Brodess v. Bagent

Allowable Court Costs for Prevailing Party in Ohio


Ohio motor vehicle victim filed a lawsuit against the negligent driver seeking damages for injuries sustained in the collision. A jury in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas (Ohio) returned a defense verdict. The defendant then moved to tax costs. The trial court sustained in part and denied in part the motion, awarding the motorist $ 1,211 in costs. The plaintiff appealed.

On appeal, the defendant conceded that costs incurred in obtaining copies of video depositions from the injured person were not properly taxed under Ohio Superintendence R. 13(D)(4) and the appellate court agreed. The appellate court found that it was error to award the motorist a "no-show" fee, charged because the plaintiff did not attend a scheduled independent medical examination. The plaintiff gave the defendant sufficient notice of her intent not to attend, such that the appointment could have been canceled. The trial court used a transcript of a videotaped deposition to assist it in ruling on objections and in cuing the objections on the tape. Thus, the use of the transcript fulfilled the "for any other purpose" requirement of Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 2303.21, and the costs were properly charged. The motorist pointed to no statutory authority authorizing the attendance of a court reporter at a deposition to be taxed as costs. Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 2303.21 applied only to the expenses associated with the procuring of a transcript of a deposition, and not to expenses relating to the attendance of the court reporter at the deposition.

The Court of Appeals modified the trial court's entry and decision to $616.50.

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Reference Info:Decision | State, 6th Circuit, Ohio | United States

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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