IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
January 4, 2011
JOHN KENT, PLAINTIFF,
CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS, CONTRACTORS STATE LICENSE BOARD, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge
On November 30, 2010, the following defendants filed a motion to
dismiss plaintiff's Ninth Amended Complaint pursuant to Federal Rule
of Civil Procedure 12(b): Kevin Carr, Thomas Ebling, Jim Kleiman, Rick
Lopez, Patricia Nelson, Sue Payne, Diana Roach, Anita Sisneros, Sue
Stirewalt, Stephen Takimoto, Carl Vega, Rick Villucci, and Leslie
Yocum-Howell. (the "Moving Defendants")*fn1 (Dkt. No.
28.) The Moving Defendants noticed their motion to dismiss for a
hearing to take place before the undersigned on January 13, 2011.
Pursuant to this court's Local Rules, plaintiff was obligated to file
and serve a written opposition or statement of non-opposition to the
Moving Defendants' motion at least fourteen days prior to the hearing
date, or by December 30, 2010. See E. Dist. Local Rule 230(c).*fn2
The court's docket reveals that plaintiff, who is proceeding
without counsel, failed to file a written opposition or statement of
non-opposition with respect to the Moving Defendants' motion to
Eastern District Local Rule 110 provides that "[f]ailure of counsel or of a party to comply with these Rules or with any order of the Court may be grounds for imposition by the Court of any and all sanctions authorized by statute or Rule or within the inherent power of the Court." Moreover, Eastern District Local Rule 183(a) provides, in part:
Any individual representing himself or herself without an attorney is bound by the Federal Rules of Civil or Criminal Procedure, these Rules, and all other applicable law. All obligations placed on "counsel" by these Rules apply to individuals appearing in propria persona. Failure to comply therewith may be ground for dismissal . . . or any other sanction appropriate under these Rules.
See also King v. Atiyeh, 814 F.2d 565, 567 (9th Cir. 1987) ("Pro se litigants must follow the same rules of procedure that govern other litigants."). Case law is in accord that a district court may impose sanctions, including involuntary dismissal of a plaintiff's case pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b), where that plaintiff fails to prosecute his or her case or fails to comply with the court's orders, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, or the court's local rules.*fn3
See Chambers v. NASCO, Inc., 501 U.S. 32, 44 (1991) (recognizing that a court "may act sua sponte to dismiss a suit for failure to prosecute"); Hells Canyon Preservation Council v. U.S. Forest Serv., 403 F.3d 683, 689 (9th Cir. 2005) (stating that courts may dismiss an action pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b) sua sponte for a plaintiff's failure to prosecute or comply with the rules of civil procedure or the court's orders); Ghazali v. Moran, 46 F.3d 52, 53 (9th Cir. 1995) (per curiam) ("Failure to follow a district court's local rules is a proper ground for dismissal."); Ferdik v. Bonzelet, 963 F.2d 1258, 1260 (9th Cir. 1992) ("Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b), the district court may dismiss an action for failure to comply with any order of the court."); Thompson v. Housing Auth. of City of L.A., 782 F.2d 829, 831 (9th Cir. 1986) (per curiam) (stating that district courts have inherent power to control their dockets and may impose sanctions including dismissal).
In light of the foregoing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
1. The hearing on the Moving Defendants' motion to dismiss plaintiff's Ninth Amended Complaint (Dkt. No. 28), which is presently set for January 13, 2011, is continued until February 17, 2011.
2. Plaintiff shall file a written opposition to the motion to dismiss, or a statement of non-opposition thereto, on or before January 20, 2011. Plaintiff's failure to file a written opposition will be deemed a statement of non-opposition to the pending motion and consent to the granting of the motion to dismiss, and shall constitute an additional ground for the imposition of appropriate sanctions, including a recommendation that plaintiff's case be involuntarily dismissed pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b).
3. The Moving Defendants may file a written reply to plaintiff's opposition, if any, on or before February 3, 2010.
IT IS SO ORDERED.