’s Motion to Appoint Counsel (ECF No. 18) is
DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated: January 11, 2018
Rochester, New York
HON. FRANK P. GERACI, JR.
Chief Judge, United States District Court
Plaintiff also moved to appoint counsel on May 1, 2017 (ECF No. 5) and the Court denied that motion
(ECF No. 9).
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