United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
November 19, 2004.
PHYLLIS L. HARRIS, Plaintiff,
THE PICTURE PEOPLE, Defendant.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: ARLANDER KEYS, Magistrate Judge
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Plaintiff Phyllis Harris sued her former employer, the Picture
People (the "Company"), alleging violation of the Americans with
Disabilities Act ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq. (West
2004). On August 18, 2004, this Court granted Defendant's Motion
for Summary Judgment, finding that Plaintiff's suit was not
timely filed. Defendant subsequently submitted its Bill for
Taxable Costs, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
54(d)(1). For the reasons set forth below, the Court grants
Defendant its costs.
Plaintiff argues that the Court must deny Defendant's Bill for
Costs, because: 1) it was not filed within 14 days of judgment,
as required by Fed.R. Civ. P. 54(d)(2); and 2) Defendant failed
to show that Plaintiff's case was frivolous or filed in bad
faith. In the event that the Court should find that Defendant is,
nevertheless, entitled to its costs, Plaintiff argues that the costs relating to her deposition should not be
recoverable, as they were not necessary to the disposition of
First, the Court finds that Defendant's Bill for Costs was
timely filed. Although Rule 54(d)(2), and its corresponding 14
day deadline, governs petitions for attorneys' fees, Local Rule
54.1 applies to bills for taxable costs. Local Rule 54.1 permits
a prevailing party to file its bill of costs 30 days from the
entry of judgment. Therefore, Defendant's Bill of Costs, which
was filed 29 days from the entry of judgment,*fn1 was timely
Next, Defendant is not required to demonstrate bad faith to
collect its costs. Rule 54(d)(1) provides that "costs other than
attorney's fees shall be allowed as of course to the prevailing
party unless the court otherwise directs." Fed.R. Civ. P. 54(d).
"The prevailing party is prima facie entitled to costs and it
is incumbent on the losing party to overcome the presumption."
McGill v. Faulkner, 18 F.3d 456, 459 (7th Cir. 1994). This
presumption is difficult to overcome, and the Court must award
costs unless the losing party establishes a reason to deny costs.
Weeks v. Samsung Heavy Indus. Co., Ltd., 126 F.3d 926, 945 (7th
Cir. 1997). In general, a court may deny costs for two reasons: 1) the losing party is unable to pay;*fn2 and 2) the
prevailing party engaged in misconduct. Id. Because Plaintiff
has asserted neither indigence nor Defendant's bad faith, the
Court finds that Defendant is entitled to its taxable costs.
Finally, Plaintiff argues that Defendant should not be
permitted to recoup its costs for taking Plaintiff's deposition,
because it was not necessary to establish that Plaintiff failed
to satisfy the Americans with Disabilities Act's statute of
limitations. Defendant correctly notes, however, that the only
evidence concerning when Plaintiff received her Right to Sue
letter from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC")
was obtained during her deposition. The Court agrees that the
deposition was taken in good faith, and declines to exclude the
costs associated with the deposition. Conclusion
For the foregoing reasons, the Court grants Defendant's Bill of
Taxable Costs in its entirety. The Court finds that Defendant is
entitled to recover from Plaintiff $1,024.87, as follows: (1)
$30.00 for fees for service of summons and subpoena; 2) $697.95
for deposition costs; 3) $1.54 for printing fees; and 4) $295.38
for copying fees.