Bill of Costs Filing Guide

A party awarded costs in a civil action must apply to the clerk for taxation of costs by filing a bill of costs in a form approved by the clerk. The bill of costs must be filed with the clerk and served on any party entitled to such service no later than 14 days after the clerk enters the judgment on the docket, unless otherwise provided by statute or by order of the presiding judge (LR 54.1). The clerk may tax costs defined in 28 USC 1920. Other costs may be taxed only if previously awarded by the presiding judge.

The clerk requires a bill of costs to be filed on the Bill of Costs form available on the court's website. The Northern District of Texas Bill of Costs form lists the following categories:

  • Fees of the Clerk
  • Fees for service of summons and subpoena
  • Fees of the court reporter for all or any part of the transcript necessarily obtained for use in the case
  • Fees and disbursements for printing
  • Fees for witnesses
  • Fees for exemplification and copies of papers necessarily obtained for use in the case
  • Docket fees under 28 USC 1923
  • Costs as shown on Mandate of Court of Appeals
  • Compensation of court-appointed experts
  • Compensation of interpreters and costs of special interpretation services under 28 USC 1828


Pursuant to 28 USC 2412(a)(2), a judgment for costs, when awarded in favor of the United States in an action brought by the United States, may include an amount equal to the filing fee prescribed in 28 USC 1914.

Unless the presiding judge directs otherwise, the Bill of Costs must be electronically filed in the CM/ECF system (LR 5.1(e)). The clerk may tax costs on 14 day's notice. On motion served within the next 7 days, the court may review the clerk's action (FRCP 54(d)(1)). If an objection to the bill of costs is filed before it is taxed, costs will not be taxed until the court reviews the objection and permits the clerk to tax costs.

Please note that the taxation of costs consists only of the clerk's signing and sealing the Bill of Costs form, and entry of the signed and sealed form on the court's docket. The clerk is not responsible for collecting or assisting in the collection of costs. A conformed paper copy of the Bill of Costs will be mailed to the requesting party only if a paper copy and a self-addressed, stamped envelope are provided to the District Clerk’s Office.