Pro Per Plaintiffs Who are Attorneys are Not Eligible for Fee Award


In Richards v. Sequoia Insurance Co., 2011 DJDAR 6729 (2011), the California First District Court of Appeal reaffirmed the well established rule that a plaintiff who cannot show payment of legal expenses in defense of a claim cannot recover contractual damages for attorney fees against an insurance carrier.

The court did specifically note that the plaintiffs did not make a claim for Brandt attorney fees to compel the payment of insurance benefits in the case. Under the California Brandt fees doctrine, a litigant who sues an insurance carrier to compel payment of policy benefits is entitled to recover fees which can be fairly allocated to that portion of the case.

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