God bless the people who troll through PACER filings to find gems like this. Somewhere in the wilds of North Dakota is a guy, Garet Bradford, who is very mad that the University of North Dakota threw him out after his first year. Bradford is very mad and sad, and is suing to get back in and get some sweet coin.
We spent some quality time trying to figure out what happened, but let’s face it: reading a complaint is a one-sided affair. Near as we can figure, Bradford got tossed because of something the admissions review board found out well post-admission, irrespective of his first-year performance. Bradford is pretty certain that isn’t cool.
To his credit, Bradford went to town on the causes of action. This thing reads like a laundry list of things you learn in your first year of law school. Freedom of speech retaliation? Check. Due process violations? Check. Breach of contract? Check. Defamation? Check. Tortious interference with a business relationship? Check. Intentional infliction of emotional distress? Check and check and checkity-check-check. Seriously, when is the last time you saw a good old-fashioned IIED claim?
Bradford also wants attorney fees. Don’t we all? However, some quick Googling (what? you think blog revenue covers Westlaw??) reminded us that under Kay v. Ehrler, 499 U.S. 432, pro se litigants can’t get attorney fees:
A rule that authorizes awards of counsel fees to pro se litigants — even if limited to those who are members of the bar — would create a disincentive to employ counsel whenever such a plaintiff considered himself competent to litigate on his own behalf. The statutory policy of furthering the successful prosecution of meritorious claims is better served by a rule that creates an incentive to retain counsel in every such case.
Man, we cannot WAIT to see UND’s answer to this complaint.
If you feel like tackling the entire 22-page complaint, go for it.
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