United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
September 16, 2005.
ABDUL IDEEN, Plaintiff,
JEFFERY BEARD, et al., Defendants.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: FRANCIS CAIAZZA, Chief Magistrate Judge
Before the Court for resolution is the Plaintiff's motion for
the appointment of counsel filed at document number seven, (Doc.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has
set out the standards to be considered by district courts when
responding to a request for counsel pursuant to the provisions of
28 U.S.C. Section 1915(d). In Tabron v. Grace, 6 F.3d 147 (3d
Cir. 1993), the court acknowledged that district courts have no
authority to compel counsel to represent an indigent civil
litigant. Id. at 157 n. 7. In its' opinion, the Court also
recognized that when "[a]n indigent Plaintiff with a claim of
arguable merit is incapable of presenting his or her case,
serious consideration should be given to appointing counsel."
Id. at 156. The opinion likewise addressed the practical
constraints confronted by the district courts regarding the appointment of counsel, which include the ever-growing number of
prisoner civil rights actions filed each year in the federal
courts, the lack of funding to pay appointed counsel and the
limited supply of competent lawyers who are willing to undertake
such representation without compensation. Id. at 157.
The Court then proceeded to announce a series of factors which
the trial court should consider and apply in ruling upon a motion
for the appointment of counsel.
In this action the Plaintiff alleges that he as been physically
and mentally abused by prisoner personell. A review of the
history of this case reveals that:
(1) the particular legal issues are not difficult;
(2) the degree of need for a factual investigation is
minimal and can be adequately pursued by the
(3) there appears to be no particular problem
confronting the Plaintiff in pursuit of his claim;
(4) the claim of the plaintiff will not require
extensive or complicated discovery;
(5) the case will not be essentially decided by
credibility issues; and,
(6) the case may require testimony from expert
The court has weighed the Tabron factors and although it
recognizes that the case may require expert testimony, the
Plaintiff's request for appointment of counsel is denied, without prejudice to the Plaintiff to file a similar motion if it
later becomes necessary for him to obtain the services of an
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the parties are allowed ten (10)
days from this date to appeal this order to a district judge
pursuant to Rule 72.1.3(B) of the Local Rules for Magistrates.
Failure to appeal within ten (10) days may constitute waiver of
the right to appeal.
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