The pro baseball player from Japan fell through a deck while taking a tour around the Marianas Resort and Spa on the Pacific island of Saipan. The pitcher, Kouichi Taniguchi, at first said he felt fine, but two weeks later claimed the collapse hurt him. Bad.
He sued. He sought damages for, among other things, losses on contracts that, he alleged, would have paid him princely sums to promote stuff. But, as the resort's brief on appeal pointed out, the contracts "were all backdated to dates prior to the accident." The brief added, a bit unkindly:
[U]nder these back-dated contracts, a winless, retired journeyman pitcher was purportedly to receive about US $1,200,00 per year for promotional types of activities. Taniguchi testified under oath at his deposition that he never expected to receive the $1.2 million — or indeed anything at all — from these three contracts.
Need Blawgletter say that Mr. Taniguchi never made more than $100,000 a year for pitching? Or that he lost on summary judgment?
The appeal posed the question of whether the cost of translating the contracts from Japanese into English — the official language on Saipan — counted as recoverable expenses under 28 U.S.C. § 1920. The district court held that "costs of special interpretation services" in section 1920(6) covers document translation.
The Ninth Circuit affirmed. The panel disagreed with the Seventh Circuit's view that "interpretation" doesn't mean "translation" and instead embraced the Sixth Circuit's earlier, and opposite, conclusion. Taniguchi v. Kan Pacific Saipan, Ltd., No. 09-15212 (9th Cir. Mar. 8, 2011).