Microsoft Corp. is disputing lawyer fees for the plaintiffs in class action suits against the software company in Iowa and Wisconsin.
In both cases the parties agreed to a settlement that included the plaintiff's attorney fees up to a certain amount. In the Iowa case, that fee was US$75 million, said Rich Wallis, associate general counsel for Microsoft. However, in late April during a preliminary hearing on approval of the settlement, the lawyers for the plaintiffs asked for $75.5 million. "Which was kind of shocking," Wallis said. "Because they had an explicit agreement that they wouldn't ask for more."
Microsoft also recently had a fee dispute with the same lawyers for a similar case in Wisconsin. In that instance, Wallis said it became clear that the firm was charging for work that was done on the Iowa case, not the Wisconsin case. Included in the fee were charges related to a deposition taken in connection with the Iowa trial at the time that the Wisconsin case was essentially settled, he said.
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