Daniel v. Colvin
ORDER signed by Judge Pamela Pepper on 12/20/2016 GRANTING 3 Motion for Leave to Proceed Without Prepayment of the Filing Fee. (cc: all counsel) (pwm)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN
ARTHUR DANIEL, JR.,
Case No. 16-CV-1457-PP
CAROLYN W. COLVIN,
Acting Commissioner of the
Social Security Administration,
ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S
REQUEST TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS (DKT. NO. 3)
On November 1, 2016, the plaintiff filed an appeal from the defendant’s
final decision denying his Social Security benefits. Dkt. No. 1. Along with the
appeal, the plaintiff filed an affidavit in support of his motion asking the court
to allow him to proceed without paying the filing fee. Dkt. No. 3. In order to
allow a plaintiff to proceed without paying the filing fee, the court must first
decide whether the plaintiff has the ability to pay the filing fee, and if not, must
determine whether the lawsuit is frivolous. 28 U.S.C. §§1915(a) and (e)(2)(B)(i).
In the affidavit, the plaintiff indicates that he is single, unemployed, and
receives only $194 in Food Share income, all of which all goes toward his
groceries. Dkt. No. 3 at 1-2. The plaintiff has demonstrated that he cannot pay
the full amount of the $350 filing fee and $50 administrative fee.
The next step is to determine whether the case is frivolous. A case is
frivolous if there is no arguable basis for relief either in law or in fact. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992) (quoting Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319,
325 (1989)); Casteel v. Pieschek, 3 F.3d 1050, 1056 (7th Cir. 1993).
A person may obtain district court review of a final decision of the
Commissioner of Social Security. 42 U.S.C. §405(g). The district court must
uphold the Commissioner’s final decision as long as the Commissioner used
the correct legal standards and the decision is supported by substantial
evidence. See Roddy v. Astrue, 705 F.3d 631, 636 (7th Cir. 2013).
In his complaint, the plaintiff seeks review of the Commissioner’s
decision denying him Supplemental Security Income. Dkt. No. 1 at 1. The
plaintiff asserts that he has been disabled since 2009. Dkt. No. 3 at 3. During
this time, he was incarcerated for a period of time, and was denied his
disability. Id. He no longer is incarcerated, but states that he still has not
received disability. Id. The plaintiff alleges that the “Commissioner’s
conclusions and findings are not supported by substantial evidence; and/or
contrary to the social security regulations and law.” Dkt. No. 1 at 2.
Based on the allegations of the complaint, the court cannot find at this
point that the plaintiff’s claims are frivolous or without merit. At this early
stage in the case, the court concludes that there may be a basis in law or fact
for the plaintiff’s appeal of the Commissioner’s decision, and that the appeal
may have merit, as defined by 28 U.S.C. §1915(e)(2)(B)(i).
The court ORDERS that the plaintiff’s motion for leave to appeal in forma
pauperis (Dkt. No. 3) is GRANTED.
Dated in Milwaukee, Wisconsin this 20th day of December, 2016.
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