Motion for Attorney Fees (Judge Nancy Zeltzer)


Moving Party:  Plaintiff, Eagle Community Credit Union

Responding Party:  No opposition filed

RULING:

Plaintiff Eagle Community Credit Union’s unopposed motion for an award of attorney’s fees is GRANTED.

Entitlement to attorneys’ fees:

Code of Civil Procedure section 1033.5, subdivision (a)(10) authorizes the recovery of attorney’s fees based on contract, statute or law. Further, Civil Code Section 1717, subdivision (a) states: “In any action on a contract, where the contract specifically provides that attorney’s fees and costs, which are incurred to enforce that contract, shall be awarded either to one of the parties or to the prevailing party, then the party who is determined to be the party prevailing on the contract, whether he or she is the party specified in the contract or not, shall be entitled to reasonable attorney’s fees in addition to other costs.”

Here, the Loan Agreement and Consumer Credit Disclosure Statement (“Agreement”) provides for recovery of attorneys’ fees. Specifically, paragraph 7 of the Agreement states: “You agree to pay all court costs, private process server fees, investigation fees or other costs incurred in collection and reasonable attorney’s fees in the course of collecting any amounts owed.” (Anaya Decl., ¶ 3, Ex. A.)

On August 23, 2021, the Court granted summary judgment on Plaintiff’s Complaint in favor of Plaintiff and against defendants Jose Guadalupe Cardenas and Olivia Luna. (ROA No. 35.) Thereafter, on November 3, 2021, the Court entered Judgment in favor of Plaintiff and against Defendants in the sum of $47,587.70. (ROA No. 50.) The Judgement provides for “Attorney’s fees to be determined per noticed motion.” Accordingly, Plaintiff is the prevailing party entitled to attorney’s fees.

Amount of attorney’s fees:

“[T]he fee setting inquiry in California ordinarily begins with the “lodestar,” i.e., the number of hours reasonably expended multiplied by the reasonable hourly rate.” (PLCM Group, Inc. v. Drexler (2000) 22 Cal.4th 1084, 1095.) “The reasonable hourly rate is that prevailing in the community for similar work. [Citation.] The lodestar figure may then be adjusted, based on consideration of factors specific to the case, in order to fix the fee at the fair market value for the legal services provided.” (Id.)

Plaintiff seeks recovery for 21 hours of legal services rendered at the hourly rate of $350. (Armstrong Decl., ¶¶ 5-9.) The hours expended and the hourly rate is reasonable.

The Motion is unopposed. Based on the foregoing, the Court awards $7,350 in attorney’s fees to Plaintiff.

Plaintiff to give notice.