Court Awards $45,162 in Fees and Costs for Sanctions Motion, to be Shared Equally by Defendants and Their Counsel
In a follow up to an earlier decision granting in part and denying in part plaintiff’s motion for sanctions, Phoenix Four, Inc. v. Strategic Res. Corp., 2006 WL 1409413 (S.D.N.Y. May 23, 2006), the court evaluated plaintiff’s petition for attorneys’ fees and costs associated with the motion. Plaintiff sought $60,216 in fees and costs, and the SRC Defendants argued that plaintiff was to a maximum amount of only $17,658. The court found plaintiff had included time for reviewing 172 boxes of documents produced late by the SRC Defendants, and that this time was improper since plaintiff’s counsel would have had to review these documents anyway. Since the firm's use of block billing made it impossible to identify the work specifically related to the motion, and separate it from unrelated work, the court reduced the requested total of $60,215.76 by 25 percent. Accordingly, the court granted Phoenix's request for attorney's fees and costs associated with bringing the motion for sanctions in the sum of $45,161.82, to be paid equally by the SRC Defendants and their law firm, Mound Cotton. The court further ruled that the SRC Defendants' share “may not be borne by their insurance carriers.” Apparently, Mound Cotton was free to seek reimbursement from its insurance carrier if there was coverage for such.