Fee Awards

News & Analysis as of

Settle and Pay? The California Supreme Court Says, “Yes.”

A plaintiff who voluntarily dismisses a lawsuit after entering into a monetary settlement may be a “prevailing party” entitled to costs and fees under California law. deSaulles v. Community Hospital of the Monterey...more

Context Is Everything: Evaluating Different Approaches Toward Attorneys’ Fees Awards Under Copyright Act in Light of Supreme Court...

The Supreme Court will soon hear oral arguments on standards for awarding attorneys’ fees to the winner of a copyright dispute. Currently there are at least three different test being applied by federal courts. Data analysis...more

Court Of Chancery Explains When A Fee Award Is Timely

Avaya Inc. v. Charter Communications Holding Company LLC, C.A. 10568-VCN (January 29, 2016) - Normally, the Court of Chancery does not favor fee applications before the litigation is completed....more

The Next Copyright “Fantasy” is Headed to The Supreme Court

The last time the U.S. Supreme Court tackled the issue of attorneys’ fees under the Copyright Act was in Fogerty v. Fantasy. In that case, John Fogerty was sued for alleged copyright infringement over his song “The Old Man...more

Court Finds Case Exceptional And Orders Submission Of Proposed Fee Award

The court finds that defendant has not established a need for deterrence as a factor in declaring this case exceptional. However, plaintiff’s assertion of infringement by seven additional vehicles two hours before the close...more

Court Awards $11.7M in Attorneys’ Fees In Fund Mapping Case

The court in Tussey v. ABB Inc., No. 2:06-cv-04305 (W.D. Mo. Dec. 9, 2015), a long-running suit alleging that ABB failed to monitor recordkeeping fees and improperly mapped participants’ investments (previously reported on...more

SCOTUS Didn’t Eat EEOC’s Homework

Less than two weeks ago, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a case in which the trial court awarded attorneys’ fees against the EEOC for some $4.7 million. (SCOTUS Benchslap For EEOC On the Way?) While the case is now...more

Seventh Circuit Affirms Approval of Class Action Coupon Settlement Despite “Clear Sailing” and “Kicker” Clauses and Potential...

The Seventh Circuit affirmed a class action coupon settlement involving “clear sailing” and “kicker” clauses and a fee award based on the lodestar analysis rather than the value of the redeemed coupons, and notwithstanding a...more

Seventh Circuit Provides Guidance On Fairness Of Class Action Settlement Agreements And Fee Awards

In In Re Southwest Airlines Voucher Litigation, Case No. 13-3264 (7th Cir. Aug. 20, 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld a fee award to class counsel in a class action that resulted in a “coupon...more

Adverse Costs in Pro Bono Litigation: the SCC Weighs In

Réjean Hinse was wrongfully imprisoned for 15 years for a crime he didn’t commit. Though he was granted parole, he was only acquitted after 30 years and a successful appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada. Hinse sued the...more

Court Of Chancery Explains Recent Fee Award Ranges

First, it explains the reasoning behind the percentages awarded in fees of the recovery won by a successful plaintiff firm. Second, it instructs counsel on how to present their fee request, particularly with respect to the...more

When automatic stay violations require fee awards

In America’s Servicing Co. v. Schwartz-Tallard, 2014 DJDAR 12063, the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit decided an interesting case arising from allegations that a debt servicing entity violated the...more

Procedural Missteps Cause Fifth Circuit to Affirm Judgment, Fee Award

M2 Tech., Inc. v. M2 Software, Inc. - In an unpublished decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that a federal district court did not abuse its discretion in issuing a default judgment and fee...more

Fee award against non-party attorney is thrown out by appellate court

In Suarez v. City of Corona, 2014 DJDAR 12101, the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District decided an interesting case concerning the interpretation of California Code of Civil Procedure Section 1038....more

California Appellate Court Rejects Class Action Settlement Due to Excessive Attorney Fees

Pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered, so the saying goes. As we’ve noted before on Oct. 7, June 5, and Dec. 18, courts are starting to examine attorney fee awards in class action settlements much more closely, and the...more

Interest on costs in Western Australia – a quiet shift from incipitur to allocatur?

There are two key positions regarding when interest on a judgment sum begins to run. The rule that interest runs on costs from the date of the certificate of costs is known as the “allocatur” rule and can be contrasted with...more

Yes, Virginia, It Is Possible To Win A Fee Award Against An Environmental NGO

Last week, Judge Walter Smith, Jr., ordered the Sierra Club to pay more than six million dollars – yes, you read that correctly – to Energy Future Holdings and Luminant Generation, after finding that the Sierra Club’s Clean...more

Getting Your Fees Along the Way

Can’t wait until you win the case to get your attorney fees? Consider seeking an interim fee award based on your success along the way. Awarding interim fees (i.e., a fee award made before the case is completed) is an...more

Should Employers Sue to Recover Attorney’s Fees After Winning a Lawsuit?

Unfortunately, the usual answer is no. After being sued by an employee for discrimination without a scintilla of evidence to support the claim, clients often ask “Can we countersue the employee for attorney’s fees?”...more

Man bites dog: recovering attorney’s fees from vexatious employees

California has a reputation for employment litigation: it is the state where everyone seems to feel obliged to sue their boss for something. While some suits have merit and others are understandable, there are suits...more

Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in Attorney Fee Shifting Cases

As we have reported over the past couple of weeks, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in two cases involving the attorney fees provision of 35 U.S.C. § 285 on Wednesday, February 26. That statute provides that a "court in...more

Supreme Court to Hear Oral Arguments in Attorney Fee Shifting Cases

As we have reported over the past couple of weeks, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in two cases involving the attorney fees provision of 35 U.S.C. § 285 on Wednesday, February 26. That statute provides that a "court in...more

Recent Delaware Chancery Transcripts Emphasize That Materiality Is Key To Fee Awards In Disclosure-Based M&A Settlements

Some corporate practitioners could have the impression that significant fee awards are granted as a matter of course in M&A class action litigation, even where the results obtained by class counsel were supplemental (and...more

Court of Appeals Dismisses Plaintiffs for Failure to Preserve and Increases Defendant’s Taxable Costs (5th Circuit)

Moore v. Citgo Co., LP, 735 F.3d 309 (5th Cir. 2013). In this appellate Fair Labor Standards Act litigation, the class of plaintiffs sought overtime pay for work hours that had been misclassified by the defendant...more

You Can't Always Get What You Want: D. Mass. Awards Small Fraction Of Requested Attorneys' Fees In ZIP Code Class Settlement

In an opinion reminiscent of the famous Rolling Stones song, Judge Richard Stearns on December 26th awarded plaintiffs' class counsel fees of $75,959.00 of a requested amount of $450,000 for work performed in connection with...more

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