United States District Court, D. Colorado
Michael E. Hegarty, United States Magistrate Judge.
Plaintiff has filed a “Petition for Order Granting
Judicial Notice of an Adjudicative Fact, ” which the
Court liberally construes as a request for leave to amend the
operative Amended Complaint to add a claim for relief [ECF
No. 64]. Plaintiff “moves that this Court supplement
and/or amend his claim with the deprivation of the [Inmate
Accident Compensation Act (“IACA”)], as permitted
by 18 U.S.C. subsection 4126 where the injuries sustained
were clearly work related.” For his failure to state a
plausible claim, the Court will deny Plaintiff's motion.
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that,
following a 21-day period for service of the complaint or
service of a responsive pleading or Rule 12 motion, a party
may amend its complaint only by leave of the court or by
written consent of the adverse party. Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a).
Rule 15 instructs courts to “freely give leave when
justice so requires.” Id. Nevertheless,
denying leave to amend is proper if the proposed amendments
are unduly delayed, unduly prejudicial, futile, or sought in
bad faith. Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182 (1962);
Frank v. U.S. West, Inc., 3 F.3d 1357, 1365 (10th
proposed amendment is futile if the complaint, as amended,
would be subject to dismissal.” Jefferson Cnty.
Sch. Dist. No. R-1 v. Moody's Investor's Servs.,
Inc., 175 F.3d 848, 859 (10th Cir. 1999); see also
Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1109-10 (10th Cir. 1991)
(“Although dismissal sunder Rule 12(b)(6) typically
follow a motion to dismiss ..., a court may dismiss sua
sponte when it is patently obvious that the plaintiff could
not prevail on the facts alleged, and allowing him an
opportunity to amend his complaint would be futile.”)
futility is based on whether a claim could survive a motion
to dismiss, the applicable standards for resolving a motion
to dismiss are relevant here. The purpose of a motion to
dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) is to test “the
sufficiency of the allegations within the four corners of the
complaint after taking those allegations as true.”
Mobley v. McCormick, 40 F.3d 337, 340 (10th Cir.
1994). To survive a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, “[t]he
complaint must plead sufficient facts, taken as true, to
provide ‘plausible grounds' that discovery will
reveal evidence to support the plaintiff's
allegations.” Shero v. City of Grove, Okla.,
510 F.3d 1196, 1200 (10th Cir. 2007) (citing Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). That is, a
complaint must include “enough facts to state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face.” TON
Servs., Inc. v. Qwest Corp., 493 F.3d 1225, 1236 (10th
Cir. 2007). “A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the alleged misconduct.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). Moreover, “[a]
pleading that offers ‘labels and conclusions' or a
formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action
will not do. Nor does the complaint suffice if it tenders
‘naked assertion[s]' devoid of ‘further
factual enhancement.'” Id. (citation
addition, a federal court must construe a pro se
plaintiff's “pleadings liberally, applying a less
stringent standard than is applicable to pleadings filed by
lawyers. [The] court, however, will not supply additional
factual allegations to round out a plaintiff's complaint
or construct a legal theory on plaintiff's behalf.”
Whitney v. New Mexico, 113 F.3d 1170, 1173-74 (10th
Cir. 1997) (quotations and citations omitted).
the Court notes that the operative pleading alleges in the
“Nature of the Case” section, “On or about
08-07-2014, while working my job assignment,
was injured by an 800 pound food cart which knocked me out of
my wheelchair, leaving me unconscious for an unknown period
of time.” Am. Compl. 3 (emphasis added). However,
Plaintiff mentions nothing about whether he sought (and was
refused) worker's compensation benefits under the IACA
following the incident.
Sixth Circuit has recently described how the IACA
The Inmate Accident Compensation Act (“IACA”)
authorizes the Attorney General to promulgate regulations
creating a workers' compensation scheme for federal
prisoners who are injured during the course of their prison
employment. See 18 U.S.C. § 4126(c); 28 C.F.R. §
301.101. After missing three consecutive days of work,
prisoners are paid 75 percent of their lost wages for any
additional work missed. 28 C.F.R. § 301.203. If the
prisoner disagrees with the prison's determination as to
whether his injury was actually work-related, he may appeal
through the ARP-the Bureau of Prisons'
(“BOP”) general grievance process. 28 C.F.R.
If the prisoner's injury creates a “physical
impairment” that still exists at the time the prisoner
is released, then no earlier than 45 days before he is
released the prisoner may file a claim to recover additional
compensation; the amount recoverable is specified in the
compensation schedule of the FECA, 5 U.S.C. § 8107. 28
C.F.R. § 301.314. The initial determination on this
claim is made by an examiner. If the prisoner disagrees with
the examiner's decision, he may seek an evidentiary
hearing before an Inmate Accident Compensation Committee. If
still dissatisfied with the Committee's decision, the
prisoner may further appeal to the Chief Operating Officer of
the federal prison system. See 28 C.F.R.
§§ 301.303-.315. At no point during the process is
Koprowski v. Baker, 822 F.3d 248, 254 (6th Cir.
2016). Clearly, then, the IACA governs the administrative
process provided for a prisoner who is injured while working
for the prison facility.
Sixth Circuit described the difference between claims brought
under the IACA in a prison facility and constitutional claims
brought in a court of law.
In an IACA claim, a prisoner seeks workers' compensation
from the employer (the United States) for an on-the-job
injury, similar to the type any employee could suffer in the
course of her employment. An Eighth Amendment action seeks
something significantly different: compensation from a prison
official for unnecessary pain that can be inflicted only on a
prisoner by such an official.
Id. at 256. To the extent a prisoner seeks review of
a decision made by the prison facility with respect to IACA
benefits, the ...