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Carton v. Carroll Ventures Inc.

United States District Court, D. New Mexico

February 3, 2017

ALYSSA CARTON, Plaintiff,
v.
CARROLL VENTURES, INC., Defendant.

          ORDER ADDRESSING IN FORMA PAUPERIS MOTIONS

          M. CHRISTINA ARMIJO CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         THIS MATTER comes before the Court on Plaintiff's Applications to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (“IFP Motions”) filed in the following cases:

1:17-cv-00037-KK-SCY

Carton v. Carroll Ventures Inc.

1:17-cv-00038-KBM-WPL

Carton v. Cole MT Albuquerque (San Mateo) NM LLC

1:17-cv-00039-SCY-LF

Carton v. Courtyard NM LLC

1:17-cv-00040-KK-SCY

Carton v. HDY LLC

1:17-cv-00041-SCY-WPL

Carton v. Roshni

1:17-cv-00042-SCY-WPL

Carton v. Karasek, et al.

1:17-cv-00043-SCY-KBM

Carton v. Laxmi Management LLC

1:17-cv-00044-LF-KK

Carton v. LBC Company, LLC

1:17-cv-00045-KBM-LF

Carton v. Mega Pie, LLC

1:17-cv-00046-SCY-KBM

Carton v. San Mateo/Indian School, Inc.

1:17-cv-00047-KK-WPL

Carton v. Spilca Nicolae & Mariana

1:17-cv-00048-WPL-SCY

Carton v. Spirit Master Funding, LLC

1:17-cv-00049-KK-KBM

Carton v. TMX 5200 Central LLC

1:17-cv-00057-WPL-KK

Carton v. 6501 Lomas LLC

1:17-cv-00058-SCY-KK

Carton v. Autozone Stores LLC

1:17-cv-00059-WPL-KBM

Carton v. Bio-Medical Applications of N.M., Inc.

1:17-cv-00060-KK-WPL

Carton v. Blakes Lotaburger, LLC

1:17-cv-00061-KBM-LF

Carton v. Cimarron Holdings, LLC

1:17-cv-00063-WPL-SCY

Carton v. Cole AB Albuquerque NM, LLC

1:17-cv-00064-LF-WPL

Carton v. Cox and Allen, LLC

1:17-cv-00065-GBW-KK

Carton v. Diamond Shamrock Stations, Inc.

1:17-cv-00066-KK-KBM

Carton v. East Lomas, Partnership

1:17-cv-00067-KK-KBM

Carton v. El Mirador, Inc.

1:17-cv-00068-KK-LF

Carton v. ESS WCOT Owner, LLC

1:17-cv-00069-LF-KK

Carton v. Goatcher Family, LTD

1:17-cv-00070-WPL-KK

Carton v. Marky, et al

1:17-cv-00071-SCY-LAM

Carton v. Lunnon Properties, LLC

1:17-cv-00073-WPL-SCY

Carton v. Market Center East Retail Property, Inc.

1:17-cv-00074-WPL-SCY

Carton v. McDonald's Corporation

1:17-cv-00075-WPL-CG

Carton v. Miller Family Real Estate, LLC

1:17-cv-00076-LF-WPL

Carton v. MVD Specialists, LLC

1:17-cv-00077-KK-WPL

Carton v. Pacific Realty, CO

1:17-cv-00078-WPL-LF

Carton v. Q Market Center, LLC

1:17-cv-00080-LF-KK

Carton v. Realty Income, Corporation

1:17-cv-00082-KK-KBM

Carton v. Brunetto et al

1:17-cv-00083-LF-WPL

Carton v. Southwest Capital Projects, LLC

1:17-cv-00084-SCY-KBM

Carton v. Westland Properties, LLC

1:17-cv-00085-GJF-KBM

Carton v. Zia Trust, Inc.

1:17-cv-00151-KK-WPL

Carton v. 5220 Eubank, LLC

1:17-cv-00153-WPL-KK

Carton v. B Investments, LLC

1:17-cv-00154-GBW-KK

Carton v. Fair Plaza, Inc

1:17-cv-00156-SCY-LF

Carton v. Hayman Nurseries, LLC

1:17-cv-00158-KBM-SCY

Carton v. Holiday Bowl, Inc.

1:17-cv-00159-SMV-LF

Carton v. Kawips New Mexico, LLC

1:17-cv-00160-GJF-LF

Carton v. LNU, et al

1:17-cv-00161-LF-KBM

Carton v. M & E New Mexico Property, LLC

1:17-cv-00162-WPL-LF

Carton v. Monarch Land, LLC

1:17-cv-00163-KK-WPL

Carton v. Montgomery-Juan Tabo Properties, LLC

1:17-cv-00164-SCY-WPL

Carton v. New Mexico Bank & Trust

1:17-cv-00165-WPL-LF

Carton v. Pacific Bistro Partnership

1:17-cv-00166-KBM-KK

Carton v. Pizza Hut of America LLC

1:17-cv-00167-SCY-LF

Carton v. Jaramillo, et al

1:17-cv-00168-SCY-KBM

Carton v. Garcia, et al.

1:17-cv-00169-KBM-SCY

Carton v. Smith's Food and Drug Centers, Inc.

1:17-cv-00170-KBM-KK

Carton v. Starlight Investments, LLC

1:17-cv-00171-KK-SCY

Carton v. LNU, et al.

1:17-cv-00172-LF-SCY

Carton v. McCollum, et al.

1:17-cv-00173-LF-SCY

Carton v. Three J's, Limited Partnership

1:17-cv-00174-KK-KBM

Carton v. Tulsi Group, LLC

1:17-cv-00175-KK-SCY

Carton v. LNU, et al.

         Joinder of Cases for Limited Purpose

         Attorney Sharon Pomeranz has filed 60 cases on behalf of Plaintiff Alyssa Carton against different defendants alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). With the exception of paragraph 31 of each complaint (which identifies the specific alleged violations at a defendant's premises), the complaints are identical. In each case, Plaintiff Carton seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis (IFP).

         Rule 42 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that “[i]f actions before the court involve a common issue of law or fact, ” the court may “join for hearing and trial any or all matters at issue in the actions.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 42(a)(1). To promote efficiency and economy and to avoid conflicting decisions, I have concluded that these cases, listed above, should be joined for the sole purpose of addressing the IFP motions.

         A magistrate judge has authority only to grant an IFP motion. As this District's Chief Judge, I will therefore join the above cases before me for the sole purpose of addressing the IFP motions. The currently assigned magistrate judges will thereafter conduct further proceedings in each case, either as the presiding trial judge with consent of the parties or as the pretrial magistrate judge.

         Fees

         Plaintiff is obligated to pay the fee for instituting each of the civil actions listed above, including those cases where the Court is allowing Plaintiff to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915. Section 1915(a) does not permit litigants to avoid payment of fees; only prepayment of fees may be excused. See Brown v. Eppler, 725 F.3d 1221, 1331 (10th Cir. 2013) (“all § 1915(a) does for any litigant is excuse the pre-payment of fees”). The fee for instituting any civil action, suit or proceeding in this Court is $400.00, which is comprised of the $350.00 filing fee, see 28 U.S.C. 1914(a), and a $50.00 administrative fee. Plaintiff is therefore obligated to pay the Court $24, 000.00 in fees for instituting the 60 cases listed above.

         Applications to Proceed In Forma Pauperis

         The IFP Motions Plaintiff has filed in these cases are essentially identical and show: (i) her total monthly income is $2, 500.00; (ii) her total monthly expenses are $2, 295.00; (iii) she has $1, 900.00 in cash; (iv) she has $1, 900.00 in a checking account; and (v) she is unemployed.

         Each IFP Motion shows her sources of income are $2, 500.00 from employment, $600.00 from Disability, and $1, 900.00 from SSDI Veterans Funds, for a total of $5, 000.00. Plaintiff indicates that her total monthly income is $2, 500.00. It appears that the $2, 500.00 amount she listed as coming from “Employment” is a typographical error because Plaintiff indicates that she has no employer and is unable to work. If the $2, 500.00 employment amount is not a typographical error, Plaintiff shall, within 21 days of entry of this Order, file a notice indicating so.

         Proceedings in forma pauperis

         The statute for proceedings in forma pauperis, 28 U.S.C. ยง 1915(a), provides that the Court may authorize the commencement of any suit without prepayment of fees by a person who submits an affidavit that includes a statement of all ...


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