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Attorney Fee Award Reduced by 33% Due to Block Billing and Vague Entries

Posted by Judie Bronsther | Mar 03, 2015 | 0 Comments

In BARBU v. Life Insurance Company of North America, Dist. Court, ED New York 2015, Judge Joseph Bianco held that a 33% across-the-board reduction was appropriate because of block billing and vague billing descriptions. The Court noted, “Many of the billing entries on plaintiff's time records are recorded in large blocks of time, and there are numerous entries—often for five, seven, or nine hour increments— which bill for tasks such as "reviewing file" or "reviewing record," without further elaboration. These entries are impermissibly vague, and the Court is unable to review these hours for reasonableness as a result of plaintiff's block billing.”

About the Author

Judie Bronsther

Ms. Bronsther began her career in 1979 as an associate with Finley, Kumble, Wagner, Heine, Manley & Underberg specializing in corporate finance. In 1984, she joined forces with a client, Empire Securities, a brokerage house specializing in oil and gas transactions, and became Executive Vice President and General Counsel. In 1989, she joined Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hayes and Handler. Ms. Bronsther graduated from University of Rochester, magna cum laude, and New York University School of Law. Ms. Bronsther has written extensively on the subject of legal cost control and lectures frequently on this subject.

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