United States District Court, C.D. California
ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT WITH LEAVE TO
HONORABLE KENLY KIYA KATO United States Magistrate Judge
April 18, 2018, Plaintiff Tracy Thomas
(“Plaintiff”), proceeding pro se filed a
Complaint against defendants Department of Child Support
Services (“DCSS”) and Santa Barbara County
(collectively, “Defendants”) alleging violations
of his constitutional rights. For the reasons discussed
below, the Court dismisses the Complaint with leave to amend.
April 18, 2018, Plaintiff, proceeding pro se, filed
a Complaint against Defendants alleging violations of his
constitutional rights. ECF Docket No. (“Dkt.”) 1.
The Complaint is purportedly brought under 18 U.S.C. §
and 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Id. While the facts
underlying the Complaint are not clear, it appears Plaintiff
is alleging a denial of equal protection and due process
based on actions taken by Defendants in connection with an
underlying child support case. Id. at 1-10.
Plaintiff seeks termination of “the current DCSS IV-D
Collections Case #1340153” and “all full refund
of all monies received, accompanied with the DCSS's 66%
federal profits therefrom, as well as penalties and
interest.” Id. at 10.
civil actions where the plaintiff is proceeding in forma
pauperis, Congress requires district courts to dismiss
the complaint “at any time” if the court
determines the complaint, or any portion thereof: (1) is
frivolous or malicious; (2) fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted; or (3) seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2); see also Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122,
1126-27 n.7 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc).
when a plaintiff is not proceeding in forma
pauperis, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6)
permits a court to dismiss a claim sua sponte and
without notice “where the claimant cannot possibly win
relief.” Omar v. Sea-Land Serv., Inc., 813
F.2d 986, 991 (9th Cir. 1987); see also Sparling v.
Hoffman Constr. Co., 864 F.2d 635, 638 (9th Cir. 1988)
(same). The court's authority in this regard includes
sua sponte dismissal of claims against defendants
who have not been served and defendants who have not yet
answered or appeared. See Abagnin v. AMVAC Chemical
Corp., 545 F.3d 733, 742-43 (9th Cir. 2008).
applying these standards, “a pro se complaint,
however inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent
standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.”
Woods v. Carey, 525 F.3d 886, 889-90 (9th Cir. 2008)
(citations and internal quotation marks omitted). However,
“a pro se litigant is not excused from knowing
the most basic pleading requirements” or “from
following court rules.” Am. Ass'n of
Naturopathic Physicians v. Hayhurst, 227 F.3d 1104,
1107-08 (9th Cir. 2000) (citation and internal quotation
marks omitted); see also Pliler v. Ford, 542 U.S.
225, 231, 124 S.Ct. 2441, 159 L.Ed.2d 338 (2004)
(“District judges have no obligation to act as counsel
or paralegal to pro se litigants.”).
THE ELEVENTH AMENDMENT BARS ALL CLAIMS AGAINST DEFENDANT
Eleventh Amendment prohibits federal courts from hearing
suits brought against an unconsenting state.”
Brooks v. Sulphur Springs Valley Elec. Coop., 951
F.2d 1050, 1053 (9th Cir. 1991) (citing Pennhurst State
Sch. & Hosp. v. Halderman, 465 U.S. 89, 100, 104
S.Ct. 900, 79 L.Ed.2d 67 (1984)). “[A]n entity with
Eleventh Amendment immunity is not a ‘person'
within the meaning of § 1983.” Howlett By
& Through Howlett v. Rose, 496 U.S. 356, 365, 110
S.Ct. 2430, 110 L.Ed.2d 332 (1990). This jurisdictional bar
includes “suits naming state agencies and ...