House Approves Bill Requiring The Executive Branch To Report Fees Awarded To Prevailing Parties

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Yesterday, the House of Representatives approved the Open Book on Equal Access to Justice Act (H.R. 2919), which would amend existing law to require the Executive Branch to provide an annual report to Congress on the amount of fees and other expenses awarded to prevailing parties, other than the United States, in certain administrative proceedings and civil suits, including certain lawsuits under the Endangered Species Act and other environmental statutes.  The Act would require the report to account for all payments of fees and other expenses awarded made pursuant to a settlement agreement, regardless of whether the settlement agreement is sealed or otherwise subject to nondisclosure provisions.  The Act would also require the United States to create and maintain online a searchable database containing information related to the civil action or administrative proceeding and the award.  The bipartisan bill, which was approved by the House Judiciary Committee on February 5, 2014, was approved by the House after 40 minutes of debate.

 

Topics:  Equal Access to Justice Act, ESA, Litigation Fees & Costs, Proposed Amendments, Reporting Requirements

Published In: Elections & Politics Updates, Environmental Updates

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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