United States District Court, N.D. New York
BEY, PLAINTIFF, PRO SE
Andrew T. Baxter U.S. Magistrate Judge.
Clerk has sent to the court a complaint filed by pro se
plaintiff Fritz Bey. (Dkt. No. 1). Plaintiff Bey has also
filed an application to proceed in forma pauperis
(“IFP”) (Dkt. No. 2). Plaintiff purports to bring
this action pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 241, 242, 246.
(Complaint (“Compl.”) ¶ II(A)). Plaintiff
also appears to ask this court, inter alia, to enjoin a state
court criminal action against him, and grant him damages
against defendants Philip Milano and Brian Haller, two police
officers, and defendant Deborah J. Young,
“Judge.” (Compl. ¶ IV; Exhibit 1 at CM/ECF
order to proceed IFP in federal court, the court must be
satisfied by plaintiff's affidavit that he is unable to
pay the “cost of these proceedings.” (Dkt. No. 2
at 1); 28 U.S.C. § 1915. “‘The purpose of 28
U.S.C. 1915 is to ensure that litigants will not be deprived
of access to the judicial system because of their financial
circumstances.'” Deep v. Bowles, No.
1:09-MC-73, 2010 WL 11526763, at *1 (N.D.N.Y. Mar. 19, 2010)
(quoting Monti v. McKeon, 600 F.Supp. 112, 114 (D.
Conn. 1984) (citing Harlem River Consumers Co-op, Inc. v.
Associated Grocers of Harlem, Inc., 71 F.R.D. 93, 96
(S.D.N.Y. 1976)). Whether to grant an application to proceed
IFP rests within the sound discretion of the court.
Id. (citing Monti, 600 F.Supp. at 113).
this threshold showing, a plaintiff must demonstrate
“‘that paying such fees would constitute a
serious hardship on the plaintiff, not that such payment
would render plaintiff destitute.'” Tucker v.
United States, 142 Fed.Cl. 697, 707 (Fed. Cir. 2019)
(quoting Fiebelkorn, 77 Fed.Cl. at 62);
Deep, 2010 WL 11526763, at *1 (quoting
Fiebelkorn v. U.S., 77 Fed.Cl. at 62 (citing
Adkins v. E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., 335 U.S.
331, 339 (1948)). When considering a motion filed pursuant to
§ 1915(a), “‘[t]he only determination to be
made by the court . . . is whether the statements in the
affidavit satisfy the requirement of poverty.'”
Martinez v. Kristi Kleaners, Inc., 364 F.3d 1305,
1307 (11th Cir. 2004) (quoting Watson v.
Ault, 525 F.2d 886, 891 (11th Cir. 1976)) (alteration in
original). “Such an affidavit will be held sufficient
if it represents that the litigant, because of his poverty,
is unable to pay for the court fees and costs, and to support
and provide necessities for himself and his
dependents.” Id. The Second Circuit has stated
that, “‘[n]o party must be made to choose between
abandoning a potential meritorious claim or foregoing the
necessities of life.'” Id. (quoting
Potnick v. Eastern State Hosp., 701 F.2d
243, 244 (2d Cir. 1983) (citing Adkins, 335 U.S. at
case, plaintiff has chosen not to properly answer any of the
questions in the form-application to proceed IFP. The first
question asks whether plaintiff is incarcerated. (Dkt. No. 2
¶ 1). Plaintiff has answered “N/A.” The
court assumes that this notation indicates that plaintiff
believes that the answer to this question is “not
applicable.” If plaintiff were incarcerated, he would
have to submit his prison account statements, together with
an authorization form, allowing the court to deduct the
partial payment fee from his facility account. If plaintiff
is no longer incarcerated, he may proceed without submitting
such documents and without paying a partial fee. Thus,
the question on the IFP application regarding current
incarceration is applicable and should be answered.
has also answered “N/A” to whether he is
employed, and if so, how much money he makes, and he has
answered “no” to the question asking whether he
received money from “any other” listed sources in
the past 12 months. (Dkt. No. 2 ¶¶ 2, 3). Plaintiff
has answered “N/A” to the question asking whether
he has money in a checking or savings account, and if so, how
much money he has. (Dkt. No. 2 ¶ 4). The form also asks
whether the plaintiff has any assets of value, debts,
expenses, or financial obligations. (Dkt. No. 2 ¶¶
5, 6, 8). To the first two paragraphs, plaintiff states:
The constitution states that the right of the people to be
secure in their persons papers and effects shall not be
violated. Meaning we have the right to privacy. This
information is irrelevant in regards to the courts proceeding
Pro Bono. HR 25 as of March 22, 2018 stated that the USD has
lost 96% of value. Meaning I cannot pay and [sic] fee in USD.
(Compl. ¶¶ 5, 6). In response to the question
regarding financial obligations, plaintiff states:
All debts belong to the United States Corporation (28 U.S.C.
3002(15)(A)) see title 12 U.S.C. 411.
has essentially failed to properly answer most, if not all,
of the questions in the IFP application, and it appears that
he has done so intentionally. Clearly, he wishes this court
to allow him to proceed without payment of fees, but refuses
to “demonstrate” that he is entitled to do so as
the law requires. He wishes to have the court adjudicate his
claims, but refuses to abide by the rules which govern the
process. Plaintiff's responses leave this court unable to
determine whether plaintiff is financially eligible to
proceed IFP. Because the ...