DECISION ON ATTORNEYS' FEES AND COSTS 1
NORA BETH DORSEY, Chief Special Master.
On September 17, 2015, Angeline Oldfield ("petitioner") filed a petition for compensation under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, 42 U.S.C. §300aa-10, et seq.,
On September 29, 2016, petitioner filed a motion for attorneys' fees and costs. (ECF No. 34). Petitioner requested attorneys' fees and costs in the amount of $17,289.39 and petitioner's out-of-pocket costs in the amount of $570.58 for a total amount of $17,859.97. Id. at 2-3. In compliance with General Order #9, petitioner has filed a signed statement indicating petitioner incurred $570.58 in out-of-pocket expenses. See Exhibit 22 (ECF No. 35).
On October 13, 2016, respondent filed a response to petitioner's motion. (ECF No. 37). Respondent argues that "[n]either the Vaccine Act nor Vaccine Rule 13 contemplates any role for respondent in the resolution of a request by a petitioner for an award of attorneys' fees and costs." Id. at 1. Respondent adds, however, that she "is satisfied the statutory requirements for an award of attorneys' fees and costs are met in this case." Id. at 2. Additionally, she "asserts that a reasonable amount for fees and costs in the present case would fall between $
On October 18, 2016, petitioner filed an amended motion for attorneys' fees and costs to correct a mathematical error which caused her to list an incorrect total for attorneys' fees and costs that was $300 less than the
On October 18, 2016, respondent's counsel informed the OSM staff attorney by email, copying petitioner's counsel on the correspondence, that respondent waived her opportunity to file a response to petitioner's October 18, 2016 amended motion. See Informal Remark, dated Oct. 21, 2016. Instead, respondent's counsel indicated respondent would stand by her October 13, 2016 response. Id. In response to an inquiry by the OSM staff attorney, petitioner's counsel indicated petitioner wished to file a reply and would do the following morning. Id.
On October 19, 2016, petitioner filed her reply. (ECF No. 39). Petitioner argues that respondent's recommendation of a range for fees and costs based on five other cases with a similar type of injury (shoulder injury related to vaccine administration or "SIRVA") "does not take into account the facts and history of the case at bar . . . and therefore should not be considered." Id. at ¶ 4. Petitioner further argues that "[a]ll attorneys' fees and costs requested by petitioner herein were billed contemporaneously, were necessary for the advancement of this case, and are reasonable." Id. at ¶ 5. Petitioner provides a summary of the fees and costs requested.
The Vaccine Act permits an award of reasonable attorneys' fees and costs. § 15(e). Based on the reasonableness of petitioner's request, the undersigned
The clerk of the court shall enter judgment in accordance herewith.