Hall v. St John Missionary Baptist Church

Filing 62

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 58 Motion for Bill of Costs and awarding defendant costs in the amount of $606.60. Signed by Judge William R. Wilson, Jr on 4/13/10. (bkp)

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS WESTERN DIVISION SONYA HALL v. 4:08CV00645-WRW DEFENDANT PLAINTIFF ST. JOHN MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH ORDER Pending is Defendant's Motion for Costs (Doc. No. 58). Plaintiff has responded.1 Plaintiff sued Defendant for employment discrimination, outrage, and other claims. Defendant prevailed on all counts. In its Motion for Costs, Defendant asks for $446.60 for the transcript of Plaintiff's deposition, as well as a little over $200 for witness fees and mileage, for a total of $655.15.2 Under Rule 54(d)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, costs other than attorneys fees "should be allowed to the prevailing party."3 The losing party has the "burden of overcoming the presumption that the prevailing party is entitled to costs, meaning that the losing party must `suggest a rationale under which the district court's actions constitute an abuse of discretion.'"4 Even if a deposition was not used at trial, a district court has discretion to award costs in connection with the deposition if it was necessary for use in the case, and not just 1 Doc. No. 60. Doc. No. 58. Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(d)(1). 2 3 186th & Dodge, LP v. Rave Reviews Cinemas, 501 F.3d 945, 958 (8th Cir. 2007) (quoting Janis v. Biesheuvel, 428 F.3d 795, 801 (8th Cir. 2005)). 1 4 "purely investigative."5 A judge may tax as costs "fees and disbursements for . . . witnesses."6 Witnesses are generally allowed to receive a per diem amount, and reimbursement of mileage.7 Plaintiff's deposition was necessary in this case. I relied on deposition testimony in deciding Plaintiff's outrage claim. Accordingly, awarding costs connected with the deposition is appropriate. In connection with witness fees and mileage, Defendant asks for: "Witness fee and mileage for Darryle Hinton (subpoena) 53.23; Witness fee and mileage for Rudolph Howard (subpoena) 52.93; Witness fee and mileage for Friendly Womack (subpoena) 54.44; Witness fee and mileage for Gary Noble (subpoena) 47.95."8 Each of these witnesses testified at trial on March 17, 2010.9 Defendant, however, did not provide any documentation with respect to mileage. Accordingly, I will not award mileage -- I will award only $40 per witness as an attendance fee for a total of $160.00. The sum of costs in connection with Plaintiff's deposition ($446.60) plus witness attendance fees ($160.00) is $606.60. Defendant's Motion for Costs is GRANTED for costs in the amount of $606.60. IT IS SO ORDERED this 13th day of April, 2010. /s/Wm. R. Wilson, Jr. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 5 Slagenweit v. Slagenweit, 63 F.3d 719, 721 (8th Cir. 1995). 28 U.S.C. 1920(3). 28 U.S.C. 1821. Doc. No. 58. Doc. No. 54. 2 6 7 8 9

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