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Dodson v. Maz South Sacramento

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


February 6, 2009

ROBERT DODSON, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MAZ SOUTH SACRAMENTO, INC. DBA BAJA FRESH MEXICAN GRILL; JAMBA JUICE COMPANY DBA JAMBA JUICE; TOGO'S EATERIES, INC. DBA TOGO'S; BASKIN ROBBINS INCORPORATED DBA BASKIN ROBBINS; RR SACRAMENTO, LLC; STARBUCKS CORPORATION DBA STARBUCKS #6714; CORDANO GATEWAY, LLC; AND MZLB SACRAMENTO, LLC, DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Garland E. Burrell, Jr. United States District Judge

ORDER*fn1

Defendant Starbucks Corporation ("Starbucks") moves for costs and attorney's fees under 42 U.S.C. § 12205 (the "ADA"), arguing it is the prevailing party under the statute and entitled to attorney fees and costs because Plaintiff litigated frivolous ADA claims and the sole claim tried was an "unpreserved" claim. Plaintiff counters his lawsuit prompted Starbucks to remedy all of his ADA claims except the claim that was tried; and that Plaintiff's trial theory was not frivolous.

The parties have not presented a record sufficient for a decision on the frivolity of Plaintiff's claims that were not tried since the record does not contain sufficient information on whether or not Starbucks remedied ADA violations in response to Plaintiff's lawsuit. Further, Starbucks' argument that the claim tried was not preserved for trial is erroneous since it was preserved for trial in the Final Pretrial Order; nor has Starbucks shown that the issue tried was "frivolous, unreasonable, or without foundation." See Brown v. Lucky Stores, 246 F.3d 1182, 1190 (9th Cir. 2001)("Attorneys fees and [costs] under [the ADA] should be awarded to a prevailing defendant only if the plaintiff's action was frivolous, unreasonable, or without foundation").

Therefore, Starbucks' motion for costs and attorney's fees is denied.


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