United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
RULING AND ORDER
A. JACKSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CHIEF JUDGE
the Court is the Motion/Notice of Defendant Woman's
Hospital's Memorandum to Fix Attorney's Fees (Doc.
52). Defendant Woman's Hospital, pursuant to the
Court's order, submitted a memorandum detailing its fees
and expenses, and amended the request. (Docs. 52, 58),
Plaintiff filed a response. (Doc, 55). For reasons explained
herein, Defendant's motion is GRANTED.
April 21, 2016 the Court granted Defendant Woman's
Hospital's Motion for Summary Judgment and advised
Defendant to file a separate memorandum detailing
attorneys' fees and costs. (Docs. 47, 51). The history of
this litigation was documented in this Court's ruling
granting summary judgment and will not be repeated here
except to the extent necessary to address the present motion.
to the suit, Plaintiff was employed by a private security
firm named G4 Secure Solutions, who assigned Plaintiff to
guarding the old Woman's Hospital building. (Doc. 51 at
pp. 1-2). After Plaintiff was not moved to the new
Woman's Hospital building, he alleged that the decision
not move him to the new building was racially motivated, and
brought suit against both G4 Secure Solutions and Woman's
Hospital. (Id. at 2). However, as the Court
recognized in its order granting summary judgment,
Woman's Hospital was not Plaintiffs employer and
therefore could not be held liable under Title VII.
(Id. at 3). The Court previously recognized that
Plaintiffs attempts to hold Woman's Hospital liable
"finds no basis in law or fact." (Id. at
4).Accordingly, the Court dismissed the action
against Woman's Hospital, and ordered it to file a
memorandum detailing its attorneys' fees. (Id.
instant motion, Woman's Health has submitted its records,
seeking an order fixing attorneys' fees in the amount of
(Doc. 58). Defendant asserts that it is entitled to recover
this amount based on the work performed, and because the
Plaintiffs suit was frivolous.
Title VII fee-shifting Statute authorizes an award to a
prevailing defendant. Christiansburg Garment Co. v. Equal
Employment Opportunity Comm 'n, 434 U.S. 412, 421
(1978). This requires more than merely showing that a
defendant is a prevailing party, and instead, the defendant
must demonstrate that the lawsuit was frivolous. Id.
The Court recognized in its motion for summary judgment, and
re-urges here, that Plaintiffs suit against Woman's
Hospital was frivolous, and without legal merit. (See Doc. 51
at p. 4). Accordingly, it is appropriate that attorneys'
fees be awarded to Defendant Woman's Hospital.
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit utilizes the
"lodestar" method for the calculation of
A lodestar is calculated by multiplying the number of hours
reasonably expended by an appropriate hourly rate in the
community for such work. After making this calculation, the
district court may decrease or enhance the lodestar based on
the relative weights of the twelve factors set forth in
Johnson v. Georgia Highway Express, Inc., 488 F.2d
714, 717-19 (5th Cir. 1974).
Heidtman v. Cnty. of El Paso, 171 F.3d 1038, 1043
(5th Cir. 1999) (internal citations omitted). The
Johnson factors, in turn, are:
(1) the time and labor required; (2) the novelty and
difficulty of the issues; (3) the skill required to perform
the legal services properly; (4) the preclusion of other
employment by the attorney; (5) the customary fee; (6)
whether the fee is fixed or contingent; (7) the time
limitations imposed by the client or circumstances; (8) the
amount involved and results obtained; (9) the experience,
reputation, and ability of the attorneys; (10) the
undesirability of the case; (11) the nature and length of the
professional relationship with the client; and (12) the award
in similar cases.
Id. at 1043 n.5.
this litigation, Defendant Woman's Hospital has been
represented by The Kullman Firm. The Court has reviewed the
hourly rates and the time spent by each member of the firm
defending its client and finds the requested fee to be
reasonable in light of the circumstances surrounding this
litigation. Accordingly, the Court finds ...