United States District Court, D. Hawaii
ORDER (1) GRANTING APPLICATION TO PROCEED WITHOUT
PREPAYMENT OF FEES OR COSTS; AND (2) DISMISSING ACTION WITH
LEAVE TO AMEND. 
DERRICK K. WATSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
November 29, 2019, Plaintiff Joyce Yu, proceeding pro
se, filed an application to proceed in forma
pauperis (“IFP Application”), Dkt. No. 2,
along with a civil complaint against Defendant DFS Group, LP,
alleging employment discrimination. Dkt. No. 1. Because the
IFP Application reflects that Yu does not have the ability to
pay the filing fee in this case, the Court GRANTS the IFP
Application. However, because Yu does not allege a claim in
her complaint, this action is DISMISSED with leave to
The IFP Application
courts can authorize the commencement of any suit without
prepayment of fees or security by a person who submits an
affidavit that demonstrates an inability to pay. See
28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1). While Section 1915(a) does not
require a litigant to demonstrate absolute destitution,
Adkins v. E.I. Du Pont de Nemours & Co., 335
U.S. 331, 339 (1948), the applicant must nonetheless show
that he is “unable to pay such fees or give security
therefor, ” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a).
Yu has made the required showing under Section 1915(a).
Yu's IFP Application, Dkt. No. 2, indicates that she is
unemployed and has no income. Further, Yu does not have any
money in a checking or savings account. In light of these
facts, Yu's income falls below the poverty threshold
identified by the Department of Health and Human
Services' (“HHS”) 2019 Poverty Guidelines.
See HHS Poverty Guidelines, available at:
addition, Yu has insufficient assets to provide security. As
a result, the Court GRANTS the IFP Application, Dkt. No. 2.
standard for dismissal of a complaint that fails to state a
claim is the same under 28 U.S.C. Section 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii)
and Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). Barren v. Harrington, 152
F.3d 1193, 1194 (9th Cir. 1998); Jones v.
Schwarzenegger, 723 Fed.Appx. 523, 524 (9th Cir. 2018);
see also Wilhelm v. Rotman, 680 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th
Cir. 2012) (same standard under Section 1915A). The Court
must take the allegations in the complaint as true, excluding
those allegations that are merely conclusory, and if the
complaint does not “contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face, ” the Court must dismiss the
action. Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)
(internal quotation marks omitted); Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). Although the Court
liberally construes a pro se Complaint, Eldridge
v. Block, 832 F.2d 1132, 1137 (9th Cir. 1987), the Court
cannot act as counsel for a pro se litigant, such as
by supplying the essential elements of a claim. Pliler v.
Ford, 542 U.S. 225, 231 (2004); Ivey v. Bd. of
Regents of Univ. of Alaska, 673 F.2d 266, 268 (9th Cir.
Complaint is a pro se form complaint for employment
discrimination. Dkt. No. 1. In the Complaint, Yu marked two
boxes indicating that she was allegedly terminated from her
employment based on her national origin in violation of Title
VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §
2000e-5. In support of her claim, Yu offers only four
sentences worth of factual allegations. The Court concludes
Yu has failed to allege sufficient facts to state a plausible
the allegations are vague, disjointed, and otherwise
unintelligible. Second, Yu has not alleged facts in support
of what is perhaps the most basic element of a Title VII
claim: Membership in a protected class. Coghlan v. Am.
Seafoods Co. LLC, 413 F.3d 1090, 1094 (9th Cir. 2005)
(listing four elements of an employment discrimination claim
under Title VII). As such, the Court cannot “infer more
than the mere possibility of misconduct, ” and
therefore Yu “has alleged-but has not
‘show[n]'-‘that [she] is entitled to
relief.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (quoting
the Complaint fails to allege facts supporting a claim under
any principle of law, the Court dismisses this action.
However, because it may arguably be possible for Yu to allege
one or more plausible claims for relief, the Court will allow
her leave to amend to attempt to do so. In that regard, the
Court will mail Yu a copy of a form complaint for use in a
civil pro se proceeding, such as this one. Should Yu
choose to use the form, she should answer all of
the questions clearly and concisely. More
specifically, Yu should set out each claim under a separate
label or heading. Under each claim, Yu must write short,
plain statements telling the Court: (1) the specific basis of
this Court's jurisdiction; (2) the legal right(s) she
believes were violated; (3) the name of the defendant(s) who
violated those right(s); (4) exactly what each defendant did
or failed to do; (5) how the action or inaction of a
defendant is connected to the violation of Yu's right(s);
(6) what specific injury she suffered because of a
defendant's conduct; and (7) what relief she seeks.
Yu choose to file an amended complaint, she may not
incorporate any part of the original complaint, Dkt. No. 1,
in the amended complaint. Rather, all allegations must be
re-typed or re-written in their entirety or the claim(s) may
be deemed voluntarily dismissed. See Lacey v. Maricopa
Cty., 693 F.3d 896, 928 (9th Cir. 2012) (en
application to proceed in forma pauperis, Dkt. No.
2, is GRANTED. This action is DISMISSED with leave to amend
as set forth herein.
have until February 7, 2020 to file an
amended complaint. The Court cautions Yu that failure
to file an amended complaint by February 7, 2020 may result
in the ...