Prisoner Filings

The Clerk's Office is open weekdays from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM.

Seattle: (206) 370-8400
Tacoma: (253) 882-3800

If you cannot afford a filing fee, you can complete an In Forma Pauperis (IFP) application to have the fee waived.

Civil IFP application (PDF)
Habeas Corpus IFP application (PDF)

The following prisoner-related filings are accepted in this court. Please look at the Prisoner Litigation Manual (PDF) for more information about these cases.

Please remember: The court's Clerk's Office cannot provide you with legal advice. Use an attorney for legal questions. The Clerk's Office can help you understand filing procedures, court fees and questions about the status of your case, however.

 

28 USC § 2241 Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus form (PDF)
These are generally filed by inmates who are in federal custody, including immigration detention, and seek to challenge their confinement. The fee for a prisoner filing this petition is $5. 28 USC § 2241 definition.

 

28 USC § 2254 Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus form (PDF)
These are generally filed by inmates who are in state custody and seek to challenge their confinement in violation of the Constitution, law, or treaties of the United States. The fee for a prisoner filing this petition is $5. 28 USC § 2254 definition.

 

42 USC § 1983 Civil Rights Complaint form (PDF)
A 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action may be brought by anyone who believes that his or her federal constitutional rights have been violated. The fee for this complaint is $400, which includes the $350 filing fee, plus a $50 administrative fee. Should you be granted to proceed on your case in forma pauperis, and the judge later orders that the cost of the filing fee be paid to the court, you will only be required to pay the $350 filing fee. 42 USC § 1983 definition.

 

28 USC § 2255 Motion to Vacate, Set Aside, or Correct Sentence form (PDF)
These are motions to vacate, set aside or correct a sentence by a person in federal custody.  You may file this motion only if you are attacking your federal sentence.  A federal sentence is a sentence imposed by a federal court.  The fact that you may be located in a federal institution has nothing to do with this motion.  If you are attacking a state sentence, a 28 U.S.C. § 2254 Habeas Corpus Petition may be the proper procedure. There is no fee for these motions. 28 USC § 2255 definition.