United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
NATHAN R. HOYE, Plaintiff,
DEPUTY DIALESADRO, et al., Defendants.
ORDER OF COURT
Barry Fischer, United States District Judge.
filed two lawsuits relating to the time period when Plaintiff
was housed in SCI-Greene's RHU, Civil Action No.
2:17-cv-00009 and Civil Action 2:17-cv-00019 . Because the
two lawsuits involved common facts relating to the same time
period, the Court consolidated Civil Action No. Civil Action
2:17-cv-00019 with Civil Action No. 2:17-cv-00009. (ECF No.
10). It was further Ordered that Plaintiff was to file an
Amended Complaint on or before May 12, 2017. Plaintiff was
advised that failure to file an Amended Complaint as ordered,
without leave for an extension of time, shall result in
dismissal of this case. To date, Plaintiff has neither filed
an Amended Complaint nor has he sought an extension of time
in which to do so.
district court has inherent power to dismiss a complaint,
sua sponte, under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
41(b) for a plaintiff's failure to comply with an order
of court. Adams v. Trustees of New Jersey Brewery
Employees' Pension Trust Fund, 29 F.3d 863, 871 (3d
Cir. 1994) (“The Supreme Court affirmed, stating that a
court could dismiss sua sponte under Rule
41(b).”); Guyer v. Beard, 907 F.2d 1424, 1429
(3d Cir. 1990). Furthermore, a court's decision to
dismiss for failure to prosecute is committed to the
court's sound discretion. See Collinsgru v. Palmyra
Bd. of Educ., 161 F.3d 225, 230 (3d Cir. 1998)
(“We review for abuse of discretion a district
court's dismissal for failure to prosecute pursuant to
Rule 41(b).”), abrogated on other grounds
by Winkelman ex rel. Winkelman v. Parma City School
Dist., 550 U.S. 516 (2007). In exercising that
discretion, a district court should, to the extent
applicable, consider the six factors identified in Poulis
v. State Farm Fire and Casualty Co., 747 F.2d 868 (3d
Cir. 1984), when it levies the sanction of dismissal of an
action for failure to obey discovery schedules, failure to
prosecute, or to comply with other procedural rules.
Harris v. City of Philadelphia, 47 F.3d 1311, 1330
n.18 (3d Cir. 1995).
Poulis, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals set forth
the following six factors to be weighed in considering
whether dismissal is proper:
(1) the extent of the party's personal responsibility;
(2) the prejudice to the adversary caused by the failure to
meet scheduling orders and respond to discovery; (3) a
history of dilatoriness; (4) whether the conduct of the party
or the attorney was willful or in bad faith; (5) the
effectiveness of sanctions other than dismissal, which
entails an analysis of alternative sanctions; and (6) the
meritoriousness of the claim or defense.
Id. at 868 (emphasis omitted). These factors must be
balanced in determining whether dismissal is an appropriate
sanction, although not all need to weigh in favor of
dismissal before dismissal is warranted. Hicks v.
Feeney, 850 F.2d 152 (3d Cir. 1988). Consideration of
these factors follows.
The extent of the party's personal
is proceeding in this matter pro se. There is no
indication that he failed to receive the order directing him
to file an Amended Complaint. The responsibility for his
failure to comply is Plaintiff's alone.
Prejudice to the adversary.
Poulis, prejudice was found to exist where the
adversary was required to prepare and file motions to compel
answers to interrogatories. In this case, Defendants have not
yet been required to respond to the Complaint and therefore
have not suffered specific prejudice other than that caused
by general delay.
A history of dilatoriness.
has made no effort to move this case forward and has ignored
the Court's Order dated April 12, 2017. (ECF No. 10).
This is sufficient evidence, in the Court's view, to
indicate that Plaintiff does not intend to proceed with this
Whether the party's conduct was willful or in bad
is no indication on this record that Plaintiff's failure
was the result of any excusable neglect. Thus, the conclusion