Monday, June 15, 2015

Cert. Granted In Prisoner IFP Litigation Fee Case

The U.S. Supreme Court today granted certiorari in Bruce v. Samuels, (Docket No. 14-844, cert. granted 6/15/2015) (Order List), a case that is important for prisoner litigation over religious accommodations-- cases that are often brought by prisoners in forma pauperis. At issue is the interpretation of a provision in the Prison Litigation Reform Act that caps monthly payments by prisoners proceeding in forma pauperis at 20% (28 USC 1915(b)(2)).  At issue in the case is whether a prisoner who files multiple cases or appeals has his monthly payment capped at 20% of his total income, or whether he must pay 20% of his income each month for each pending case. The Circuits are split on the issue.  In the decision below (full text), the D.C. Circuit chose the per-case approach. The SCOTUS blog case page for the case is here.