United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
A. ROSS UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Plaintiffs motion for bills of
costs. (Doc. No. 103). This action was filed by Plaintiff
asserting breach of contract and vexatious refusal to pay
against his insurer, USAA Casualty Insurance. The matter came
before a jury for trial on June 24, 2019. On June 27, 2019,
the jury returned a verdict in favor of Plaintiff.
2, 2019, Plaintiff filed his motion for bill of bosts,
asserting entitlement to costs pursuant to Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 54 and 28 U.S.C. § 1920, in the amount
of $11, 775.60. On July 16, 2019, USAA filed objections to
Plaintiffs bill of costs, specifically taking issue with
Plaintiffs submission of $2, 009.01 for "fees for
exemplification and the costs of making copies of any
materials where the copies are necessarily obtained for use
in the case" without an invoice or any itemization.
filed a reply, attaching an invoice from Document Copy
Service for copies of 19, 208 documents and 412 tabs. (Doc.
No. 105-1). Plaintiff contends that the invoice represents
the total amount for the one-time task for printing the
documents Plaintiff anticipated referencing in Court at
matter is fully briefed and ready for disposition. For the
reasons set forth below, Plaintiffs motion will be granted.
54(d) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that
"costs-other than attorney's fees-should be allowed
to the prevailing party." Cowden v. BNSF Railway
Co., 2014 WL 107844, at *1 (E.D. Mo. Jan 3, 2014).
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920, the Court may tax costs
for: (1) fees of the clerk and marshal; (2) fees for printed
or electronically recorded transcripts necessarily obtained
for use in the case; (3) fees and disbursements for printing
and witnesses; (4) fees for exemplification and the cost of
making copies of any materials where the copies are
necessarily obtained for use in the case; (5) docket fees
under § 1923 of this title; (6) compensation of court
appointed experts, compensation of interpreters, and
salaries, fees, expenses, and costs of special interpretation
services under § 1828 of this title.
Court may not award costs other than those authorized by
§ 1920, because this section "imposes rigid
controls on cost-shifting in federal courts."
Cowden, 2014 WL 107844, at *1 (quoting
Brisco-Wade v. Carnahan, 297 F.3d 781, 782 (8th Or.
2002)). Upon objection by the opposing party as to authorized
costs, however, the Court may exercise its discretion to
grant or deny costs. Id. (citing Pershern v.
Fiatallis North America, Inc., 834 F.2d 136, 140 (8th
54(d) directs that costs, such as necessary photocopies,
'shall be allowed as of course to the prevailing party
unless the court otherwise directs.'" Concord
Boat Corp. v. Brunswick Corp., 309 F.3d 494, 498 (8th
Cir. 2002) (citing Fed.R.Civ.P. 54(d)). "[N]umerous
district courts within the Eighth Circuit have refused to tax
discovery-related copying costs" and have stated that
copies of papers '"necessarily obtained for use in
the case' covers only the 'cost of actually trying a
case in the courtroom.'" Little Rock Cardiology
Clinic PA v. Baptist Health, 591 F.3d 591, 602 (8th Cir.
2009) (quoted case omitted) (no abuse of discretion for
refusal to tax discovery-related copying costs). However,
"[a]mounts sought for copy expenses must be documented
or itemized in such a way that the Court can meaningfully
evaluate the request." Lift Truck Lease & Serv.,
Inc. v. Nissan Forklift Corp., N. Am., No. 4:12-CV-153
CAS, 2013 WL 6331578, at *5 (E.D. Mo. Dec. 5, 2013) (citing
Yaris v. Special School Dist. of St. Louis County,
604 F.Supp. 914, 915 (E.D. Mo. 1985).
Plaintiff submitted a single invoice totaling $2, 009.01 for
the cost of copying 19, 208 documents. Although the invoice
is not itemized, the amount sought encompasses one large
printing task for documents that Plaintiff needed in
anticipation of trial. The Court notes that voluminous
medical records and insurance documents were at issue in this
case. Thus, it concludes that the copies were
"necessarily obtained for use in the case" and will
allow copy costs of $2, 009.01.
does not raise any other objections to Plaintiffs bill of
costs. Because there is no compelling reason to depart from
Rule 54(d)'s standard procedure of awarding the
prevailing party its costs, the Court will award costs to
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiffs motion
for bill of costs (Doc. No. 103) is GRANTED.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that costs shall be taxed against
Defendant USAA Casualty Insurance Company and in favor of