(SS) Jacobson v. Commissioner of Social Security

Filing 23

Order requiring Plaintiff to file supplemental brief regarding Motion for Attorney fees,signed by Magistrate Judge Stanley A. Boone on 10/14/2020. (Filing Deadline: 10/20/2020) (Rosales, O.)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 DAVID JACOBSON, Plaintiff, 12 13 14 15 Case No. 1:18-cv-01439-SAB ORDER REQUIRING PLAINTIFF TO FILE SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEF REGARDING MOTION FOR ATTORNEY FEES v. COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY, FIVE DAY DEADLINE Defendant. 16 17 Plaintiff David Jacobson (“Plaintiff”) filed this action seeking judicial review of a final 18 decision of the Commissioner of Social Security (“Commissioner” or “Defendant”) denying his 19 application for disability benefits pursuant to the Social Security Act. The action was voluntarily 20 remanded for further proceedings at the stipulation of the parties. On remand, Plaintiff was 21 found to be disabled and awarded past due benefits. 22 On September 30, 2020, Plaintiff filed a motion for an award of attorney fees pursuant to 23 42 U.S.C. § 406(b). In the motion, counsel states that she is seeking a net award of attorney fees 24 in the amount of $32,986.76. (ECF No. 20 at 1.) Plaintiff also states that past due benefits in the 25 amount of $37,412.90 were withheld for the payment of attorney fees and she is reducing this 26 amount by $14,062.17 for approval of a gross fee in the sum of $23,350.73. (Id.) Upon receipt 27 of this sum, counsel will refund Plaintiff the $4,426.14 in EAJA fees that were previously paid in 28 this matter. (Id.) Using this gross figure, the net fees requested would be a net award of 1 1 $18,924.59, not the $32,986.76 stated in the motion. In her declaration, Counsel states that she is 2 requesting the reduced fee of $23,350.73. (ECF No. 20-1 at 2.) While it appears that the request for $32,986.76 is a typographical error, the Court shall 3 4 require counsel to clarify the gross amount of attorney fees that are being sought by the motion 5 for attorney fees filed on September 30, 2020. Additionally, the fee agreement included in the motion for attorney fees only covers the 6 7 administrative level and explicitly states that it does not apply to representation at the United 8 States District Court. In determining whether the fees requested are reasonable, the district court 9 must respect “the primacy of lawful attorney-client fee agreements,” and is to look first at the 10 contingent-fee agreement, and then test it for reasonableness.” Crawford v. Astrue, 586 F.3d 11 1142, 1148 (9th Cir. 2009). Plaintiff shall submit the fee agreement that covers representation at 12 the district court level or provide legal authority that the fee agreement that has been provided 13 covers the representation for the purposes of a 406(b) fee request. Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that within five (5) days of the date of entry of 14 15 this order, Plaintiff shall file supplemental briefing clarifying the amount of attorney fees that are 16 sought by the motion filed on September 30, 2020 and addressing the fee agreement that covers 17 representation in district court. 18 19 IT IS SO ORDERED. 20 Dated: October 14, 2020 UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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