You won a case by prevailing on a motion for summary judgment.  Therefore, as the prevailing party, the court will award costs to you as a matter of course pursuant to Delaware Superior Court Rule 54, correct?  Generally speaking, YES – but not necessarily ALL of the costs you incurred in the litigation.

In Martin v. National General Assurance Company, C.A. No. N13C-01-020-RRC, decided on November 3, 2014, the Delaware Superior Court (Cooch, J.) (available in its entirety here) awarded the following costs to the defendant, who had prevailed on summary judgment:

  • Court costs (such as filing fees)
  • Costs incurred in obtaining the plaintiff's medical records.

However, the Court denied the defendant's request for an additional $690.33 to cover the cost of a deposition transcript the defendant had attached as an exhibit to its winning Motion for Summary Judgment.  The reason the court denied this request is because the deposition transcript was "not introduced into evidence at trial" as required by Rule 54(f); attaching the transcript as an exhibit to the winning summary judgment motion did not count.  The Court pointed to Delaware Superior Court 54(f) and the case of DIGA v. Troise, 1992 WL 240352 (Del. Super. Ct. Sept. 14, 1992) (finding that depositions, when used for the purpose of pretrial motions, are not "introduced into evidence" under Rule 54(f)).

The bottom line is, as a prevailing party, it is best not to overreach when seeking costs—or else you may end up incurring extra fees to brief the issues!