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Lewis v. Colvin

United States District Court, D. Oregon

November 5, 2014

RASHAWNDA LEWIS, Plaintiff,
v.
CAROLYN W. COLVIN, Acting Commissioner, Social Security Administration, Defendant.

GEORGE J. WALL Law Offices of George J. Wall Portland, OR Attorney for Plaintiff

S. AMANDA MARSHALL United States Attorney ADRIAN L. BROWN Assistant United States Attorney Portland, OR

DAVID MORADO Regional Chief Counsel GERALD J. HILL Special Assistant United States Attorneys Seattle, WA Attorneys for Defendant.

OPINION AND ORDER

ANNA J. BROWN, District Judge.

This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Rashawnda Lewis's Petition (#15) for Fees in which she seeks $5, 608.66 in attorneys' fees pursuant to the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA), 28 U.S.C. § 2412.

For the reasons that follow, the Court GRANTS Plaintiff's Petition and awards to Plaintiff $5, 608.66 in attorneys' fees pursuant to EAJA.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff filed her application for SSI on March 15, 2010. Her application was denied initially and on reconsideration. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) held a hearing on October 21, 2011. At the hearing Plaintiff was represented by an attorney.

The ALJ issued a decision on November 22, 2011, in which he found Plaintiff is not disabled and, therefore, is not entitled to benefits. On August 8, 2013, the Appeals Council denied Plaintiff's request for review, and the ALJ's decision became the final decision of the Commissioner.

This Court reviewed the Commissioner's denial of benefits pursuant to its authority under 42 U.S.C. § 1383(c). After reviewing the record, the Court reversed the decision of the Commissioner on July 23, 2014, and remanded the matter pursuant to sentence four of 42 U.S.C. § 405(g) for further administrative proceedings.

On August 26, 2014, Plaintiff filed her Petition (#15) for Fees under EAJA in this Court. Defendant filed a Response (#16) to Plaintiff's Petition for Fees on September 9, 2014, and Plaintiff filed a Reply (#17) on September 23, 2014.

The Court took the Petition under advisement on September 23, 2014.

STANDARDS

Under EAJA the Court may award attorneys' fees and costs to a plaintiff's attorney in an action against the United States or any agency or official of the United States if "(1) the party seeking fees is the prevailing party; (2) the government has not met its burden of showing that its positions were substantially justified or that special circumstances make an award unjust; and (3) the requested fees and costs are reasonable." United States v. Milner, 583 F.3d 1174, 1196 (9th Cir. 2009)(citing 28 U.S.C. § 2412(d)(1)(A)). See also Perez-Arellano v. Smith, 279 F.3d 791, 793 (9th Cir. 2002). Under EAJA the hourly rate for attorneys' fees ...


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