Mogan v. Sacks, Ricketts & Case LLP et al

Filing 82

ORDER by Judge Thomas S. Hixson RE 60 Motion for Attorney Fees; 61 Motion for Attorney Fees. (tshlc2, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 5/9/2022)

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Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 1 of 11 1 2 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 3 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 4 5 MICHAEL MOGAN, Plaintiff, 6 7 Case No. 21-cv-08431-TSH v. 8 SACKS, RICKETTS & CASE LLP, et al., 9 Defendants. ORDER RE: DEFENDANTS’ MOTIONS FOR ATTORNEYS’ FEES AND COSTS Re: Dkt. Nos. 60, 61, 81 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 I. INTRODUCTION Plaintiff Michael Mogan, an attorney licensed in California, brought this case against 13 Airbnb Inc. and three of its employees (collectively, “Airbnb Defendants”) and counsel that 14 represented Airbnb Defendants, Sacks, Ricketts & Case, LLP and two of its attorneys 15 (collectively, “SRC Defendants”) for claims related to a sanction against Mogan in a previous 16 state court action. On January 10, 2022, the Court granted defendants’ Motions to Dismiss 17 (“MTD Order”). ECF No. 38. Because SRC Defendants brought their Motion to Dismiss under 18 California’s anti-SLAPP statute, which allows the Court to strike and dismiss certain lawsuits, the 19 Court directed SRC Defendants to file a separate Motion for Attorneys’ Fees. Id. at 23-24. On 20 January 12, 2022, the Court granted Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for Sanctions and held sanctions 21 of reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs were appropriate under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11. 22 ECF No. 50. 23 Pending before the Court are Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees and Costs 24 (ECF No. 60) and SRC Defendants’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees (ECF No. 61). The Court finds 25 these matters suitable for disposition without oral argument. See Civ. L.R. 7-1(b). Having 26 considered the parties’ positions, relevant legal authority, and the record in this case, the Court 27 GRANTS Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees and Costs and GRANTS SRC 28 Defendants’ Motion for Attorneys’ Fees for the following reasons. Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 2 of 11 II. 1 BACKGROUND 2 The facts of this case are well known to the parties, and the Court has previously 3 summarized this case’s background in its MTD Order. ECF No. 38; Mogan v. Sacks, Ricketts & 4 Case LLP, Case No. 21-cv-8431, 2022 WL 94927, at *2-4 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 10, 2022). The Court 5 incorporates by reference the factual background set forth therein. 6 III. AIRBNB DEFENDANTS’ MOTION On January 12, 2022, the Court granted Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for Sanctions 8 (“Sanctions Order”). ECF No. 50. The Court held Mogan violated Federal Rule of Civil 9 Procedure 11 by filing a frivolous complaint, found sanctions in the form of reasonable attorneys’ 10 fees and costs appropriate, and ordered Airbnb Defendants to file a separate motion addressing the 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 7 amount of attorneys’ fees and costs. Id. at 3-9, 11. On February 10, 2022, Airbnb Defendants filed a Motion for Attorneys’ Fees and Costs. 12 13 ECF No. 60. On March 10, 2022, Mogan filed an Opposition (ECF No. 78) and, on March 24, 14 2022, Airbnb Defendants filed a Reply (ECF No. 79). On March 27, 2022, Mogan filed 15 Objections to Airbnb Defendants’ Reply and Request for an Evidentiary Hearing. ECF No. 81. 16 A. 17 Legal Standard “[I]f imposed on motion and warranted for effective deterrence,” a sanction may include 18 “an order directing payment to the movant of part or all of the reasonable attorney's fees and other 19 expenses directly resulting from the violation.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(c)(4). “[W]here the original 20 complaint is the improper pleading, all attorney fees reasonably incurred in defending against the 21 claims asserted in the complaint form the proper basis for sanctions.” Gaskell v. Weir, 10 F.3d 22 626, 629 (9th Cir. 1993). 23 “Courts typically determine reasonableness by conducting a lodestar analysis of the hours 24 expended and the hourly rate charged.” Superior Consulting Servs., Inc. v. Steeves-Kiss, Case No. 25 17-cv-6059-EMC, 2018 WL 2183295, at *1 (N.D. Cal. May 11, 2018); see also Morales v. City of 26 San Rafael, 96 F.3d 359, 363 (9th Cir. 1996) (“The customary method of determining fees . . . is 27 known as the lodestar method.”). The lodestar analysis “requires the court to multiply the number 28 of hours reasonably expended on the litigation by a reasonable hourly rate.” Christensen v. 2 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 3 of 11 1 Stevedoring Servs. of Am., 557 F.3d 1049, 1053 n.4 (9th Cir. 2009) (internal citation omitted). 2 B. Discussion Airbnb Defendants retained three O’Melveny & Myers LLP attorneys—Damli Taylor, 3 4 Jennifer Cardelús, and Kelly Kambourelis (collectively, “O’Melveny Attorneys”)—in connection 5 with this case. ECF No. 60-1, Taylor Decl., at ¶¶ 2, 6. Airbnb Defendants seek a total of 6 $185,092.4 in attorneys’ fees and costs. ECF Nos. 60 at 8 ($172,983.72 in fees and costs for work 7 performed prior to and including the instant motion); 79 at 9 ($12,108.68 in fees for work on reply 8 for instant motion). Airbnb Defendants filed declarations and exhibits showing itemized billing records in 10 support of their requested $185,092.4 in attorneys’ fees and costs. ECF Nos. 60-1, Exhibit 1, 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 9 (seeking $172,983.72 in fees and costs for work performed prior to and including their instant 12 motion); 79-1, Exhibit 2 (seeking $12,108.68 in attorneys fee for work on reply for instant 13 motion). The Court considers the reasonableness of Airbnb Defendants’ requested fees and costs 14 with the lodestar analysis.1 a. 15 Rates Airbnb Defendants request the following rates for the O’Melveny Attorneys: 16 17 18 Attorney Title 19 Damali Taylor Partner Billing Rate $935 (2021); $1,015.75 (2022) 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 1 Although the Court addressed the imposition of sanctions in its Sanctions Order, Mogan continues to dispute sanctions. Mogan argues he did not have sufficient notice of sanctions, he did not consent to magistrate judge jurisdiction, Airbnb Defendants’ request for attorneys’ fees and costs is late under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54, and sanctions was improperly issued sua sponte. ECF No. 78 at 2, 4-5, 14-18. The Court, consistent with its Sanctions Order, finds attorneys’ fees and costs are appropriate under Rule 11. The Court addressed Mogan’s argument regarding notice in the Sanctions Order, ECF No. 50 at 7-8, and Mogan consented to magistrate judge jurisdiction. ECF Nos. 8 (Mogan’s consent to magistrate judge jurisdiction). Sanctions were imposed under Rule 11—not Rule 54—and upon Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for Sanctions. See Barber v. Miller, 146 F.3d 707, 711 (9th Cir. 1998) (“[T]he court did not initiate the sanction . . . [Rule 11] distinguishes between sanctions imposed upon motion of a party and those imposed by show-cause order on the initiative of the court.”). 3 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 4 of 11 1 Jennifer Cardelús 2 Kelly Kambourelis Associate 3 4 Counsel $845.75 (2021); $884 (2022) $518.50 (2021); $629 (2022) See ECF Nos. 60-2 (Exhibit 1); 79-2 (Exhibit 2). To determine whether these hourly rates are reasonable, the Court considers “prevailing 5 rates in this district for personnel of comparable experience, skill, and reputation.” Dickey v. 6 Advanced Micro Devices, Inc., Case No. 15-cv-4922-HSG, 2020 WL 870928, at *8 (N.D. Cal. 7 Feb. 21, 2020). As the fee applicants, Airbnb Defendants have “the burden of producing 8 satisfactory evidence, in addition to the affidavits of its counsel, that the requested rates are in line 9 with those prevailing in the community for similar services of lawyers of reasonably comparable 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 skill and reputation.” Jordan v. Multnomah Cnty., 815 F.2d 1258, 1263 (9th Cir. 1987). Damali Taylor is a partner with over six years of litigation experience and has led more 12 than twenty jury trials, conducted hundreds of court hearings, and defended against hundreds of 13 pretrial motions. ECF No. 60-1, Taylor Decl ¶ 6. Cardelús is counsel and has twelve years of 14 experience representing clients in a broad range of complex litigation matters. Id. Based on the 15 Court’s review of cases in this district, the Court finds the rates of Taylor and Cardelús reasonable. 16 See Schneider v. Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc., 336 F.R.D. 588, 600-01 (N.D. Cal. Nov. 4, 2020) 17 (finding rates between $425 and $695 for associates and up to $1,275 for partners reasonable); In 18 re Yahoo! Inc. Customer Data Sec. Breach Litig., 2020 WL 4212811, at *26 (N.D. Cal. July 22, 19 2020) (finding rates up to $900 for partners and $850 for non-partner attorneys reasonable); 20 Dickey, 2020 WL 870928, at *8 (finding rates between $275 and $575 for associates up to $1,000 21 for partners reasonable). 22 Kamourelis is a “junior associate who, prior to joining O’Melveny, held a clerkship with 23 the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.” ECF No. 60-1 at ¶ 6. Unlike the 24 information provided for Taylor and Cardelús, the information for Kamourelis fails to provide the 25 total number of years Kamourelis has been in practice and the type of cases or work Kamourelis 26 has performed. This lack of information fails to meet Airbnb Defendants’ “burden of producing 27 satisfactory evidence” demonstrating Kamourelis’s rates of $518.50 in 2021 and $629.00 in 2022 28 “are in line with those prevailing in the community for similar services of lawyers of reasonably 4 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 5 of 11 1 comparable skill and reputation.” Camacho, 523 F.3d at 980. Given the Court’s assessment of 2 similar services by lawyers of reasonably comparable skill, experience and reputation, the Court 3 finds $450 to be a reasonable rate for Kamourelis. See Ingram v. Oroudjian, 647 F.3d 925, 928 4 (9th Cir. 2011) (“[J]udges are justified in relying on their own knowledge of customary rates and 5 their experience concerning reasonable and proper fees.”); Pop Top Corp. v. Rakuten Kobo Inc., 6 Case No. 20-cv-4482-DMR, 2022 WL 901547, at *3 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 28, 2022) (finding $465.75 7 fee for junior associate who graduated from law school in 2019 and practiced law since 2019 8 reasonable and $538.96 fee for senior associate who graduated from law school in 2012 and 9 practiced for nine years reasonable); In re Yahoo! Inc. Customer Data Sec. Breach Litig., 2020 WL 4212811, at *26 (finding “billing rates for non-partner attorneys, including of counsel, 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 associates, and staff/project attorneys, range from about $160 to $850, with most under $500” 12 reasonable); Xu v. Yamanaka, Case No. 13-cv-3240-YGR, 2014 WL 3840105, at *2, 4 (N.D. Cal. 13 Aug. 1, 2014) (awarding rates ranging from $300 per hour for associate with one year of 14 experience to $850 per hour for partner with over 23 years of experience). 15 b. Hours Expended Airbnb Defendants request a total of 275.80 hours performed by the O’Melveny Attorneys. 16 17 ECF Nos. 60-1, Taylor Decl., at ¶ 12 (259.3 hours for reviewing and investigating the procedural 18 background of this case, filing a motion to dismiss and supporting reply brief, filing a Rule 11 19 Sanctions Motion and supporting reply brief, and filing the instant motion for attorneys’ fees and 20 costs); 79-2, Exhibit 2 (16.5 hours for reviewing Mogan’s opposition to instant motion and writing 21 reply). 22 Mogan argues the requested hours are excessive because the O’Melveny Attorneys did not 23 mitigate expenses by contacting Mogan before filing the Motion for Sanctions. ECF No. 78 at 3. 24 “The duty to mitigate, however, does not require a party to take actions that would impair its 25 rights.” Seith v. Atlantic Fin. Sav. Bank, 15 F.3d 1089, 1091 (9th Cir. 1994). Given the history of 26 this case, the Court declines to reduce the requested hours for this reason. 27 28 Next, Mogan argues Airbnb Defendants failed to provide sufficient and contemporaneous time records or billing summaries. ECF No. 78. at 7-14. Mogan objects to Airbnb Defendants’ 5 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 6 of 11 1 declaration and exhibit filed in support of Airbnb Defendants’ reply as inadmissible hearsay, 2 vague, not the best evidence, and irrelevant. ECF No. 81. Mogan requests either an evidentiary 3 hearing or supplemental briefing to address time entries, invoices, and payments in this case. Id. 4 at 2. 5 The Court finds Airbnb Defendants’ supporting declarations and exhibits, which include 6 itemized billing records, to be sufficient evidence of the O’Melveny Attorneys’ billing practices. 7 Attorneys seeking fee awards are “not required to record in great detail how each minute of [their] 8 time was expended.” Hensley v. Eckerhart, 461 U.S. 424, 437 n.12 (1983). Attorneys need only 9 “keep records in sufficient detail that a neutral judge can make a fair evaluation of the time expended, the nature and need for the service, and the reasonable fees to be allowed.” Id. at 441 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 (Burger, C.J., concurring). Moreover, declarations and itemized billing exhibits are appropriate 12 evidence of the O’Melveny Attorneys’ hours and rates. See Cardoso v. FCA US LLC, Case No. 13 20-cv-2250-JSC, 2021 WL 1176532, at *2 (N.D. Cal., Mar. 29, 2021) (denying “24 boilerplate 14 evidentiary objections” to declaration submitted in support of motion for attorneys’ fees). 15 Accordingly, the Court OVERRULES Mogan’s objections and DENIES Mogan’s request for an 16 evidentiary hearing and supplemental briefing. 17 The Court now evaluates the O’Melveny Attorneys’ billing records. Vogel v. Harbor 18 Plaza Ctr., LLC., 893 F.3d 1152, 1160 (9th Cir. 2018) (“In a case in which a defendant fails to 19 appear or otherwise defend itself, however, the burden of scrutinizing an attorney's fee request— 20 like other burdens—necessarily shifts to the court.”) The Court has “a duty to ensure that claims 21 for attorneys’ fees are reasonable . . . and [the Court] does not discharge that duty simply by taking 22 at face value the word of the prevailing party's lawyer for the number of hours expended on the 23 case.” Id. (internal citations and quotations omitted). “A district court should exclude from the 24 lodestar amount hours that are not reasonably expended because they are excessive, redundant, or 25 otherwise unnecessary.” Van Gerwen v. Guarantee Mut. Life Co., 214 F.3d 1041, 1045 (9th Cir. 26 2000) (internal citation and quotation omitted). The Court is afforded “considerable deference” in 27 determining what hours claimed by counsel are excessive, redundant, or otherwise unnecessary 28 and must only provide a “concise but clear explanation of its reasons” if it reduces the number of 6 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 7 of 11 1 hours included in a fee award. Tahara v. Matson Terminals, Inc., 511 F.3d 950, 955-56 (9th Cir. 2 2007) (internal citation and quotations omitted). After carefully reviewing the O’Melveny Attorneys’ billing records, the Court finds the 3 requested costs reasonable. The Court finds the billed hours reasonable except as follows. Taylor 5 billed 3.8 hours to “strategize regarding briefing,” “confer with prior counsel,” and “call with prior 6 counsel and client” for “(MCCLUSKY)” matters. However, all other hours in this case were 7 billed for “(MOGAN)” matters. Although the history of this case involves Airbnb’s decision to 8 forbid Veronica McClusky from acting as a host for Airbnb, Airbnb Defendants fail to explain 9 how that history justifies billing McClusky matters against Mogan.2 The Court therefore finds the 10 hours billed to “(MCCLUSKY)” rather than “(MOGAN)” unreasonable. See Hensley, 461 U.S. at 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 4 424 (“Hours that are not properly billed to one’s client also are not properly billed to one’s 12 adversary pursuant to statutory authority.”). 13 c. Inability to Pay 14 Mogan argues he is unable to pay sanctions.3 ECF No. 78 at 14. 15 Although “[t]he ability of a party to pay is one factor a court should consider when 16 imposing sanctions[,] . . . the sanctioned party has the burden to produce evidence of inability to 17 pay.” Gaskell v. Weir, 10 F.3d 626 (9th Cir. 1993). Here, Mogan only provides his declaration 18 discussing the status of his accounts, properties, and debts. ECF No. 78-1. The declaration is 19 based on Mogan’s “information and belief” and fails to provide sufficient evidence to preclude 20 sanctions of reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs. Id. See Sonic Cable Television of San Luis 21 Obispo v. Creekside Mobilehome Cmty., Case No. 94-55605, 1995 WL 761913, at *3 (9th Cir. 22 1995) (“Although Harmon presented some evidence to the district court that his resources were 23 limited, it was not nearly enough for us to conclude that the court abused its discretion by not 24 reducing the sanctions.”); Hall v. Contra Costa County, Case Nos. 94-15616, 94-15621, 94-16103, 25 26 27 28 “O’Melveny represents Airbnb on several other matters” separate from the instant case. ECF No. 60-1, Taylor Decl. at ¶ 2. 3 Mogan’s opposition includes a single sentence requesting “the Court seal the paragraph” regarding his inability to pay. ECF No. 78 at 2. Mogan has failed to meet the requirements of Civil Local Rule 79-5. The Court DENIES Mogan’s request to seal. 7 2 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 8 of 11 1 1995 WL 15553, at *2 (9th Cir. 1995) (“Canatella . . . clearly made an inadequate showing [of 2 inability to pay]. He relied . . .solely upon his own unsupported declaration concerning his lack of 3 assets, his meager salary as a professor of legal ethics at an unaccredited night law school, and the 4 various outstanding sanctions awards against him.”). Given the nature, scope, and history of this 5 case, sanctions in the form reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs are appropriate. See Hall, 1995 6 WL 15553, at *2 n.4 (“[E]ven if the showing of poverty was credible, it does not necessarily 7 follow that sanctions are improper . . . under Rule 11, where inability to pay is clearly relevant, a 8 moderate sanction might still be appropriate to deter further abuse.”). Accordingly, the Court 9 awards Airbnb Defendants the reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs as discussed in this order. 2. 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 The Court awards Airbnb Defendants reasonable attorneys’ fees of $162,160.20 ([Taylor Summary 12 2021: 22.7 hours @ $935/hour] + [Taylor 2022: 16.6 hours @ 1015.75/hour] + [Cardelús 2021: 13 35.10 hours @ 845.75/hour] + [Cardelús 2022: 12.6 hours @ $ 884/hour)] + [Kambourelis 14 2021/2022: 185 hours @ $450/hour]) and costs of $573.90. 15 IV. SRC DEFENDANTS’ MOTION 16 On January 10, 2022, the Court granted SRC Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss under 17 California’s Anti-SLAPP Statute and ordered SRC Defendants to file a separate motion regarding 18 attorneys’ fees by February 10, 2022. ECF No. 38. SRC Defendants filed their Motion for 19 Attorneys’ Fees on February 11, 2022.4 ECF No. 61. SRC Defendants request a total of 20 $16,399.00 in fees. 5 ECF No. 66-1, Servais Decl., at ¶ 6. 21 A. Legal Standard In any action subject to the anti-SLAPP statute, “a prevailing defendant on a special 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 Mogan argues SRC Defendants’ late filing precludes an award of attorneys’ fees. However, given SRC Defendants’ successful Motion to Dismiss under California’s Anti-SLAPP statute, the Court does not find the late filing sufficient to prevent an award of attorneys’ fees and costs. Cf. Civ. L. R. 7-1(b) (“Motions must be directed to the Judge to whom the action is assigned, except as that Judge may otherwise order.”) 5 SRC Defendants’ billing records, ECF No. 66-2 (Exhibit 2) total $16,745.00 (71.7 hours @ $230/hour). Although the SRC Defendants provide no explanation for this discrepancy, it appears they are not seeking reimbursement for the 0.4 hours spent on January 10, 2022 analyzing the Court’s MTD Order. The Court will consider SRC Defendants’ request for $16,399.00. 8 4 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 9 of 11 1 motion to strike shall be entitled to recover his or her attorney’s fees and costs.” Cal. Civ. Proc. 2 Code § 425.16(c); Equilon Enters., LLC v. Consumer Cause, Inc., 29 Cal. 4th 53, 67 (2002). Fees 3 should only be awarded for work reasonably related to the special motion to strike brought under 4 the anti-SLAPP statute, see, e.g., Christian Research Inst. v. Ulnar, 165 Cal. App.4th 1315, 1320 5 (2008), but fees are also recoverable for the reasonable time spent seeking an award of statutory 6 attorney’s fees, Ketchum v. Moses, 24 Cal. 4th 1122, 1141 (2001). The fee-shifting provision “is 7 broadly construed so as to effectuate the legislative purpose of reimbursing the prevailing 8 defendant for expenses incurred in extracting herself from a baseless lawsuit.” Graham-Sult v. 9 Clainos, 756 F.3d at 752 (quotation omitted). 10 B. Mogan argues SRC Defendants are not entitled to fees because under the Supreme Court’s 11 United States District Court Northern District of California Discussion 12 ruling in Shady Grove Orthopedic Assoc., P.A. v Allstate Ins. Co, 559 U.S. 393 (2010), 6 13 California’s Anti-SLAPP statute does not apply in federal court. ECF No. 77 at 8-20. The Court finds SRC Defendants are entitled to fees. In granting SRC Defendants’ Motion 14 15 to Dismiss, the Court concluded “the conduct that forms the basis of Mogan’s complaint is 16 protected activity under California’s anti–SLAPP statute, and that the litigation privilege applies” 17 and “GRANT[ED] the SRC Defendants’ special motion to strike Mogan’s abuse of process claim 18 against them.” Regarding Shady Grove, the Court observes that the Ninth Circuit has not 19 expressly stated how Shady Grove applies to California’s anti-SLAPP statute. See Makaeff v. 20 Trump University, LLC, 736 F.3d 1180, 1189-1190 (9th Cir. 2013) (4-4 decision) (Watford, 21 Kozinski, Paez, and Bae dissenting) (“California's anti-SLAPP statute creates the same conflicts 22 with the Federal Rules that animated the Supreme Court's ruling in Shady Grove. That intervening 23 decision should have led us to revisit—and reverse—our precedent permitting application of state 24 anti-SLAPP statutes in federal court.”). However, the Ninth Circuit has “previously confirmed 25 26 27 28 In Shady Grove, the Supreme Court set forth the following “framework” for resolving potential conflicts between state laws and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure: a federal court “must first determine whether [the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure] answers the question in dispute[,] [and] [i]f it does, it governs—[state] law notwithstanding—unless it exceeds statutory authorization or Congress's rulemaking power.” Shady Grove Orthopedic Assoc., P.A. v Allstate Ins. Co, 559 U.S. 393, 398 (2010). 9 6 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 10 of 11 that defendants sued in federal courts can bring anti-SLAPP motions to strike state law claims and 2 are entitled to attorneys’ fees and costs when they prevail.” Verizon Delaware, Inc. v. Covad 3 Communications Co., 377 F.3d 1081, 1091 (9th Cir. 2004). The Ninth Circuit has affirmed an 4 award of attorneys’ fees after a successful anti-SLAPP motion. See Graham-Sult v. Clainos, 756 5 F.3d 724, 751-53 (9th Cir. 2014). Moreover, since Shady Grove, courts in this district have 6 awarded attorneys’ fees related to successful anti-SLAPP motions. See Mohazzabi v. Wells Fargo 7 Bank, N.A., Case No. 21-cv-4234-JST, 2022 WL 595878, at *7 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 28, 2022) (“The 8 Court finds that Wells Fargo is entitled to attorney's fees and costs for bringing the anti-SLAPP 9 motion . . . . for a total of $11,069.20”); Moonbug Entm’t Ltd. v. Babybus (Fujian) Network Tech. 10 Co., Ltd., Case No. 21-cv-6536-EMC, 2022 WL 580788, at *15 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 25, 2022) (“The 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 1 Court strikes the state law counterclaims under California's anti-SLAPP statute, and finds that 12 Moonbug is entitled to attorneys’ fees.”); Jiang v. KNTV Television LLC, Case No. 21-cv-1293- 13 LB, 2021 WL 4710717, at *6 (N.D. Cal. Oct. 8, 2021) (“The court strikes the plaintiff's 14 defamation claim under the anti-SLAPP statute . . . grants the defendant's motion for $13,063.36 15 in attorney's fees.”). Therefore, as SRC Defendants prevailed on their anti-SLAPP motion, they 16 are entitled to an award of attorneys’ fees for work reasonably related to their Motion to Dismiss 17 under California’s anti-SLAPP statute. 18 Mogan also argues SRC Defendants’ billing records are vague and insufficient to support 19 an award of fees. ECF No. 77 at 4. The Court reviewed SRC Defendants’ supporting declarations 20 and exhibits and finds the documents are sufficient for the Court’s evaluation of SRC billing 21 practices. See Open Source Sec., Inc. v. Perens, No. 17-CV-04002-LB, 2018 WL 2762637, at *5 22 (N.D. Cal. June 9, 2018) (“An applicant is not required to record in detail how she spends each 23 minute and need only record the general subject matter.”) 24 SRC Defendants seek fees of $16,399.00 (71.3 hours @ $230/hour). The Court conducts a 25 lodestar analysis of the hourly rate and hours expended. Superior Consulting Serv., Inc. v. 26 Steeves-Kiss, 2018 WL 2183295, at *1. 27 1. 28 Here, SRC Defendants submitted the declaration of their counsel, Andy A. Servais, Hourly Rate 10 Case 3:21-cv-08431-TSH Document 82 Filed 05/09/22 Page 11 of 11 1 shareholder at Klinedinst PC, that contextualizes his experience. ECF No. 66-1. Servais has been 2 practiced law in California since 2005, selected as a Southern California Super Lawyer Rising Star 3 in 2015-2017, and litigated several cases in arbitration and in the courts. Id. at ¶ 4. Servais billed 4 at an hourly rate of $230. Id. ¶ 5. This rate is well below the median rage for lawyers of 5 comparable experience doing comparable work in the Bay Area. See, e.g., Jiang, 2021 WL 6 4710717, at *5 (finding rates of $744, $512, and $336 reasonable in anti-SLAPP context); Smith v. 7 Payne, Case No. 12-cv-1732-DMR, 2013 WL 1615850, at *3 (N.D. Cal. Apr. 15, 2013) (finding 8 rates of $465, $365, and $315 reasonable in anti-SLAPP context). Thus, based on the evidence 9 submitted by the SRC Defendants and the Court’s own experience in reviewing requests for 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 attorney’s fees, the Court is satisfied that Servais’s hourly rate is reasonable. 2. Hours Expended The SRC Defendants request 71.3 expended hours. ECF No. 66-2. The 71.3 hours were 13 limited to the work related to the SRC Defendants’ Anti-SLAPP motion, including researching 14 and preparing the anti-SLAPP motion, analyzing Mogan’s opposition, and drafting the reply brief. 15 Id. There is no work that appears duplicative, excessive, or unnecessary. The Court finds the total 16 hours billed are reasonable. 17 18 Accordingly, the Court grants SRC Defendants’ request for attorney’s fees of $16,399.00 (71.3 hours @ $230/hour). 19 20 V. CONCLUSION For the reasons stated above, the Court GRANTS Airbnb Defendants’ Motion for 21 Attorneys’ Fees and Costs and awards reasonable attorneys’ fees of $162,160.20 and costs of 22 $573.90 to Airbnb Defendants. The Court GRANTS SRC Defendants’ Motion for Attorneys’ 23 Fees of $16,399.00. 24 IT IS SO ORDERED. 25 26 Dated: May 9, 2022 27 THOMAS S. HIXSON United States Magistrate Judge 28 11

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