Awards of E-Discovery Conversion Costs are More than “Small Beer”

Discovery is expensive. But the Fifth Circuit affirmed a district court order making it slightly less so, at least for a prevailing party. As part of a lengthy per curiam decision, the Court approved the use of 28 U.S.C. § 1920 to award costs related to TIFF image conversion, scanning, document formatting, and PDF image conversion. In doing so, the Fifth Circuit likened these costs to those for the “exemplification” and copying of case materials. Although the award of these costs may seem small beer to clients facing thousands of dollars in hosting fees and document review expenses, it is still a welcome attempt at proportionality under the current legal framework.

Source: United States ex rel. King v. Solvay Pharmaceuticals Inc., No. 16-20259 (5th Cir. Sept. 12, 2017) (per curiam)

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