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ProveMyFloridaCase.com > Posts tagged "attorneys’ fees"

Proposals for Settlement and Dismissals WITHOUT PREJUDICE

I have talked about proposals for settlement in a number of prior postings.  (See here, here, and here for a few of these postings.). Proposals for settlement are a vehicle to create an argument for attorney’s fees under Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.442 and Florida Statute s. 768.79.  A party receiving a proposal for settlement has 30 days to accept the proposal.  If they do not, it triggers an argument to recover attorney’s fees from the date of the proposal for settlement on forward based on the amount of the recovered judgment. However, Florida cases have held that even if...

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Just because You Recovered an Affirmative Judgment does NOT Mean you Are the Prevailing Party for Purposes of Attorney’s Fees

The prevailing party in a litigation for purposes of being awarded attorney’s fees is NOT determined by how the money flows at the conclusion of the litigation.  In other words, just because you recovered an affirmative judgment does NOT mean you are the prevailing party for purposes of being entitled to attorney’s fees.  See Skylink Jets, Inc. v. Klukan, 45 Fla.L.Weekly D2829a (Fla. 4th DCA 2020).  To be the prevailing party for purposes of being entitled to attorney’s fees, a party must have prevailed on the significant issues in the litigation.  Id.  And a trial court has broad discretion to...

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Reasonable Attorneys’ Fees’ Expert when Attorney’s Fees are the Damages

Generally, when an attorney is awarded attorney's fees, there is a mini-evidentiary hearing to determine the "reasonableness" of those fees.  Another lawyer--the reasonable attorneys' fees' expert--opines that the rate and hours expended are reasonable.  The opposing party then has its own expert to opine otherwise. Fairly archaic and ridiculous in my opinion.  The fact that fees/costs need to be expended to have a reasonable attorney's fees' hearing has always struck me as a needless task.   Others may disagree. Nevertheless, the reasonable fees' expert is how it is done with another lawyer testifying that the fees incurred by the prevailing...

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Attorney’s Fees on Attorney’s Fees

Can I recover my attorney’s fees for litigating the reasonable amount of attorney’s fees I should be entitled to for prevailing in my lawsuit?  This concept is known as “fees on fees.”  It depends. Generally, [i]t is settled that in litigating over attorney’[s] fees, a litigant may claim fees where entitlement is the issue, but may not claim attorney’s fees incurred in litigating the amount of attorney’s fees.  Nonetheless, certain contractual provisions are sufficiently broad to warrant an exception. The Burton Family Partnership v. Luani Plaza, Inc., 44 Fla. L. Weekly D1720c (Fla. 3d DCA 2019) (internal quotations and citations omitted) (finding bylaws created...

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Two Proposal for Settlement Considerations

A proposal for settlement is a vehicle used to create an argument for the recovery of attorney’s fees from the date the proposal is served on forward if the opposing party does not accept the proposal within 30 days.  In certain circumstances, such as when there is there is no basis to recover attorney’s fees, it can be a useful vehicle to create an argument to recover attorney's fees.   There are also strategic reasons to serve a proposal for settlement at a certain point in time in the litigation.  There are definitely strategic issues that must be considered when serving...

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Mutuality of Obligation when it comes to Contractual Attorney’s Fees

The recovery of attorney’s fees is a creature of contract or statute.  When a party prays for attorney’s fees in a lawsuit, that prayer for relief is based on a contractual basis or a statutory basis to attorney's fees.  Sometimes, contracts include one-way prevailing party attorney’s fees.  In other words, the contract may provide that if one party (typically, the drafter of the contract) has to enforce the contract, the other party has to pay that party’s attorney’s fees and costs.  But, what if the other party has to enforce the contract or prevails in the other party's enforcement action.  ...

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Considerations when Multiple Proposals for Settlement are Served on Separate Defendants

I have previously discussed proposals for settlement / offers of judgment (“proposals for settlement”).  A proposal for settlement is a statutory vehicle pursuant to both Florida Statute s. 768.79 and Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.442 to create an argument to recover attorney’s fees based on the judgment amount.  (See this article for more on proposals for settlement). For a plaintiff (party seeking affirmative relief), the plaintiff must obtain a judgment 25% greater than the proposal for settlement amount. When there are multiple defendants, the plaintiff needs to serve a proposal for settlement on each defendant.  In Cassedy, Jr. v. Wood,44 Fla.L.Weekly...

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Proposals for Settlement ONLY Apply to Claims for Monetary Relief

While there are times I will serve a proposal for settlement to create an argument to recover attorney’s fees, I always tell clients proposals for settlement create nothing more than an argument.  In other words, you cannot bank on actually recovering attorney’s fees because of conflicting case law or case law that finds reasons to invalidate a proposal for settlement. Thus, when I serve a proposal for settlement, I make sure the client’s expectations are tempered.  But, when I receive a proposal for settlement on behalf of a client, I make sure the client appreciates that they can be liable for...

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Incentive for Taking Case on Contingency – the Contingency Fee Multiplier

A recent appellate decision came out regarding contingency fee multipliers--the incentive for taking a case on contingency.   I included a thorough discussion on the requirements establishing a contingency fee multiplier here.  Check out this discussion that goes into establishing reasonable attorney's fees and then the contingency fee multiplier. Notably, in this case, the appellate court affirmed that the elements associated with establishing an entitlement to a contingency fee multiplier are as follows: (1) whether the relevant market requires a contingency fee multiplier to obtain competent counsel (i.e., whether there are attorneys in the relevant market and would have taken the case on...

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Injunctive Relief + Attorney’s Fees Awarded in Favor of an Owner and Against Her Association

Here is a case that may give associations some degree of consternation.  I think it should because it supports permanent injunctive relief against an association to comply with its governing documents when managing or maintaining a surface water management system / stormwater management system.   This case, discussed below, would extend beyond a surface water management system to any covenant in the governing documents.   In Coconut Creek Homeowner's Association, Inc. v. Gonzalez,  43 Fla.L.Weekly D1045a (Fla. 4th DCA 2018), a homeowner sued her homeowner's association for failing to manage the association's surface water management system.  The homeowner sued the association...

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