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Attorney Fees in ERISA Litigation


Guest MattNewman
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Guest MattNewman

I thought it would be useful to have a discussion thread examining all of your experiences/info with attorney fee awards to plaintiffs in ERISA cases.

What is your experience within Circuits and Federal District Courts with regards to this? (e.g., are fees awarded absent a showing of the defendants bad faith, are fees chopped down significantly, what about expert costs.) Please name the Circuit and Jurisdiction.

The 8th and 9th circuits presumptively award attorney's fees to prevailing ERISA Plaintiffs. I have seen expert fees awarded in excess of the $45 per day perdium in the 8th circuit, but I also think there is contrary authority for that in this circuit (or perhaps in the 9th).

[This message has been edited by MattNewman (edited 12-31-98).]

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Killer Joe Ribakoff

9th Cir. is not too friendly to a cost bill. They are cool with attorney's fees to the prevailing party under Hummel. Unless plaintiff or counsel are real schmuks, defendant is unlikley to get any.

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Guest MattNewman

In 8th Circuit Ceridian litigation, a contingency based on a pooled fund approach was used. This wasn't my case, but I am aware of the attorney fee award parameters. Unless there is a pooled fund, I think the general rule via S.Ct. precedent is for a loadstar approach.

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Matthew B. Newman, P.A.

ERISA Law Firm

<http://www.erisapro.com>

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