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Lawrence L. Marsh v. James Yates

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


April 21, 2011

LAWRENCE L. MARSH,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
JAMES YATES, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gary S. Austin United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER DENYING MOTION TO WITHDRAW CONSENT TO JURISDICTION OF MAGISTRATE JUDGE (Doc 36.)

I. RELEVANT PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Lawrence L. Marsh ("Plaintiff"), is a prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. On August 19, 2009, Plaintiff consented to the jurisdiction of a United States Magistrate Judge, and no other party has appeared in this action. (Doc. 5.) On February 2, 2011, Plaintiff filed a motion for reassignment of this case to a District Judge, which the Court construes as a motion to withdraw his consent to the jurisdiction of a Magistrate Judge. (Doc. 36.)

II. CONSENT TO JURISDICTION OF A MAGISTRATE JUDGE

A party to a federal civil case has, subject to some exceptions, a constitutional right to proceed before an Article III judge. Dixon v. Ylst, 990 F.2d 478, 479 (9th Cir. 1993); Pacemaker Diagnostic Clinic of America, Inc. v. Instromedix, Inc., 725 F.2d 537, 541 (9th Cir. 1984) (en banc), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 824, 105 S.Ct. 100, 83 L.Ed.2d 45 (1984). This right can be waived, allowing parties to consent to trial before a magistrate judge. Dixon at 479-480; Pacemaker at 542; 28 U.S.C. § 636(c)(1). Once a civil case is referred to a magistrate judge under section 636(c), the reference can be withdrawn only by the district court, and only "for good cause shown on its own motion, or under extraordinary circumstances shown by any party." Dixon at 480 (quoting Fellman v. Fireman's Fund Ins. Co., 735 F.2d 55, 58 (2d Cir.1984)); 28 U.S.C. § 636(c)(6); Fed.R.Civ.P. 73(b). There is no absolute right, in a civil case, to withdraw consent to trial and other proceedings before a magistrate judge. Dixon at 480.

Plaintiff offers no argument in support of his motion to withdraw consent, nor does he present evidence of extraordinary circumstances. Therefore, the Court finds no good cause to vacate the reference to a Magistrate Judge, and Plaintiff's motion shall be denied.

III. CONCLUSION

In light of the foregoing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff's motion to withdraw his consent to the jurisdiction of a Magistrate Judge is DENIED.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20110421

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