United States District Court, E.D. Tennessee, Knoxville
DEBORAH R. WAGNER, Plaintiff,
ANDREW M. SAUL, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, Defendant.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
case is before the undersigned pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
636(b), the Rules of this Court, and the consent of the
parties [Doc. 14]. Now before the Court is the
Plaintiff's Motion for Attorney Fees Pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2412 [Doc. 22], filed on August 6, 2019.
Plaintiff requests that the Court enter an Order awarding $3,
791.00 in attorney's fees, costs in the amount of
$400.00, and $24.00 in expenses under the Equal Access to
Justice Act (“EAJA”), 28 U.S.C. §
August 30, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Judgment on the
Pleadings and Memorandum in Support [Docs. 15 & 16], and
on October 15, 2018, the Commissioner filed a competing
Motion for Summary Judgment and Memorandum in Support [Docs.
17 & 18]. The Court entered a Memorandum Opinion [Doc.
20] on July 18, 2019, granting Plaintiff's motion and
denying the Commissioner's motion. Specifically, the
Court ordered that the case be remanded to the Administrative
Law Judge to reconsider Plaintiff's medical improvement
in accordance with the Memorandum Opinion. Plaintiff
subsequently filed the instant motion on August 6, 2019, as
well as an Affidavit in Support [Doc. 23] and Memorandum in
Support [Doc. 24], and the Commissioner filed a response
[Doc. 25] on September 13, 2019, stating that he had no
opposition to the payment of attorney's fees, costs, and
expenses in the amount requested.
before the Court is the Plaintiff's request for
attorney's fees under the EAJA. Four conditions must be
met before fees will be awarded under the EAJA:
1. Plaintiff must be a prevailing party;
2. The Commissioner's position must be without
3. No. special circumstances warranting denial of fees may
4. The application for attorney fees must be filed within 30
days of the final judgment in the action.
See 28 U.S.C. § 2412(d)(1). The Court will
address each consideration in turn.
The Plaintiff is the Prevailing Party
case, the Plaintiff obtained a “sentence four”
remand, which, for purposes of EAJA fees, renders him a
“prevailing party.” See Melkonyan v.
Sullivan, 501 U.S. 89 (1991). Thus, the Court finds the
first condition for granting attorney's fees under the
EAJA has been met.
The Commissioner's Position was without Substantial
satisfy the “substantial justification”
requirement, the Commissioner's position must be
justified “both in fact and in law, to a degree that
could satisfy a reasonable person.” Jankovich v.
Bowen, 868 F.2d 867, 869 (6th Cir. 1989). In this case,
the Commissioner has stated that he does not oppose the
Plaintiff's request for attorney's fees under the
EAJA [Doc. 25], thereby conceding that the Commissioner's
position in this matter was not ...