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World Class Technology Corporation v. Ormco Corporation

United States District Court, Ninth Circuit

January 28, 2014

WORLD CLASS TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION, an Oregon corporation, Plaintiff,
v.
ORMCO CORPORATION, a Delaware corporation, Defendant.

OPINION AND ORDER

JOHN V. ACOSTA, Magistrate Judge.

World Class Technology Corporation ("World Class") filed this action against Ormco Corporation ("Ormco") seeking a declaratory judgment that World Class did not infringe on Ormco's intellectual property. Ormco counterclaimed for patent infringement. After several court rulings in World Class's Favor, Ormco appealed the court's claim construction to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and entered into a stipulated judgment of dismissal. Now before the court is World Class's unopposed bill of costs.

Background

World Class filed the present case in March 2013, seeking a declaratory judgment of non-infringement of Ormco's U.S. Patent No. 8, 393, 896. After answering World Class's complaint and filing a counterclaim, Ormco filed a motion for preliminary injunction, which the court denied. World Class Tech. Corp. v. Ormco Corp., ___ F.Supp.2d ___, Civ. No. 3:13-cv-00401-AC, 2013 WL 4050188, at *1 (D. Or. Aug. 9, 2013).

The court's claim construction construed the terms "support surface" and "ledge" according to World Class's proposed construction. Ormco conceded that the court's construction would prevent it from prevailing on its position in the lawsuit. Thus, it filed a notice of appeal and stipulated to entry of the Stipulated Final Judgment ("Judgment"). (Dkt. Nos. 68, 71.) The parties agreed that the Judgment would be entered "without prejudice to any rights the parties have post-judgment and/or the parties' rights to appeal any other aspect of the Court's ruling... as well as any [] future orders issued by the Court." (Dkt. No. 71 at 4.)

World Class now files a bill of costs asking the court to award the following: (1) $350.00 for fees of the clerk; (2) $248.40 for printed or electronically recorded transcripts necessarily obtained for use in the case; (3) $853.05 in fees and disbursements for printing; (4) $651.40 for making copies and demonstrative models; and (5) $90.01 in other costs for a total of $2, 192.86. (World Class Technology Corporation's Bill of Cost ("Bill of Costs") at 1.) The Bill of Costs is accompanied by itemized receipts in support of World Class's claim.

Legal Standard

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(d)(1) provides that costs "should be allowed to the prevailing party" in an action. Rule 54 creates a presumption in favor of awarding costs, but the court retains broad discretion to determine the quantity of costs awardable. Ass'n of Am. Educators v. State of Cal., 231 F.3d 572, 592-93 (9th Cir. 2000), Farrar v. Hobby, 506 U.S. 103, 115-16 (1992). Given the strong presumption in favor of awarding costs, it is "incumbent upon the losing party to demonstrate why the costs should not be awarded." Stanley v. Univ. of S. Cal., 178 F.3d 1069, 1079 (9th Cir. 1999). However, "[t]he court is required to ensure an award's reasonableness, regardless of whether the opposing party objected." Old West Fed. Credit Union v. Skillman, No. 2:11-cv-01170-SU, 2012 WL 4594256, at *2 (D. Or. Sept. 6, 2012) ( quoting Gates v. Deukmejian, 987 F.2d 1392, 1400-02 (9th Cir. 1992)).

Discussion

FED.R.CIV.P. 54 allows recovery of "taxable costs" articulated in 28 U.S.C. § 1920. Under § 1920, the following categories of costs are "taxable":

(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 ...

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