United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
Anthony P. Patti Magistrate Judge.
ORDER ADOPTING MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
RECOMMENDATION, OVERRULING PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTIONS,
GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS TO DISMISS AND FOR SUMMARY
JUDGMENT, AND DISMISSING CASE
M. LAWSON United States District Judge.
Sharon Denise Jones filed a lengthy complaint that sought to
challenge certain efforts by the defendants to collect
delinquent student loans that the plaintiff incurred while
attending the Wayne State University Law School in Detroit,
Michigan. The Court referred this case to Magistrate Judge
Anthony P. Patti for pretrial management. Thereafter, the
defendants filed various motions to dismiss. Judge Patti
filed a report recommending that the motions be denied
without prejudice and the plaintiff be given an opportunity
to file an amended complaint, so that she could cure several
defects in her pleading, which the magistrate judge outlined
in detail. The plaintiff filed an amended complaint. The
defendants once again responded with motions to dismiss.
Defendants Wayne State University and April Ewing-Miles filed
a motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(6). Defendants United States Department of Education
and Arne Duncan filed a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6)
and for summary judgment under Rule 56; and defendant Pioneer
Credit Recovery, Inc. filed a motion to dismiss under Rule
Patti filed a report on February 12, 2017 recommending that
all the motions be granted and the plaintiff be denied
another opportunity to amend her complaint further. The
report, which runs 51 pages, discusses the 20-page amended
complaint in great detail. The amended complaint contains a
few facts, several conculsory statements, and some citations
of legal authority. But it does not state any causes of
action specifically, and it is not divided into counts. Nor
does it allege particularized wrongdoing against individual
magistrate judge bravely attempted to deconstruct the
statements in the amended complaint and map them onto
possible causes of action. He understood the plaintiff to be
complaining about the involuntary application of certain of
her tax refunds to her student loan obligations, her
perceived lack of an effective forum to challenge the fact
and amount of the debt, and that the defendants waited too
long to enforce the debt. With generous indulgence, he
identified possible causes of action, and then explained why
the facts he could extract from the amended complaint would
not support those potential claims. Ultimately, the
magistrate judge concluded that the amended complaint failed
to state any viable claims, and allowing plaintiff yet
another chance to amend her complaint would be futile.
plaintiff filed objections on February 27, 2017. But the
objections do not take issue with any specific finding by the
magistrate judge. Instead, the plaintiff acknowledges that
she is “medically unable to plead and litigate her
claims to a standard that would satisfy the court.” She
then asks the Court to “allow her to provide
documentation of those disabilities from medical physicians,
and appoint to Plaintiff counsel rather than dismiss the
case.” She also asks “de novo review of the
Report and Recommendation.”
Court sees no basis to appoint counsel.
“‘[A]ppointment of counsel in a civil case is . .
. a matter within the discretion of the court. It is a
privilege not a right.'” Childs v.
Pellegrin, 822 F.2d 1382, 1384 (6th Cir. 1987) (quoting
United States v. Madden, 352 F.2d 792, 793 (9th Cir.
1965)). The plaintiff has offered no convincing reason why
the Court should exercise its discretionary power at this
time. She is a law school graduate and, in fact, a member of
the Bar. Despite her failure to take her cues from the
magistrate judge's previous report that provided critical
advice for amending her complaint, she has not exhibited any
deficit that would prevent her from pursuing her own claims.
true that objections to a report and recommendation are given
fresh review. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). But “[o]verly
general objections do not satisfy the objection
requirement.” Spencer v. Bouchard, 449 F.3d
721, 725 (6th Cir. 2006). “The objections must be clear
enough to enable the district court to discern those issues
that are dispositive and contentious.” Miller v.
Currie, 50 F.3d 373, 380 (6th Cir. 1995).
“‘[O]bjections disput[ing] the correctness of the
magistrate's recommendation but fail[ing] to specify the
findings . . . believed [to be] in error' are too
general.” Spencer, 449 F.3d at 725 (quoting
Miller, 50 F.3d at 380).
Sixth Circuit has explained, “[t]he filing of
objections provides the district court with the opportunity
to consider the specific contentions of the parties and to
correct any errors immediately, ” United States v.
Walters, 638 F.2d 947, 950 (6th Cir. 1981), enabling the
court “to focus attention on those issues - factual and
legal - that are at the heart of the parties' dispute,
” Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140, 147 (1985). As
a result, “‘[o]nly those specific objections to
the magistrate's report made to the district court will
be preserved for appellate review; making some objections but
failing to raise others will not preserve all the objections
a party may have.'” McClanahan v. Comm'r of
Soc. Sec., 474 F.3d 830, 837 (6th Cir. 2006) (quoting
Smith v. Detroit Fed'n of Teachers Local 231,
829 F.2d 1370, 1373 (6th Cir. 1987)).
plaintiff has not identified any part of the report and
recommendation with which she finds fault. The Court has
reviewed the amended complaint, the motions and response, and
the report and recommendation, and finds that the plaintiff
has not stated any claims in her amended complaint for which
relief can be granted. Because the plaintiff has failed to
object to the report and recommendation in any meaningful
way, she has not persuaded the Court that it should upset the
recommendation to dismiss her case for failure to state a
it is ORDERED that the magistrate judge's report and
recommendation [dkt. #48] is ADOPTED, and the plaintiff's
objections [dkt. #49] are OVERRULED.
further ORDERED that the motion to dismiss by defendants
Wayne State University and April Ewing-Miles [dkt. #30] is
further ORDERED that the motion for summary judgment by
defendants United States Department of Education and Arne
Duncan [dkt. #41] is GRANTED.
further ORDERED that defendant Pioneer Credit Recovery,
Inc.'s motion ...