Jakovljevic v. Commissioner of Social Security
ORDER granting Pltf's 19 MOTION for Attorney Fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act, as stipulated by the parties re: 21 Stipulation. (See Order for further details.) Signed by Chief Judge Martin Reidinger on 1/16/2023. (ejb)
THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA
CIVIL CASE NO. 3:21-cv-000654-MR
KILOLO KIJAKAZI, Acting
Commissioner of Social Security,
THIS MATTER is before the Court on the Plaintiff’s Petition for
Attorney Fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act [Doc. 19] and the
parties’ Stipulation to an Award of Attorney’s Fees under EAJA [Doc. 21].
The Plaintiff seeks an award of attorneys’ fees in full satisfaction of any
and all claims by the Plaintiff in this case pursuant to the Equal Access to
Justice Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2412 (“EAJA”).
The parties have
stipulated to an award of $4,700.00. [Doc. 21]. In light of the Court’s prior
remand of this matter, and in the absence of any contention by the
Commissioner that her position was substantially justified or that special
circumstances exist that would render an award of attorney’s fees unjust, the
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Court concludes that the Plaintiff is entitled to an award of attorney’s fees
under the EAJA.
The parties have further stipulated that the EAJA award should be paid
directly to Plaintiff’s counsel as the Plaintiff’s assignee. In support of this
request, the Plaintiff has submitted a fee agreement executed by the Plaintiff,
pursuant to which the Plaintiff has agreed to assign any EAJA fee award in
favor of counsel. [Doc. 19-2]. The Court finds that the Commissioner should
accept this assignment of the awarded fees by the Plaintiff to counsel and
upon receipt of such assignment, the Commissioner will pay that award of
fees directly to Plaintiff’s counsel, provided that it is shown that the Plaintiff
does not owe any debt to the United States Government which is subject to
offset. See Astrue v. Ratliff, 560 U.S. 286 (2010).
IT IS, THEREFORE, ORDERED that:
The Plaintiff’s Petition [Doc. 19] is GRANTED, and the Plaintiff is
hereby awarded attorney’s fees in the amount of Four Thousand
Seven Hundred Dollars ($4,700.00), which sum is in full
satisfaction of any and all claims by the Plaintiff in this case
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2412(d);
Within thirty (30) days of the entry of this Order, or some other
time as determined by the Court upon good cause shown, the
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Commissioner shall inform Plaintiff’s counsel whether the
Plaintiff owes a debt to the Government by which this fee award
may be offset. Before any funds are disbursed to counsel, the
Plaintiff’s counsel shall provide a valid fee assignment to the
In the event that past-due benefits are awarded on remand, the
Plaintiff shall have sixty (60) days after being served with notice
of the past-due benefits award to file for an award of fees
pursuant to the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 406(b); and
No additional Petition pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2412(d) may be
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Signed: January 16, 2023
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