Hall v. USAble Life
ORDER denying pltf's 48 Motion for Attorneys' Fees and Costs. Signed by Judge Susan Webber Wright on 5/6/11. (vjt)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
No. 4:08CV04214 SWW
Before the Court is plaintiff’s motion to award fees and costs in connection with her
motion to remand pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c). Defendant responded in opposition to the
The statute provides that a court remanding a case may “require payment of just costs and
any actual expenses, including attorney fees, incurred as a result of the removal.” 28 U.S.C. §
1447(c). “[A]n award of fees under § 1447(c) is left to the district court's discretion, with no
heavy congressional thumb on either side of the scales . . .” Martin v. Franklin Capital Corp.,
546 U.S. 132, 139 (2005). “The appropriate test for awarding fees under § 1447(c) should
recognize the desire to deter removals sought for the purpose of prolonging litigation and
imposing costs on the opposing party, while not undermining Congress' basic decision to afford
defendants a right to remove as a general matter, when the statutory criteria are satisfied.” Id. at
“Absent unusual circumstances, courts may award attorneys' fees under § 1447(c) only
where the removing party lacked an objectively reasonable basis for seeking removal.
Conversely, when an objectively reasonable basis exists, fees should be denied.” Id. at 14.
Because the Court finds that defendant had an objectively reasonable basis for removing the
action based on ERISA, the Court declines to award plaintiff her costs and fees.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that plaintiff’s motion for attorneys’ fees and costs
[docket entry 48] is denied.
DATED this 6th day of May, 2011.
/s/Susan Webber Wright
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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