United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Tacoma
ORDER DENYING APPLICATION FOR COURT-APPOINTED COUNSEL
AND ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE
J. Bryan United States District Judge.
matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff's Application
for Court-Appointed Counsel. Dkt. 8. The Court has considered
the application and the remainder of the file herein.
November 29, 2018, Plaintiff, a pro se, filed the
IFP application (Dkt. 1) and proposed civil complaint (Dkt.
1-1). The Plaintiff's IFP application was denied. Dkt. 2.
The Plaintiff paid the filing fee and his Complaint was
filed. Dkt. 3. The Complaint references several federal
statutes and the U.S. Constitution. Dkt. 3. It alleges that
the Plaintiff worked for Lockheed Martin, or an affiliate, in
the United Arab Emirates, and at some point, filed a labor
dispute claim. Id. Plaintiff asserts that his
employment was improperly terminated, he was denied certain
benefits, and was forced to engage in litigation in the
United Arab Emirates. Id. Plaintiff further asserts
that General Dynamics Corp did nothing to transfer
Plaintiff's work visa in the United Arab Emirates and
blocked his continued employment on a federal contract and on
other federal contracts. Id. The Plaintiff maintains
that the Department of Defense Inspector General refused to
properly investigate his complaint and termination.
Id. As a consequence of all the Defendants'
actions, the Plaintiff asserts that he was damaged.
pending motion, the Plaintiff moves for court-appointed
counsel and for an extension of time to file the Joint Status
Report and Discovery Plan (“JSR”), which is due
today, May 6, 2019. Dkt. 8. The original deadline to file the
JSR was April 11, 2019; the deadline was extended at the
Plaintiff's request. Further, although this case was
filed in November of 2018, it does not appear that the
Defendants have been served in accord with Fed.R.Civ.P. 4.
The Defendants have not appeared.
FOR COURT-APPOINTED COUNSEL:
to 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f)(1), “[u]pon application
by the complainant and in such circumstances as the court may
deem just, the court may appoint an attorney for such
complainant….” In deciding whether to appoint
counsel in a Title VII case, the court assesses the
applicant's financial resources, efforts the applicant
has already made to secure counsel, and whether the claim has
merit. Bradshaw v. Zoological Society of San Diego,
662 F.2d 1301 (9th Cir. 1981). Further, under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(1), the court may request an attorney to
represent any person unable to afford counsel. Under Section
1915, the court may appoint counsel in exceptional
circumstances. Franklin v. Murphy, 745 F.2d 1221,
1236 (9th Cir. 1984). To find exceptional circumstances, the
court must evaluate the likelihood of success on the merits
and the ability of the petitioner to articulate the claims
pro se in light of the complexity of the legal
issues involved. Weygandt v. Look, 718 F.2d 952, 954
(9th Cir. 1983).
Plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel (Dkt. 8)
should be denied. While Plaintiff is having difficulty
affording counsel and he states that he has made an effort to
contact lawyers, he has not shown that his claims have merit
or shown a likelihood of success on the merits. Further, the
Plaintiff appears to be able to articulate his claims
adequately in light of the legal issues involved. The
circumstances of this case do not make appointment of counsel
necessary or just, nor does the case present exceptional
circumstances. The application for appointment of counsel
(Dkt. 8) should be denied.
is informed that he is proceeding pro se in this
matter. He is expected to comply with the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure, the Local Rules for the United States
District Court for the Western District of Washington, and
orders of this Court.
TO SERVE THE DEFENDANTS.
to Fed.R.Civ.P. 4 (m), “[i]f a defendant is not served
within 90 days after the complaint is filed, the court - on
motion or on its own after notice to the plaintiff - must
dismiss the action without prejudice against that defendant
or order that service be made within a specified time.”
appears that the Defendants have not been served in accord
with Fed.R.Civ.P. 4. The Plaintiff should be ordered to
either file proof of service of the Defendants or show cause,
if any he has, in writing, why this case should not be
dismissed without prejudice under Fed.R.Civ.P. 4 (m) by
May 31, 2019.
TO FILE JSR AND MOTION FOR A CONTINUANCE.
Civ. P. 16 (f)(1) provides that the court, on motion or on
its own, may issue “any just orders including those
authorized by Fed.R.Civ.P. 37 (b)(2)(A)(ii)-(vii)” if a
party “fails to obey a scheduling or other pretrial
order.” Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 37 (b)(2)(A)(v), the court
may dismiss an action or proceeding in whole or in part for
failure to obey a court order. Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 16 (b)(4),
for good cause, the court may modify the scheduling order.
moves for a continuance of the JSR deadline in this case
“until after determination of this action” (Dkt.
8), which the Court should construe as a motion for a
continuance of the JSR deadline until after a decision on the
Plaintiff's application for court-appointed counsel is
issued. As ...