Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. D.C. No. CV-91-00147-MISC. Marilyn H. Patel, District Judge, Presiding
Before: Goodwin, D.w. Nelson, and Reinhardt, Circuit Judges.
Paul Gulbenkian appeals pro se the district court's order denying leave to file his employment discrimination complaint without prepayment of the filing fee. We review for an abuse of discretion, Denton v. Hernandez, 112 S. Ct. 1728, 1734 (1992), and affirm.
Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. ("Title VII"), a claimant wishing to bring a civil action in the district court must file his or her complaint within 90 days from the date the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") dismissed the claim. 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f)(1); Scholar v. Pacific Bell, 963 F.2d 264, 267 (9th Cir. 1992). The 90-day filing period is a statute of limitations subject to equitable tolling in appropriate circumstances. Valenzuela v. Kraft, 801 F.2d 1170, 1174 (9th Cir. 1986), modified on other grounds, 815 F.2d 570 (1987).
Here, the EEOC issued its right-to-sue letter to Gulbenkian on September 28, 1990. Gulbenkian filed his complaint on September 18, 1991. Clearly, his filing was untimely. See 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f)(1).
Nevertheless, Gulbenkian appears to argue that his mental illness prevented him from timely filing his claim.*fn1 He filed letters from his physician, Dr. Paul Lowinger, describing Gulbenkian's emotional instability.*fn2 Although according to Lowinger, Gulbenkian was hospitalized from February 23, 1991 to March 22, 1991, Gulbenkian offers no explanation as to why he waited an additional seven months to file his claim. See Scholar, 963 F.2d at 268. Because Gulbenkian has made no showing to justify invocation of the doctrine of equitable tolling, the district court did not err by refusing to allow Gulbenkian to file his complaint. See id.