Gibson v. Smith
DECISION AND ORDER denying 14 Plaintiff's Motion to extend the time for service of the complaint and to compel the Monroe County Department of Human Services to provide an address for Defendant (Docket No. 14) is denied. Plaintiffs complaint is dismissed without prejudice pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m). The Clerk of the Court is directed to close the case. Signed by Hon. Michael A. Telesca on 3/19/18. A copy of this Decision and Order was sent by first class mail to Plaintiff.) (JMC)-CLERK TO FOLLOW UP-
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
RAMON CHARLES GIBSON,
DECISION AND ORDER
BEVERLY CASIOPIA SMITH,
Pro se plaintiff Ramon Charles Gibson (“Plaintiff”)
commenced the instant action on July 10, 2017, alleging
knowingly and fraudulently misled him into believing he
was the father of her minor child, who was born in 2003,
and thereby wrongfully caused him to pay child support,
as well as incurring other related expenses.
concurrently filed a motion for leave to proceed in forma
pauperis (Docket No. 2), which the Court denied on August
9, 2017 (Docket No. 3).
Plaintiff thereafter paid the
filing fee on September 1, 2017.
requesting permission to serve Defendant by publication.
Docket No. 7.
Plaintiff indicated in his motion that due
arrangements,” he had been unable to effectuate service.
Id. at 5.
On November 22, 2017, the Court issued a
Decision and Order denying Plaintiff’s request to serve
Defendant by publication.
Docket No. 9.
explained that, in order for service by publication to be
permissible, the Court would have to conclude both that
service was otherwise impossible and that Defendant was
likely to read the newspaper in which the notice was
Id. at 5.
The Court further explained that
Plaintiff had not identified any affirmative steps he had
taken to discover Defendant’s address “such as inquiring
computerized databases,” and that he had not “proposed a
newspaper in which service by publication could be made,
such that the Court could assess the likelihood that
defendant would read that newspaper.”
Id. at 5-6.
stating that “[i]f plaintiff still wishes to seek service
by publication, plaintiff may submit to the Court a
motion with additional information regarding the issues
identified above.” Id. at 6.
The Court sua sponte
extended Plaintiff’s time to serve Defendant to January
Id. at 7-8.
Plaintiff did not file an additional motion for
service by publication.
However, on December 11, 2017,
he filed a motion for an extension of time for service,
asking that the Court extend the deadline for service to
March 8, 2018.
Docket No. 10.
motion on December 27, 2017.
Docket No. 12.
extension of time for service.
The Court granted this
Docket No. 14.
further asks this Court to “compel the [Monroe County]
Department of Human Services to provide a current address
for the defendant.” Id. at 1.
To the extent that Plaintiff asks this Court to
determine Defendant’s current address, Plaintiff is not
entitled to such relief.
“It is the responsibility of
the plaintiff . . . to provide a current address at which
service may be effected on each defendant.”
Maldonado, No. 3:14-CV-437 MPS, 2015 WL 2016174, at *1
(D. Conn. May 1, 2015); see also Hunter v. Hill, No.
04CV920SC, 2009 WL 483154, at *2 (W.D.N.Y. Feb. 25, 2009)
(“[I]t is not the responsibility of the [Court] . . . to
provide plaintiffs with the names and addresses of the
defendants which they sue.”).
This Court has thousands
of cases pending before it, and simply does not have the
benefit of the other parties.
The Court also finds that a further extension of
Plaintiff’s time to serve Defendant is not appropriate.
The Court is cognizant that Plaintiff is proceeding pro
representation that he is unable to locate Defendant.
its November 22, 2017 Decision and Order (Docket No. 9),
the Court identified various ways in which Plaintiff
could attempt to ascertain Defendant’s address, including
by searching computerized databases and by inquiring at
the United States Postal Service.
The Court further
explained what information it would need from Plaintiff
to order service by publication.
The Court has also
granted Plaintiff multiple extensions of his time to
However, even where there is “good cause” for a
plaintiff’s inability to locate a defendant, the Court
cannot extend the time for service indefinitely so as to
“render[ ] [Federal] Rule [of Civil Procedure] 4(m) a
Jordan v. Soyer, No. 97 CIV. 5345
(JSR), 1998 WL 460207, at *1 (S.D.N.Y. July 28, 1998)
(internal quotation omitted).
Plaintiff has been given eight months to effectuate
filing does not indicate that he followed through on the
methods identified by the Court in its November 22, 2017
Decision and Order in attempting to locate an address for
properly supported motion for service by publication,
despite the fact that the Court clearly informed him of
what information would need to be included in such a
Under these circumstances, the Court finds that
the interests of justice would not be served by granting
Plaintiff’s pending motion for another extension of time.
See Jordan, 1998 WL 460207 at *1 (although the Court was
plaintiff face significant obstacles and must be given
every consideration,” dismissal was appropriate under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m) because “plaintiff’s
occasions for more than an appropriate period”) (internal
quotation omitted); see also Terry v. Vill. of Ossining,
No. 12 CIV. 5855 ER, 2013 WL 5952834, at *3 (S.D.N.Y.
Nov. 5, 2013) (“Where a pro se plaintiff has failed to
effectuate timely service, courts have typically held
Accordingly, Plaintiff’s request for additional time to
Plaintiff has failed to timely serve Defendant, the Court
finds that dismissal without prejudice is warranted under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m).
For the reasons set forth above, Plaintiff’s motion
to extend the time for service of the complaint and to
compel the Monroe County Department of Human Services to
provide an address for Defendant (Docket No. 14) is
prejudice pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
The Clerk of the Court is directed to close the
ALL OF THE ABOVE IS SO ORDERED.
s/ Michael A. Telesca
MICHAEL A. TELESCA
United States District Judge
March 19, 2017
Rochester, New York
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