The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Barry Ted MoskowitzUnited States District Judge
(1) DENYING MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS
AND (2) DIRECTING PLAINTIFF TO SHOW CAUSE WHY CASE CARPENTER SHOULD NOT
BE DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE
PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)
Steve Gomez, ("Plaintiff"), currently detained at George Bailey Detention Facility ("GBDF") in San Diego, California, and proceeding pro se, has submitted a civil rights Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1983.
Plaintiff has not prepaid the $350 filing fee mandated by 28 U.S.C. § 1914(a); instead, he has filed a Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis ("IFP") pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a) [Doc. No. 2].
All parties instituting any civil action, suit or proceeding in a district court of the United States, except an application for writ of habeas corpus, must pay a filing fee of $350. See 28 U.S.C. § 1914(a). An action may proceed despite a party's failure to pay only if the party is granted leave to proceed IFP pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). See Andrews v. Cervantes, 493 F.3d 1047, 1051 (9th Cir. 2007); Rodriguez v. Cook, 169 F.3d 1176, 1177 (9th Cir. 1999). "Under the PLRA, all prisoners who file IFP civil actions must pay the full amount of the filing fee," regardless of whether the action is ultimately dismissed for any reason. See Taylor v. Delatoore, 281 F.3d 844, 847 (9th Cir. 2002) (citing 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1) & (2)).
In order to comply with the PLRA, prisoners and criminal detainees like Plaintiff who seek leave to proceed IFP must also submit a "certified copy of the trust fund account statement (or institutional equivalent) for the prisoner for the 6-month period immediately preceding the filing of the complaint...." 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(a)(2).*fn1 From the certified trust account statement, the Court assesses an initial payment of 20% of (a) the average monthly deposits in the account for the past six months, or (b) the average monthly balance in the account for the past six months, whichever is greater, unless the prisoner has no assets. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1), (4); see Taylor, 281 F.3d at 850. Thereafter, the institution having custody of the prisoner must collect subsequent payments, assessed at 20% of the preceding month's income, in any month in which the prisoner's account exceeds $10, and forward those payments to the Court until the entire filing fee is paid. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(2).
While Plaintiff has filed a Motion to Proceed IFP in this matter pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a), he has not complied with 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(2) or S.D. CAL. CIVLR 3.2. Section 1915(a)(2) clearly mandates that he "shall submit a certified copy of the trust fund account statement (or institutional equivalent) ... for the 6-month period immediately preceding the filing of the complaint." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(2) (emphasis added). However, Plaintiff's IFP Motion includes no such certification.
Without Plaintiff's certified trust account statement or GBDF's "institutional equivalent," the Court is simply unable to assess the appropriate amount of the filing fee required to initiate this action. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). Accordingly, the Court must deny Plaintiff's Motion to Proceed IFP without prejudice at this time, but will provide Plaintiff with an opportunity to re-submit a completed application for IFP.
For the reasons set forth above, the ...