Case No. C16-1877JLR.

SUSAN CHEN, et al., Plaintiffs, v. NATALIE D'AMICO, Defendant.

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle.

Editors Note
Applicable Law: 28 U.S.C. § 1331
Cause: 28 U.S.C. § 1331 Federal Question: Other Civil Rights
Nature of Suit: 440 Civil Rights: Other
Source: PACER

Attorney(s) appearing for the Case

Susan Chen, Plaintiff, Pro Se.

Naixiang Lian, Plaintiff, Pro Se.


JAMES L. ROBART, District Judge.

Before the court is Plaintiff Susan Chen's motion to appoint counsel.1 (Mot. (Dkt. # 10).) Ms. Chen is proceeding pro se. (Compl. (Dkt. # 6).) The District has implemented a plan for court-appointed representation of civil rights litigants. The plan requires the court to assess a plaintiff's case before forwarding it to the Pro Bono Screening Committee for further review and possible appointment of pro bono counsel. See General Order, August 1, 2010, Section 3(c) (In re Amended Plan for the Representation of Pro Se Litigants in Civil Rights Actions). In its initial assessment, the court evaluates the case to determine that it is not frivolous and that the plaintiff is financially eligible. Id. Ms. Chen's submissions satisfy the court that there is an adequate basis to refer her case to the Screening Committee. (See Mot.; Fin. Aff. (Dkt. # 11); Compl.)

Accordingly, the court DIRECTS the Clerk to forward to the Screening Committee Ms. Chen's complaint (Dkt. # 6), her motion for court-appointed counsel (Dkt. # 10), and a copy of this order. See General Order, August 1, 2010, Section 3(c). The court DIRECTS the Screening Committee to review the case and make a recommendation to the court in accordance with the District's pro bono plan and the rules for the pro bono panel on or before May 8, 2017. The court also DIRECTS the Clerk to renote Ms. Chen's motion to appoint counsel (Dkt. # 10) for May 8, 2017, pending the Screening Committee's recommendation. See General Order, August 1, 2010, Section 3(f). Finally, the court DENIES Plaintiffs' joint motion to appoint counsel (Dkt. # 8).


1. On March 10, 2017, Ms. Chen and her co-plaintiff, Naixiang Lian, filed a joint motion to appoint counsel. (1st Mot. (Dkt. # 8).) The court determined that it could not fully assess whether it should forward Plaintiffs' motion to the Pro Bono Screening Committee for further review because Plaintiffs are not proceeding in forma pauperis and had not attached to their motion a completed copy of an affidavit of financial status. (3/29/17 Order at 2.) The court directed Plaintiffs to file an affidavit detailing their financial statuses no later than 14 days after the entry of the court's order. (Id.) On April 12, 2017, Ms. Chen filed a financial affidavit detailing her financial status (see Fin. Aff.) and a second motion to appoint counsel (see Mot.). Ms. Chen states that Mr. Lian did not provide a financial affidavit and "ask[s] the court to appoint counsel for her specifically." (Mot. at 2.) Accordingly, the court construes Ms. Chen's motion to appoint counsel as superseding the earlier motion and denies the earlier motion.


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