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Attorney Fee Agreement

Nebraska Ethics Board Gives Lawyers OK to Accept Bitcoin, with Caveats

More large law firms are accepting bitcoin payments for their legal services, signaling the digital currency’s firmer foothold in corporate America. In the years ahead, cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and blockchain technology will have an impact on just about every private and public institution in the nation.  Understanding and accepting cryptocurrency as a form of payment puts firms in a better position to help a wide variety of clients in many industries.  However, there are important caveats to remember when […]

When securing your fee is not a priority

When securing your fee is not a priority

A recent case before the Utah Court of Appeals saw a law firm challenge a trial court’s ruling that a judgment creditor’s right to a set off takes priority over the firm’s right to rents under an assignment.  The court of appeals ultimately disagreed with the law firm’s argument that, as an assignee, the firm had priority over a judgment creditor.  The appellate court concluded that the law firm merely “stood in the shoes of its assignor,” and, because the […]

Accepting Disputed Funds Can Get You Disbarred

Accepting disputed funds can get you disbarred

The question of whether an attorney may accept payment of his or her fees from disputed funds recently came before the Utah Supreme Court.  The attorney at issue had been disbarred from the practice of law for accepting payment of his fees from funds that he knew or should have known were the subject of litigation and were paid from bank accounts that were the subject of an injunction. Attorney Challenges Disbarment Over Accepting Disputed Funds In In the Matter […]

Labor Commission Fee Rgulation Found Unconstitutional

Labor Commission fee schedule illegal

In 1917, the Utah Legislature enacted the Workers’ Compensation Act.  Under the Workers’ Compensation Act, injured workers are required to forego their common law tort remedies against their employers in exchange for a process by which employers compensate injured workers for workplace injuries regardless of fault.  Shortly after the Legislature passed the Workers’ Compensation Act, the Legislature created the Industrial Commission, which it bestowed with the “full power to regulate and fix the fee charge” of attorneys involved in workers’ […]

Block Billing Practices

Block billing costs attorneys dearly

All attorneys know that tracking and billing time to their clients is an important and inevitable part of working in a law firm.  Most attorneys bill their time in six, ten, or fifteen minute increments, depending on firm policy and/or client directives.  If an attorney fails to bill his or her time to a client, then the firm cannot invoice, and, as a result, the firm does not get paid.  Accordingly, timekeeping, and even more importantly, incremented timekeeping as opposed […]

Bad Faith

Bad faith motion for attorney fees denied in Lauer v. Credit Control Services

In a recent decision, a Utah federal district judge denied a defendant’s bad faith motion for attorney fees arising out of claims brought by the plaintiff.  In Lauer v. Credit Control Services, the court was asked to determine whether the plaintiff filed his claims in bad faith, as well as whether defendant was entitled to attorney fees under either 15 U.S.C. § 1692k(a)(3) or 28 U.S.C. § 1927.  Ultimately, the court ruled that “[b]ecause the entirety of [plaintiff’s] action was […]

Settlement Agreement

Court grants request to enforce settlement agreement in Hunt v. Schauerhamer, et al.

In a recent posting, Christensen & Jensen (“C&J”) wrote about a Utah District Court decision that recognized an attorney’s authority to enforce a finalized, yet unsigned, settlement agreement.  In another recent case regarding an accepted settlement agreement, a Utah District Court was saddled with determining whether to grant or deny Defendants’ request to enforce a settlement agreement and Defendants’ request for attorney’s fees. In Hunt v. Schauerhamer, the district court granted Defendants’ motion to enforce the settlement agreement, holding that […]

fee agreement

What Constitutes an Invalid Fee Agreement?

In a recent case before the Utah Supreme Court, the Court was faced with determining whether an appellant was entitled to attorney fees and whether her counsel’s fee agreement was valid.  In, Dahl v. Dahl, the Supreme Court held that the appellant was not entitled to attorney fees.  Initially, the Supreme Court denied the appellant’s request for attorney fess on the ground that the appellant was not entitled to an award of fees because she failed to demonstrate her financial […]

Arbitration agreements cause Utah District Court to dismiss case and award attorney’s fees against plaintiff in C.R. England v. Swift Transportation Company, et al.

The issue of whether to dismiss a lawsuit on a plaintiff’s Rule 41(a)(2) motion or a defendant’s Rule 12(c) motion, and whether ordering attorney fees against a plaintiff who brought a lawsuit in the face of binding arbitration agreements is appropriate, recently came before a Utah District Court.  According to the court’s opinion, the appropriate vehicle for dismissing the claims against the defendants was plaintiff’s Rule 41(a)(2) motion, and that attorney fees levied against the plaintiff were appropriate pursuant to […]