The Association of U S West Retirees



Lawyer asks for $40,500 in legal fees
Kennedy got judge to cut others' $96 million bill
By Jeff Smith
Rocky Mountain News
Thursday, October 12, 2006

The California law firm Lerach Coughlin sought $96 million in legal fees when it engineered a $400 million shareholder class-action settlement with Qwest Communications over alleged securities fraud.  So how much did Denver attorney Curtis Kennedy seek when he prevailed in getting those legal fees slashed to $60 million -- thus providing $36 million more for the shareholders?

Only $40,500.  That's the 90 hours Kennedy spent on the case times his hourly rate of $300 times 1.5, according to a federal court filing this week.

Kennedy, the attorney for the Association of U S West Retirees, also is seeking $24,070 in expenses, virtually all of those for an outside expert's testimony in the case.

Other attorneys might have tried to get a percentage of the $36 million.

"I just think that would be hypocritical after asking the judge to apply moderation" to the $96 million request by Lerach Coughlin, Kennedy said.

Lerach Coughlin officials didn't immediately comment.

As recently as 10 days ago, Kennedy indicated he would probably seek $50,000 for his time.  But on Wednesday, he said he went back through his records to make sure he wasn't charging for his time to study the history of the case.,2777,DRMN_23910_5060190,00.html