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Robbins v. Switzer

January 7, 1997

MARTIN D. ROBBINS,

PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

CLARENCE SWITZER, ET AL.,

DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.

MARTIN D. ROBBINS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

MICHAEL R. CLOUD, ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.

MARTIN D. ROBBINS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

ORANGE COUNTY COURT, ET AL., DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.

MARTIN D. ROBBINS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

G.L. HOLMES, ET AL.,

DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.

MARTIN D. ROBBINS,

PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

C.R. HALL, ET AL.,

DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division.

No. NA 95-122-C B/H Sarah Evans Barker, Chief Judge. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division. No. NA 95-142-C R/H Gene E. Brooks, Judge. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division. No. NA 96-36-C R/H Gene E. Brooks, Judge. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division. No. NA 96-41-C R/H S. Hugh Dillin, Judge. Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Terre Haute Division. No. TH 96-170-C R/H Gene E. Brooks, Judge.

Before COFFEY, FLAUM, and EASTERBROOK, Circuit Judges.

EASTERBROOK, Circuit Judge.

SUBMITTED DECEMBER 6, 1996

DECIDED JANUARY 7, 1997

While in state prison, Martin Robbins filed several lawsuits under 42 U.S.C. sec. 1983. Some were dismissed because the pleadings were inscrutable, and Robbins did not respond to judicial orders calling for clarity. Other complaints were clear enough to reveal that the suits are barred by judicial or prosecutorial immunity, or the principle of Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477 (1994), or fail to state claims on which relief may be granted. Robbins appealed five of his defeats. We must decide how the Prison Litigation Reform Act, Title VIII of Pub. L. 104-134, 110 Stat. 1321 (effective April 26, 1996) ("the Act"), applies to cases in which a person who is imprisoned at the time of the appeals is released before the full filing and docket fees have been paid.

Under 28 U.S.C. sec. 1915(a)(2), as amended by the Act,

A prisoner seeking to bring a civil action or appeal a judgment in a civil action or proceeding without prepayment of fees or security therefor, in addition to filing the affidavit filed under paragraph (1), shall submit a certified copy of the trust fund account statement (or institutional equivalent) for the prisoner for the 6-month period immediately preceding the filing of the complaint or notice of appeal, obtained from the appropriate official of each prison at which the prisoner is or was confined.

A prisoner who begins a civil action or files an appeal is not entitled to proceed without prepayment, a privilege sec. 1915(a)(1) extends to non-prisoners. Under sec. 1915(b):

(1) Notwithstanding subsection (a), if a prisoner brings a civil action or files an appeal in forma pauperis, the prisoner shall be required to pay the full amount of a filing fee. The court shall assess and, when funds exist, collect, as a partial payment of any court fees required by law, an initial partial filing fee of 20 percent of the greater of

(A) the average monthly deposits to the prisoner's account; or

(B) the average monthly balance in the prisoner's account for the 6-month period immediately preceding the filing of the complaint or notice of appeal.

(2) After payment of the initial partial filing fee, the prisoner shall be required to make monthly payments of 20 percent of the preceding month's income credited to the prisoner's account. The agency having custody of the prisoner shall forward payments from the prisoner's account to the clerk of the court ...


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