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Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. JBS USA, LLC

United States District Court, D. Nebraska

May 11, 2015

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION, Plaintiff,
v.
JBS USA, LLC, Defendant.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

LAURIE SMITH CAMP, District Judge.

This matter is before the court on Defendant JBS USA, LLC's ("JBS") Bill of Costs (Filing No. 526), and Plaintiff Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's ("EEOC") corresponding objection (Filing No. 578). For the reasons set forth below the EEOC's objection will be granted in part and denied in part.

BACKGROUND

The EEOC filed suit against JBS under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title I of the Civil Rights Act of 1991 alleging JBS engaged in unlawful employment practices by discriminating on the basis of religion, national origin, and race. (Filing No. 5). The EEOC requested injunctive relief against JBS and also sought monetary relief for several individual employees of JBS - all of whom are from Somalia and are practicing Muslims. The litigation was bifurcated with Phase I addressing claims based on JBS's alleged pattern or practice of religious discrimination and Phase II addressing individual claims for relief.

A bench trial on the Phase I claims was held on May 7-17, 2013. This Court entered Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law in favor of JBS. (Filing No. 516.) JBS filed a Bill of Costs seeking recovery of taxable costs under 28 U.S.C. § 1920. (Filing No. 526.) A ruling on the Bill of Costs was stayed until the post-trial motions were resolved. (Filing No. 530.) A final Judgment was entered on January 27, 2014. After the numerous post-trial issues were resolved, the EEOC filed a partial objection to the Bill of Costs. (Filing No. 579.)

ANALYSIS

"Under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(d)(1), costs other than attorneys' fees are to be awarded to the prevailing party unless the court directs otherwise." Janis v. Biesheuvel, 428 F.3d 795, 801 (8th Cir. 2005). "The losing party bears the burden of overcoming the presumption that the prevailing party is entitled to costs...." 168th and Dodge, LP v. Rave Reviews Cinemas, LLC, 501 F.3d 945, 958 (8th Cir. 2007). So long as the costs are taxable under 19 U.S.C. § 1920, the court is not required to provide a detailed explanation of every cost it awards to the prevailing party. Craftsmen Limousine, Inc. v. Ford Motor Co., 579 F.3d 894, 896-97 (8th Cir. 2009).

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1920 a judge or clerk of the court may tax:

(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 costs of making copies of any materials where the copies are necessarily obtained for use in the case;
(5) Docket fees under section 1923 of this title;
(6) Compensation of court appointed experts, compensation of interpreters, and salaries, fees, expenses, and costs of special interpretation ...

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