Veteranclaims’s Blog

September 17, 2020

Single Judge; Thompson v. Wilkie, 30 Vet.App 345 (2018); jurisprudence regarding aggregate actions; pro-se non-attorney litigants cannot initiate aggregate actions;

Designated for electronic publication only
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR VETERANS CLAIMS
No. 18-1964
PAUL WRIGHT, PETITIONER,
V.
ROBERT L. WILKIE,
SECRETARY OF VETERANS AFFAIRS, RESPONDENT.
Before DAVIS, Senior Judge.1
O R D E R
Note: Pursuant to U.S. Vet. App. R. 30(a), this action may not be cited as precedent.
On April 17, 2018, U.S. Navy veteran and self-represented petitioner Paul Wright filed a petition for extraordinary aggregate equitable relief on behalf of all veterans with claims pending before the Secretary.2 In it, he alleges that the Secretary has implemented an unlawfully higher burden of proof on claimants.3
On June 14, 2018, this Court issued an order staying the matter for Monk v. Wilkie,4 because at that time, the Court’s jurisprudence regarding aggregate actions was undeveloped. Since that time, however, this Court found that pro-se non-attorney litigants cannot initiate aggregate actions.5 Because Mr. Wright is a pro-se non-attorney litigant, he is not an adequate class representative for the class he has defined. Therefore, his April 2018 petition will be dismissed.
Upon consideration of the foregoing, it is
ORDERED that the June 14, 2018, stay in this matter is lifted. It is further
1 Judge Davis is a Senior Judge acting in recall status. In re Recall of Retired Judge, U.S. VET. APP. MISC. ORDER 03-20 (Jan. 2, 2020).
2 See 38 U.S.C. ยง 7261(a)(2); Petition (Pet.).
3 See Pet. at 3-5.
4 Monk v. Wilkie, 32 Vet.App. 87, 93 (2019). Monk was appealed to the Federal Circuit on Dec. 31, 2019.
5 See Thompson v. Wilkie, 30 Vet.App 345 (2018).
2
ORDERED that Mr. Wright’s April 17, 2018, petition for extraordinary aggregate equitable relief via a writ of mandamus is DISMISSED.
DATED: September 16, 2020 BY THE COURT:
ROBERT N. DAVIS
Senior Judge
Copies to:
Paul Wright
VA General Counsel (027)

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