Lawyers who persuaded Microsoft Corp. to settle their class-action lawsuit accusing the company of price-fixing are asking for $258 million in legal fees, the largest amount ever in an antitrust case. The bill comes as attorney fees are being examined critically by the American Bar Association and lawmakers across the country. It amounts to about $3,000 per hour for one lawyer, more than $2,000 an hour each for 34 other attorneys and $1,000 an hour for administrative work.
Microsoft agreed to the settlement—allocating $1.1 billion for California consumers—after a small San Francisco law firm sued in state court alleging the company inflated prices by monopolizing the pre-installed software market from 1995 to 2001. But Microsoft could end up spending much less. The deal enables anyone who bought a computer in California to get vouchers worth $5 to $29 per Microsoft product, but only a small fraction of the millions eligible have applied for the money.
News source: eWeek