Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Calhoun v. Washington County Community Services Child Support Unit

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

April 23, 2019

Rhome J. Calhoun, Plaintiff,
v.
Washington County Community Services Child Support Unit, Defendant.

          Rhome J. Calhoun, P.O. Irving, TX 75016, pro se

          James R. Andreen and Samantha R. Alsadi, Erstad & Riemer, P.A., for Defendant Washington County Community Services Child Support Unit

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          HILDY BOWBEER, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on Defendant Washington County Community Services Child Support Unit's Motion to Dismiss [Doc. No. 34]. The motion has been referred to the undersigned pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636 and District of Minnesota Local Rule 72.1. See (Order for Referral [Doc. No. 40].) For the reasons set forth below, the Court recommends that the motion be granted.

         I. Background

         A. Procedural History

         Plaintiff Rhome Calhoun, pro se, initially filed this case in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas on June 8, 2018. (Compl. [Doc. No. 3].) At that time, Plaintiff claimed officers at three different state child support enforcement agencies in Washington State, Los Angeles County, and Minnesota violated his constitutional rights when they enforced child support payment obligations against him. (Id.) The Honorable David C. Godbey, United States District Court Judge of the Northern District of Texas, held that venue was improper and severed Plaintiff's action into three lawsuits. (Order Transferring to Another District [Doc. No. 11].) Plaintiff's claims against “State of MN DHS Child Support Enforcement and Ashley L. Parker” were thus transferred to this District on July 3, 2018. (Id.)

         Plaintiff filed a second Complaint and “Additional Facts”[1] in this District on September 2, 2018, in which he withdrew claims against the previously named defendants and substituted the Washington County Community Services Child Support Unit (hereafter “Defendant”) in their place. See (Am. Compl.; Additional Facts [Doc. No. 25].) Plaintiff raised two claims in the Amended Complaint: (1) violation of his Fourteenth Amendment due process rights because a Notice and Finding of Financial Responsibility (“NFFR”) that established monthly child support payments for Plaintiff's two children was created and signed by someone who was not a judge, and (2) violation of his Fourth Amendment rights because Defendant collected money pursuant to the allegedly unlawful NFFR. (Am. Compl. ¶¶ 4, 7.)

         B. Allegations in the Complaint

         Plaintiff alleges that in 1997, the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, Division of Child Support issued to Plaintiff a Notice and Finding of Financial Responsibility (“NFFR”) that established monthly child support payments for Plaintiff's two children. (Am. Compl. ¶ 7; see also Aff. of Samantha R. Alsadi in Supp. of Def.'s Mot. to Dismiss Ex. C [Doc. No. 38-3].[2]) The custodial parent of Plaintiff's children (“Custodial Parent”) applied for and received an AFDC Title IV-D loan from Washington State and assigned to that state her rights to the payments received from Plaintiff. (Am. Compl. ¶ 7.) Plaintiff began payments on the AFDC loan in 2000 through income withholding from his paychecks, and the loan was repaid in full as of 2007. See (Id.; see also Case Payment History, Am. Compl. Ex. 1-4 [Doc. Nos. 24-1 to 24-4].) Plaintiff alleges, however, that the NFFR was not signed by a judge, and was issued in violation of his right to due process under the Fourteenth Amendment.

         Plaintiff further alleges that the Custodial Parent moved to Minnesota in 2000 but did not apply for an AFDC Title IV-D loan in this state. (Am. Compl. ¶ 7.) He alleges that Defendant nevertheless began seizing moneys from him, through income withholding and interception of his federal income tax refunds, beginning in 2000 and continuing through the present. (Id.) He contends these seizures violate his rights under the Fourth Amendment.

         Plaintiff asks the Court to order Defendant to return all monies illegally seized, in the amount of $49, 733.05; to “clear [his] name from their records; to stop sending income withholding notices to his employers; to stop reporting to credit reporting agencies that he has an outstanding debt in the amount of $40, 162; to stop intercepting his income tax refunds; and to stop reporting to the State Department passport control authorities that he is in arrears on his child support obligations. (Am. Compl. at 4.)

         On December 21, 2018, Plaintiff filed a “Notice of Petition to Vacate a Void Judgment Coram Non-Judice ‘Before a Person Not a Judge' Void for Violation of the 14th Amendment and Must be Vacated Under Federal Rule 60(b)(4) or State Law Equivalent.” (Mot. to Vacate Judgment [Doc. No. 31].) The same day, Defendant filed a motion to dismiss Plaintiff's Amended Complaint under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(2), 12(b)(5), and 12(b)(6).

         The Court heard arguments on both motions on February 14, 2019. Plaintiff withdrew his Motion to Vacate Judgment at the hearing for the reasons stated on the record. See (Feb. 14, 2019 Minute Entry [Doc. No. 46].) Thus, the only motion before the Court is Defendant's Motion to Dismiss.

         II. Discussion

         Plaintiff did not expressly plead claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the Amended Complaint. But because the Court liberally construes pro se pleadings “in a way that permits the layperson's claim to be considered within the proper legal framework, ” Stone v. Harry, 364 F.3d 912, 914 (8th Cir. 2004), the Court construes the Amended Complaint as setting forth claims under 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983, which allows a person under certain circumstances to sue a governmental entity for violating his ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.