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New York Billing Rates for Associates Go Up 7.5% From 2011, Compared to Only 3.4% For Partners and 3.6% For Other Counsel.
Recently, a Valeo Partners report has shown that over the past year, billing rates for New York associates have risen by 7.5% from 2011, compared to a 3.4% billing rate rise by partners and 3.4% for other counsel. As it now stands, the average New York associates hourly rate is $551, whereas average hourly rates for partners clock in at $893 and for other counsel at $725.
George Jaramillo Reaches Final Settlement With County of Orange, With Lots of the Settlement Payouts Going to His Attorneys.
On July 26, 2012, the Orange County Register reports that George Jaramillo, the former assistant sheriff/winner of a wrongful termination suit, has reached a settlement with Orange County for a total payout of $947,618. The settlement payouts break out this way: $476,469.62 to Mr. Jaramillo and attorney Joel Baruch to cover the original judgment, attorney fees and accrued interest (in an earlier article, $411,000 in fees was reported as being owing, although we know not if any discounts were given); $120,000 to Mr. Baruch for winning an appeal in the Fourth District, Division 3; $214,069.77 to the Orange County Employees Retirement System (on Mr. Jaramillo’s behalf); and $137,079 to Mr. Jaramillo’s other attorney Michel F. Mills. Also, the County may have some remaining costs for its outside counsel.
Santa Clara County Wants More Transparency On Payments to Court-Appointed Estate Managers/Fiduciaries.
Karen de Sa reports in a July 26, 2012 article in the Mercury News that Santa Clara County’s lead probate supervision Judge Thomas Cain is implementing new procedures that require court-appointed estate managers in probate cases to file monthly statements of their activities and fees for more rigorous scrutiny by the courts.
Ireland and Spain, Too, Have Concerns Over Solicitor/Attorney Costs in Various Cases.
Co-contributor Mike returned from a recent vacation from Ireland, finding out the Europeans are concerned about rising attorney costs in many cases.
For example, a July 18, 2012 Irish Independent article reports that a Spanish divorce between middle-class participants with only a family home could cost over $20,000 each for 3-4 days of court fighting, with the article suggesting these tips: divide property without the use of lawyers/solicitors; do research before selecting a solicitor; consider counseling instead; and listen to your chosen solicitor/lawyer carefully.
Bankrupt businessman Sean Quinn, who had freezing orders put on certain assets by the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation in court proceedings arising out of bank collapses, was still able to obtain rulings from the High Court (the Irish equivalent of our superior trial courts) to unfreeze 430,000 euros to meet the Quinn family’s legal fees incurred from May-July 2012.
Finally, columnist Vincent Browne lamented in a July 2012 Irish Times article that the 430,000 euros lift freeze order in the Quinn matter broke down to payment of fees at these hourly rates: 370 euros per partner; 282 euros for senior solicitors; 227 euros for solicitors; and 97 euros for trainee solicitors. Also, he penned that two senior counsel each were to be paid a brief fee of 20,000 euros plus “refreshers” of 4,000 euro per day, and a junior counsel was to be paid a brief fee of 12,500 euros with “refreshers” of 2,500 euros per day. Mr. Browne noted that the hourly rates were 42 times the Irish minimum wage. He also talked about another case in which senior counsel averaged getting paid 595,238 euros per year, which is somewhat consonant with the going rate for top-notch senior counsel in private practice. Mr. Browne was particularly upset that it is the Irish state that agreed to and will likely pay these hourly rates in the Quinn matter.