Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Taxation of Costs under § 1920 — Video Deposition Costs Unrecoverable Where Summary Judgment Granted and Videos Unnecessary for That

In re Text Messaging Antitrust Litig., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 121804 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 2, 2014):

The law permits a party to recover costs for both a paper transcript and video recording of a deposition; the standard is whether it was reasonably necessary for counsel to obtain both. See Little v. Mitsubishi Motors N. Am., Inc., 514 F.3d 699, 702 (7th Cir. 2008). Plaintiffs argue that the witnesses whose depositions were video recorded were defendants' personnel and that there was no reason to believe they would be unavailable at trial, thus it was not reasonably necessary for defendants to pay for a copy of the video recording as well as the paper transcript. In their reply, defendants do not dispute the factual basis for this argument and thus have conceded it. Their only argument is that plaintiffs' counsel, who took the depositions, had them video-recorded. This is insufficient, however, to make it reasonably necessary for defendants to obtain a video copy. They do not contend that they needed the video versions for their motions for summary judgment, [*25]  and the case never got close enough to trial to make it reasonable to obtain the video recordings for purposes of witness preparation. The Court agrees with plaintiffs that the expenses for the video recordings are not recoverable costs.

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