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Case 1:13-cv-01161-JLT Document 3 Filed 07/30/13 Page 1 of 4

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

















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CHAI JOHNNY XIONG,





Plaintiff,

v.

CAROLYN W. COLVIN,
Acting Commissioner of Social Security,






Defendant.



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Case No.: 1:13-cv-01161 - JLT

ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION TO
PROCEED INFORMA PAUPERIS

(Doc. 2)

ORDER DIRECTING CLERK TO ISSUE
SUMMONS AND SOCIAL SECURITY CASE
DOCUMENTS

ORDER DIRECTING UNITED STATES
MARSHAL FOR SERVICE OF COMPLAINT




Chang Johnny Xiong seeks to proceed in forma pauperis with an action seeking judicial review

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of the administrative decision denying her application for Social Security benefits. Pending before the

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Court are the complaint (Doc. 1) and application to proceed in forma pauperis (Doc. 2) filed by

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Plaintiff on July 25, 2013.

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I. MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS

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The Court may authorize the commencement of an action without prepayment of fees “but a

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person who submits an affidavit that includes a statement of all assets such person . . . possesses [and]

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that the person is unable to pay such fees or give security therefor.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). The Court

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has reviewed the application and has determined it satisfies the requirements of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a).

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Therefore, Plaintiff’s motion to proceed in forma pauperis is GRANTED.



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Case 1:13-cv-01161-JLT Document 3 Filed 07/30/13 Page 2 of 4



II.

SCREENING REQUIREMENT

When an individual seeks to proceed in forma pauperis, the Court is required to review the

complaint and shall dismiss a complaint, or portion of the complaint, if it is “frivolous, malicious or

fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; or . . . seeks monetary relief from a defendant

who is immune from such relief.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b); 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). A claim is

frivolous “when the facts alleged rise to the level of the irrational or the wholly incredible, whether or

not there are judicially noticeable facts available to contradict them.” Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S.

25, 32-33 (1992).

III. PLEADING STANDARDS

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General rules for pleading complaints are governed by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. A

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pleading must include a statement affirming the court’s jurisdiction, “a short and plain statement of the

claim showing the pleader is entitled to relief; and . . . a demand for the relief sought, which may

include relief in the alternative or different types of relief.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a).

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A complaint must give fair notice and state the elements of the plaintiff’s claim in a plain and

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succinct manner. Jones v. Cmty Redevelopment Agency, 733 F.2d 646, 649 (9th Cir. 1984). The

purpose of the complaint is to give the defendant fair notice of the claims against him, and the grounds

upon which the complaint stands. Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N.A., 534 U.S. 506, 512 (2002). The

Supreme Court noted,

Rule 8 does not require detailed factual allegations, but it demands more than an
unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me accusation. A pleading that offers
labels and conclusions or a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will
not do. Nor does a complaint suffice if it tenders naked assertions devoid of further
factual enhancement.



Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678-79 (2009) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).

Conclusory and vague allegations do not support a cause of action. Ivey v. Board of Regents, 673 F.2d

266, 268 (9th Cir. 1982). The Court clarified further,

[A] complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to “state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face.” [Citation]. A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference
that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged. [Citation]. The plausibility
standard is not akin to a “probability requirement,” but it asks for more than a sheer

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Case 1:13-cv-01161-JLT Document 3 Filed 07/30/13 Page 3 of 4



possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully. [Citation]. Where a complaint pleads
facts that are “merely consistent with” a defendant’s liability, it “stops short of the line
between possibility and plausibility of ‘entitlement to relief.’


Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (citations omitted). When factual allegations are well-pled, a court should

assume the truth and determine whether the facts would make the plaintiff entitled to relief; conclusions

in the pleading are not entitled to the same assumption of truth. Id. The Court may grant leave to

amend a complaint to the extent deficiencies of the complaint can be cured by amendment. Lopez v.

Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1127-28 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc).

IV. DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS



Here, Plaintiff’s complaint indicates the application and appeal for Social Security benefits

have been denied, and he seeks review of the decision by the Commissioner of Social Security

denying benefits. (Doc. 1 at 1-2). The Court has jurisdiction over such claims pursuant to 42 U.S.C.

§ 405(g), which provides in relevant part:

Any individual, after any final decision of the Commissioner made after a hearing to
which he was a party, irrespective of the amount in controversy, may obtain a review of
such decision by a civil action commenced within sixty days after the mailing to him of
such decision or within such further time as the Commissioner may allow. Such action
shall be brought in the district court of the United States for the judicial district in
which the plaintiff resides, or has his principal place of business . . . The court shall
have power to enter, upon the pleadings and transcript of the record, a judgment
affirming, modifying, or reversing the decision of the Commissioner of Social Security,
with or without remanding the cause for a rehearing.


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Id. Except as provided by statute, “[n]o findings of fact or decision of the Commissioner shall be

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reviewed by any person, tribunal, or governmental agency.” 42 U.S.C. § 405(h). The Supreme Court

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noted the purpose of the legislation was “to forestall repetitive or belated litigation of stale eligibility

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claims.” Califano v. Sanders, 430 U.S. 99, 108 (1977). Plaintiff asserts the Appeals Council denied a

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request for review on April 11, 2013, at which time the decision of the administrative law judge

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became the decision of the Commissioner. (Doc. 1 at 2). Plaintiff’s counsel requested an extension of

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time to initiate a civil action, which was granted on July 20, 2013. Id. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s

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complaint was to be filed no later than August 23, 2013. Because Plaintiff seeks timely review of the

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decision to deny benefits, the Court has jurisdiction over the matter pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 405(g).

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///



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Case 1:13-cv-01161-JLT Document 3 Filed 07/30/13 Page 4 of 4



V. CONCLUSION AND ORDER



Plaintiff’s complaint states a cognizable claim for review of the administrative decision

denying Social Security benefits. Based upon the foregoing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED:

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Plaintiff’s motion to proceed in forma pauperis (Doc. 2) is GRANTED;

The Clerk of Court is DIRECTED to issue summons as to the defendant, Carolyn W.

Colvin, Acting Commissioner of Social Security;

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The Clerk of Court is DIRECTED to issue and serve Plaintiff with Social Security Case

Documents, including the Scheduling Order, Order regarding Consent, the Consent

Form, and USM-285 Forms; and

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The U.S. Marshal is DIRECTED to serve a copy of the complaint, summons, and this

order upon the defendant as directed by Plaintiff in the USM Forms.

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IT IS SO ORDERED.

Dated: July 30, 2013





/s/ Jennifer L. Thurston
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

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