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Nesbit v. Oregon Employment Dept Collections Unit

United States District Court, D. Oregon

July 25, 2017

KEVIN NESBIT, Plaintiff,
v.
OREGON EMPLOYMENT DEPT COLLECTIONS UNIT, Defendant.

          Kevin Nesbit Plaintiff Pro Se

          OPINION & ORDER

          MARCO A. HERNÁNDEZ, United States District Judge

         Pro se Plaintiff Kevin Nesbit brings this action against the Oregon Employment Department Collections Unit (OED). Plaintiff moves to proceed in forma pauperis (IFP) and he moves for appointment of counsel. While Plaintiff's IFP application lacks the requisite detail for this Court to determine whether Plaintiff qualifies, the Court grants the motion for the limited purpose of this initial review of Plaintiff's complaint. The Court dismisses the complaint and denies Plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel.

         STANDARDS

         A complaint filed in forma pauperis may be dismissed at any time, including before service of process, if the court determines that:

(B) the action or appeal-
(i) is frivolous or malicious;
(ii) fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or
(iii) seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief.

28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2); see also Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 324 (1989) (sua sponte dismissals under section 1915 “spare prospective defendants the inconvenience and expense of answering” complaints which are “frivolous, malicious, or repetitive”); Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126 n.7 (9th Cir. 2000) (section 1915(e) applies to all in forma pauperis complaints, not just those filed by inmates). A complaint is frivolous “where it lacks an arguable basis in law or in fact.” Neitzke, 490 U.S. at 325; Jackson v. State of Ariz., 885 F.2d 639, 640 (9th Cir. 1989).

         As the Ninth Circuit has instructed, however, courts must “continue to construe pro se filings liberally.” Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 342 (9th Cir. 2010). A pro se complaint “‘must be held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.'” Id. (quoting Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (per curiam)). A pro se litigant will be given leave to amend his or her complaint unless it is clear that the deficiencies of the complaint cannot be cured by amendment. Lopez, 203 F.3d at 1130-31.

         DISCUSSION

         I. Allegations

         To the best of this Court's understanding, Plaintiff's claim is that employees of the OED have slandered and defamed him with their “actions and unprofessional misconduct.” Compl., ECF 1. The complaint suggests that OED employees accused Plaintiff of improperly collecting unemployment benefits and OED has ...


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