Rigg et al v. City of Lakewood et al
ORDER denying 130 Motion for Costs. By Judge Raymond P. Moore on 12/4/2014.(tscha, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLORADO
Judge Raymond P. Moore
Civil Action No. 11-cv-03044-RM-BNB
JUDY RIGG, as personal representative of the ESTATE OF ROBERT RIGG,
CITY OF LAKEWOOD,
ORDER ON COSTS
THIS MATTER is before the Court on Defendant City of Lakewood’s Motion for Award
of Costs (ECF No. 130) (“Motion”). Plaintiff Judy Rigg (“Plaintiff”), as personal representative
of the Estate of Robert Rigg, brought this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, against Defendant
City of Lakewood (“Defendant”).
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54 makes the award of costs presumptive—i.e: “costs
other than attorneys' fees shall be allowed as a [matter of] course to the prevailing party unless
the court otherwise directs.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 54(d)(1). The Rule affords broad discretion to a
district court judge to grant costs. See Mitchell v. City of Moore, 218 F.3d 1190, 1204 (10th Cir.
2003). The Tenth Circuit has also recognized that certain factors may “justify a district court in
exercising its discretion to deny recoverable costs, including when the prevailing party was only
partially successful when damages were only nominal, when costs were unreasonably high or
unnecessary, when recovery was insignificant, or when the issues were close or difficult.” In re
Williams Securities Litigation, 558 F.3d 1144, 1150-51 (10th Cir. 2009).
Defendant argues that in light of the presumption in favor of an award of costs it should
be awarded them here. It provides no further argument addressing the discretionary factors
outlined above. The Court chooses to exercise its discretion to deny costs in this case. In doing
so, the Court notes that Plaintiff is the personal representative and surviving spouse of Robert
Rigg, the decedent in this case, which originally alleged wrongful death and constitutional
violations. Although all claims against Defendant were ultimately dismissed, the Court does not
find that this civil action was undertaken in bad faith or frivolously, nor has Defendant suggested
as much. The Court bases its decision upon the final factor governing the exercise of discretion
on the award of costs, finding that the issues in this case were close and difficult and that
therefore the award of costs is not appropriate. Defendant’s Motion (ECF No. 130) is hereby
DATED this 4th day of December, 2014.
BY THE COURT:
RAYMOND P. MOORE
United States District Judge
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