State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company et al v. Peter J. Hanson, P.C. et al
ORDER AWARDING FEES by Judge Robert S. Lasnik. (SWT)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON
STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE
INSURANCE COMPANY and STATE
FARM FIRE AND CASUALTY
ORDER AWARDING FEES
PETER J. HANSON, P.C. d/b/a HANSON
CHIROPRACTIC and PETER J. HANSON,
This matter initially came before the Court on plaintiffs’ motion to compel better answers
to plaintiffs’ requests for admission. Dkt. # 29. Pursuant to this Court’s order awarding fees and
costs incurred in filing that motion under Fed. R. Civ. P. 37(a)(5)(A), Dkt. # 37, plaintiffs
submitted declarations setting forth the expenses incurred in making their motion to compel,
Dkt. ## 39, 40, 41. Because those declarations failed to demonstrate the reasonableness of the
fees sought, the Court ordered plaintiffs to file an amended statement of reasonable expenses
that more specifically detailed the work performed on the motion to compel. Dkt. # 43. Having
reviewed plaintiffs’ amended submissions, Dkt. ## 44, 45, 46, and the remainder of the record,
the Court finds as follows.
As before, plaintiffs seek attorney’s fees in the amount of $21,067.65, comprising $3,378
for local counsel (3.2 hours at a rate of $375 per hour, plus 8.8 hours at a rate of $247.50 per
Case No. C16-1085RSL
ORDER AWARDING FEES - 1
hour), Dkt. # 45, and $17,689.65 for plaintiffs’ out-of-state counsel (31.1 hours at a rate of $240
per hour; 15.6 hours at a rate of $340 per hour; 13.4 hours at a rate of $355.50 per hour; and 0.9
hours at a rate of $175.50 per hour), Dkt. # 46.
The fee applicant bears the burden of demonstrating the reasonableness of the fees
requested. In their amended declarations, plaintiffs’ counsel have appropriately detailed the
tasks they performed during the hours listed for two general projects: “Preparation and Filing of
Motion to Compel” and “Preparation and Filing of Reply in Support of Motion to Compel.” See
Dkt. ## 45-1, 45-2, 46-1, 46-2.
The Court acknowledges that litigating this discovery motion was complicated by the
number of objections to the requests for admission raised by defendants. The Court also finds
that counsel’s hourly rates are reasonable. Still, the Court concludes that the fees requested
represent an excessive number of hours spent on this discovery motion and reply.
After making appropriate reductions, the Court finds that plaintiffs are entitled to
reimbursement of fees in the amount of $10,530.60, representing $1,689 for plaintiffs’ local
counsel (1.6 hours at a rate of $375 per hour, plus 4.4 hours at a rate of $247.50 per hour) plus
$8,841.60 for plaintiffs’ out-of-state counsel (15.5 hours at a rate of $240 per hour; 7.8 hours at a
rate of $340 per hour; 6.7 hours at a rate of $355.50 per hour; and 0.5 hours at a rate of $175.50
per hour). Defendants shall pay this amount to plaintiffs within twenty-one days of the date of
SO ORDERED this 3rd day of April, 2017.
Robert S. Lasnik
United States District Judge
ORDER AWARDING FEES - 2
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