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Roseboro v. Garrison

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
Oct 15, 1975
528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975)

Summary

holding that court must provide notice of requirements of summary judgment rule before granting summary judgment against pro se litigant

Summary of this case from Smith v. Beavers

Opinion

No. 75-1082.

Argued June 10, 1975.

Decided October 15, 1975.

Jacob L. Safron, Asst. Atty. Gen., N.C. and (Rufus L. Edmisten, Atty. Gen., N.C., on brief) for appellee.

Roy T. Stuckey, Columbia, S.C. [Court-assigned counsel], for appellant.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina, at Raleigh. F. T. Dupree, Jr., District Judge.

Before RUSSELL, FIELD and WIDENER, Circuit Judges.


Robert Louis Roseboro, an inmate of the Central Prison in Raleigh, North Carolina, instituted this action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 seeking declaratory and injunctive relief as well as damages for alleged violations of his constitutional rights. The district court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment and upon this appeal Roseboro contends that summary disposition of his case was improper.

Three of the allegations of Roseboro's pro se complaint were directed at his custody classification and consequent transfer from Polk Youth Center to Central Prison, and the remaining allegations challenge his segregation from the general prison population, the conduct of the prison guards and the failure to furnish him certain medical treatment. In support of his summary motion the defendant submitted his own affidavit, together with the affidavits of other members of the prison staff bearing upon the allegations of the complaint. Finding that the affidavits were in compliance with Rule 56(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and noting that the plaintiff had failed to file any counter-affidavit controverting those submitted by the defendant, the district court concluded that summary judgment was appropriate.

In Wooten v. Shook, 527 F.2d 976 (4 Cir. 1975), we stated that "[w]hile we do not hold that an evidentiary hearing is required in every case such as this, the district court should ordinarily require that a dismissal or summary motion be supported by affidavit or other material sufficiently demonstrating that there is no factual issue and that dismissal is appropriate as a matter of law." In the present case, of course, the defendant has met this requirement and if this were an ordinary civil action the failure of Roseboro to file any counter-affidavit would warrant the entry of summary judgment. We agree with the plaintiff, however, that there is another side to the coin which requires that the plaintiff be advised of his right to file counter-affidavits or other responsive material and alerted to the fact that his failure to so respond might result in the entry of summary judgment against him. In our opinion the appropriate rule was set forth in Hudson v. Hardy, 134 U.S.App. D.C. 44, 412 F.2d 1091, 1094 (1968), where the court stated:

"We hold that before entering summary judgment against appellant, the District Court, as a bare minimum, should have provided him with fair notice of the requirements of the summary judgment rule. We stress the need for a form of notice sufficiently understandable to one in appellant's circumstances fairly to apprise him of what is required."

Assuredly, a pro se plaintiff is entitled to such a reasonable safeguard when confronted with the possibility of summary disposition of his case.

Since Roseboro was not represented by counsel in this case and there is nothing in the record to indicate that he was notified of his right or responsibility with respect to the defendant's motion, the judgment of the district court must be reversed and the case remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

Reversed and remanded.


Summaries of

Roseboro v. Garrison

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
Oct 15, 1975
528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975)

holding that court must provide notice of requirements of summary judgment rule before granting summary judgment against pro se litigant

Summary of this case from Smith v. Beavers

holding that before summary judgment is entered against a pro se litigant, the court must notify him of his right to file counteraffidavits or other appropriate materials, and give him a reasonable opportunity to respond

Summary of this case from Wallace v. Stevenson

holding that pro se litigants must be notified of right or responsibility to respond to dispositive motion before dismissing case

Summary of this case from Castillo-Fornaris v. Crawford

holding pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Mickey v. Wexford

holding pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Mansfield v. Kerry

holding that a district court must advise a pro se litigant of his right under the summary judgment rule to file opposing affidavits to defeat a defendant's motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from York v. Soc. Sec. Admin.

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Bey v. Pedersen

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Archie v. Booker

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Milligan v. Ally Fin. Inc.

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Awah v. Capital One Bank, N.A.

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file a response in opposition

Summary of this case from Wilson v. Gray

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Nam v. 2012 Inc.

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Jassie v. Mariner

holding that pro se plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

Summary of this case from Pruitt v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

holding a district court must provide a pro se litigant an explanation and "fair notice of the requirements of the summary judgment rule"

Summary of this case from Boone v. Beckwith

holding self-represented plaintiffs should be advised of their right to file responsive material to a motion for summary judgment

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Case details for

Roseboro v. Garrison

Case Details

Full title:ROBERT LOUIS ROSEBORO, APPELLANT v. SAM P. GARRISON, INDIVIDUALLY AND IN…

Court:United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

Date published: Oct 15, 1975

Citations

528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975)

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