Fennell v. Commissioner of Social Security
ORDER granting 20 Motion for Attorney Fees. Signed by Magistrate Judge David A. Sanders on 12/6/17. (def)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF MISSISSIPPI
PAMELA HILLEY FENNELL
CIVIL ACTION NO. 3:16-CV-261-DAS
COMMISSIONER OF SOCIAL SECURITY
ORDER AWARDING ATTORNEY FEES
Before the court is the claimant=s motion for payment of attorney’s fees pursuant to the
Equal Access to Justice Act (AEAJA@), 28 U.S.C. ' 2412. In these proceedings, the claimant
sought judicial review of the final decision of the Commissioner of Social Security, denying a
claim for benefits. The court remanded this case to the Commissioner for further proceedings.
The claimant now seeks attorney fees under the EAJA as the prevailing party, asserting the
Commissioner=s position was not Asubstantially justified.@ By the motion and attached exhibits,
the claimant requests an award of $ 6,029.10 in attorney’s fees plus $50.29 travel expense under
EAJA. The plaintiff also seeks court costs of $ 400.00 for filing fees
The defendant agrees that the claimed hourly rate of $ 189.00 per hour is reasonable but
challenges three-tenths of one hour of the total of 31.9 hours claimed by counsel. Plaintiff’s
counsel has claimed twelve minutes for a motion for extension of time and six minutes for the
review of the order granting the extension of time. This is not the first time this defendant has
argued that it should never be required to pay for a request for extension of time. The argument
has not improved with repetition. While multiple requests for extension of time for a single
deadline may be questionable, competent attorneys have to juggle competing deadlines and not
infrequently must get additional time in order to allow them to capably represent their clients.
Time spent in obtaining such extensions is time reasonably spent and reasonably billed. This
objection to the claimed fees is rejected.
IT IS ORDERED that the claimant=s motion for payment of attorney’s fees under the
EAJA is granted and the defendant is hereby directed to pay 6,029.10 for attorney’s fees, plus $
50.29 for expenses. The plaintiff is also awarded $400.00 from the Judgment Fund. While the
funds must be made payable to the claimant, the payment shall be sent to the attorney’s address.
SO ORDERED this the 6th day of December , 2017.
s/ David A. Sanders
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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