January 28, 2013
Trimming The Fat
The Wyoming Supreme Court has affirmed a district court judge's order reducing by half the payment to an attorney appointed to represent an indigent parent in a parental rights matter.
The court agreed with the district court that some of the attorney's billings were "patently excessive." For instance, the attorney had billed 47.57 hours for a Friday through Sunday.
In order to properly charge the claimed time, he would have to have not eaten, relieved himself or done anything else during the blocked time (citing an earlier case where that point was made).
On this record, we cannot escape the judgment that [the attorney's] litigation efforts became overkill.
The district court's 50% cut was an appropriately "practical means of trimming fat" from the fee application. (Mike Frisch)
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