UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
June 20, 2012
THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, DEFENDANT.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: John G. Koeltl, District Judge:
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
The Court has received the attached correspondence from the plaintiff, which it forwards to the parties. The plaintiff requests that the Court appoint pro bono counsel in her case. However, the Court cannot determine whether the necessary showing for appointment of counsel has been met. The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has articulated factors that should guide the Court's discretion to appoint counsel to represent an indigent civil litigant under 28 U.S.C. § 1915. See Hodge v. Police Officers, 802 F.2d 58, 61-62 (2d Cir. 1986); Jackson v. Moscicki, No. 99 Civ. 2427 (JGK), 2000 WL 511642, at *4 (S.D.N.Y. Apr. 27, 2000). For the Court to order the appointment of counsel, the petitioner must, as a threshold matter, demonstrate that her claim has substance or a likelihood of success on the merits. See Hodge, 802 F.2d at 60-61. Only then can the Court consider the other factors appropriate to determination of whether counsel should be appointed: "plaintiff's ability to obtain representation independently, and her ability to handle the case without assitance in the light of the required factual investigation,, the complexity of the legal issues, and the need for expertly conducted cross-examination to test veracity." Cooper v. A. Sargenti Co., Inc., 877 F.2d 170, 172 (2d Cir. 1989). The plaintiff has not yet made such a showing. The plaintiff's application for the Court to appoint counsel is therefore denied without prejudice for failure to make the required showing at this time.
The sixty-day stay imposed by the Court's Order of April 17, 2012 has now expired. The plaintiff informs the Court that she is now proceeding pro se. The plaintiff should advise the Pro Se Office of her address and a phone number at which she can be reached, so that papers can be served directly on her.
[Editor's Note: Attachment unavailable]
© 1992-2012 VersusLaw Inc.