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Reid v. NC Legislature

United States District Court, E.D. North Carolina, Western Division

October 7, 2019

Emmanuel Reid, Plaintiff,
v.
NC Legislature, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER & MEMORANDUM & RECOMMENDATION

          ROBERT T. NUMBERS, II UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff Emmanuel Reid has filed a series of documents with the court that attempt to bring a civil action against a vast array of seemingly unrelated individuals and entities. He also asks to proceed without paying the costs usually associated with filing a civil action. Although the undersigned will grant his motion to proceed without paying the filing fees, the district court should dismiss this action for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.

         I. Application to Proceed without Prepaying Fees or Costs

         Reid asks the court to allow him to proceed with his action without paying the required filing fee and other costs associated with litigation (colloquially known as proceeding in forma pauperis or IFP). The court may grant his request if he submits an affidavit describing his assets and the court finds that he is unable to pay the filing fee. 28 U.S.C. § 1915. In assessing a request to proceed IFP, the court should consider whether the plaintiff can pay the costs associated with litigation “and still be able to provide himself and his dependents with the necessities of life.” Adkins v. E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., 335 U.S. 331, 339 (1948) (internal quotations omitted).

         The court has reviewed Reid's application and finds that he lacks the resources to pay the costs associated with this litigation. The court thus grants Reid's motion (D.E. 1) and allows him to proceed IFP.

         II. Screening Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915

         In addition to determining whether Reid is entitled to IFP status, the court must also analyze the viability of the claims contained in the Complaint. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e). The court reviews a complaint to eliminate those claims that unnecessarily impede judicial efficiency and the administration of justice. Specifically, the court must dismiss any portion of the complaint it determines is frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. Id. § 1915(e)(2)(B).

         A complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted if it does not “contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). The Supreme Court has explained that “[a] claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Id. Reid's pro se status relaxes, but does not eliminate, the requirement that his complaint contain facially plausible claims. The court must liberally construe a pro se plaintiff's allegations, but it “cannot ignore a clear failure to allege facts” that set forth a cognizable claim. Johnson v. BAC Home Loans Servicing, LP, 867 F.Supp.2d 766, 776 (E.D. N.C. 2011).

         Reid has filed a variety of documents with the court, including:

• A Rule 26(f) Report form from the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina;
• A Magistrate Summons from North Carolina Small Claims Court;
• A Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Affidavit form created by the North Carolina state court system;
• A Complaint for Money Owed form created by the North Carolina ...

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