White v. Lemma – THE THREE-STRIKES PROVISION DOES NOT PRECLUDE DISMISSAL ON THE MERITS AND WITH PREJUDICE

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Ben Brown*

If a prisoner’s claim requires dismissal under the “three-strikes provision” but is also frivolous or unmeritorious, must the court dismiss the claim without prejudice or may it opt to dismiss the claim on the merits with prejudice instead?  This question was presented to the Eleventh Circuit in White v. Lemma.  The Eleventh Circuit concluded that “though a court must procedurally dismiss without prejudice the claim of a prisoner who has struck out under the three-strikes provision and failed to pay the filing fee, the court may also consider the merits to dismiss the case with prejudice instead.”

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