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Ransom v. Greenwood

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


January 12, 2007

BRYAN E. RANSOM, PLAINTIFF,
v.
N. GREENWOOD, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hayes, Judge

ORDER RE: PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO RETAX COSTS

Pending before the Court is Plaintiff's motion to retax costs (Doc. # 316). The Court finds the matter suitable for submission on the papers and without oral argument pursuant to Civil Local Rule 7.1(d)(1).

Plaintiff requests that the Court retax costs which were granted in favor of Defendants by the Clerk of the Court (Doc. # 313). Specifically, Plaintiff requests that the Court retax $405.71 for the cost of the deposition transcript of Plaintiff witness Frederick Hayes, $150.30 for the cost of obtaining certified copies of Plaintiff's district court pleadings in other federal litigation, and $57.11 for the cost of Plaintiff's Exhibit No. 20, an envelope enlargement exhibit. Defendants do not oppose the retax of $57.11 for the envelope enlargement, but contend that they are entitled to reimbursement for the other costs.

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920, a judge or clerk may tax as costs,

(1) Fees of the clerk and marshal;

(2) Fees of the court reporter for all or any part of the stenographic transcript necessarily obtained for use in the case;

(3) Fees and disbursements for printing and witnesses;

(4) Fees for exemplification and copies of papers necessarily obtained for use in the case;

(5) Docket fees under section 1923 of this title;

(6) Compensation of court appointed experts, compensation of interpreters, and salaries, fees, expenses, and costs of special interpretation services under section 1828 of this title.

As to the costs of obtaining a transcript of the Frederick Hayes deposition, Plaintiff requested the deposition over Defendant's objection, and ultimately elected not to use any portion of the deposition at trial. Though Plaintiff contends that the deposition was "useless" to him because defense counsel was present at the taking of the deposition, Plaintiff provides no real explanation as to why the deposition was "useless" and why he did not attempt to use it at trial. As 28 U.S.C. § 1920(2) authorizes taxing costs for court reporter fees, Plaintiff's motion to retax $405.71 for a transcript of Frederick Hayes' deposition is DENIED.

As to the costs associated with defense counsel's obtaining certified copies of Plaintiff's pleadings in other litigation in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California, Plaintiff contends that he should not have to pay the costs because the certified copies were unnecessary and irrelevant. Defendants correctly point out, however, that the certified copies of Plaintiff's prior pleadings were necessary to show that Plaintiff's First Amendment rights were not chilled under Rhodes v. Robinson, 408 F.3d 559, 567-68 (9th Cir. 2005). As 28 U.S.C. § 1920(4) authorizes taxing costs for copies of pleadings when they are necessary, Plaintiff's motion to retax $150.30 for certified copies of pleadings is DENIED.

Defendants do not oppose the retaxing of costs associated with enlarging an envelope exhibit for trial. The Court did not allow the enlarged envelope exhibit admitted at trial. After consideration of the record, the Court concludes that Plaintiff should not be taxed costs associated with enlarging the envelope. Plaintiff's motion to retax $57.11 for the envelope enlargement is GRANTED.

CONCLUSION

Plaintiff's motion for retax is granted in part and denied in part (Doc. # 316).

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

1. Plaintiff's motion to retax $405.71 for a transcript of the Frederick Hayes deposition and $150.30 for certified copies of past district court pleadings is DENIED.

2. Plaintiff's motion to retax $57.11 for the envelope enlargement is GRANTED. 3. The Clerk's Order Taxing Costs (Doc.# 313), is hereby amended in the following manner: The amount taxed for exemplification and copies is amended from $328.01 to $270.90 (change of $57.11), and the Total Costs Taxed in favor of Natalie Greenwood and Kevin Noirot is amended from $2,418.31 to $2361.20.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

WILLIAM Q. HAYES United States District Judge

20070112

© 1992-2007 VersusLaw Inc.



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