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Ramon Aguilar v. Pacific Orthopedic Medical Group

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


May 14, 2013

RAMON AGUILAR,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
PACIFIC ORTHOPEDIC MEDICAL GROUP, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jennifer L. Thurston United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL (Doc. 50)

On March 14, 2013, Plaintiff Ramon Aguilar filed motion for appointment of counsel, asserting he has been unable to acquire counsel due to his incarceration and inability to meet with an attorney in the Eastern District. (Doc. 50 at 1).

There is no constitutional right to counsel in most civil cases, but the Court may request an attorney to represent indigent persons. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). The Court cannot require an attorney to represent a plaintiff pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. Mallard v. U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298 (1989). Nevertheless, in "exceptional circumstances," the Court has discretion to request the voluntary assistance of counsel. Rand v. Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997).

To determine whether "exceptional circumstances exist, the district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success of the merits [and] the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved." Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525 (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). Here, Plaintiff has demonstrated he is able to respond to the Court's orders and meet deadlines set by the Court. Further, at this early stage in the proceeding, the Court is unable to make a determination that Plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits. Therefore, the Court does not find the required exceptional circumstances exist for appointment of counsel.

Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED: Plaintiff's motion for the appointment of counsel (Doc. 50) is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20130514

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