What is a Motion for Attorney's Fees?

In general, “California follows the ‘American rule,’ under which each party to a lawsuit ordinarily must pay his or her own attorney fees.” “Except as attorney’s fees are specifically provided for by statute, the measure and mode of compensation of attorneys and counselors at law is left to the agreement, express or implied, of the parties....” (Code of Civ. Proc., § 1021.)

The Code of Civil Procedure, section 685.040 provides that attorney fees incurred in enforcing a judgment are recoverable as costs if the underlying judgment included an award of attorney fees to the judgment creditor. The Enforcement of Judgments Law (EJL) entitles judgment creditors to reasonable and necessary attorneys’ fees for enforcement efforts if provided by law. (Code of Civ. Proc., § 685.040.)

Where attorneys fees are permitted by statute as part of an underlying judgment and the statute does not limit the award of fees to those incurred prior to the judgment, post-judgment fees are provided by law. (Berti v. Santa Barbara Beach Properties (2006) 145 Cal.App.4th 70, 77.)

The Court’s Decision

The “black letter law” is that the major factors to be considered by a trial court in fixing reasonable attorney fees include the nature of the litigation and its difficulty; the amount involved; the skill required and the skill employed in handling the litigation; the attention given; the success of the attorney's efforts and his or her learning, age, and experience in the particular type of work demanded; the intricacies and importance of the litigation; the labor and the necessity for skilled legal training and ability in trying the cause; and the time consumed. When the trial court is informed of the extent and nature of the services rendered, it may rely on its own experience and knowledge in determining their reasonable value. Moreover, the exercise of sound discretion by the trial court in the matter of attorney fees includes also judicial evaluation of whether counsel's skill and effort were wisely devoted to the expeditious disposition of the case.

Attorney’s fees are affected by rules covering many types of claims. (e.g., Code of Civ. Proc., § 425.16(c) (“a prevailing defendant on [an anti-SLAPP motion] shall be entitled to recover his or her attorney's fees and costs.”); Code of Civ Proc., § 1717 (attorney’s fees on any action on a contract); Ketchum v. Moses (2001) 24 Cal.4th 1122, 1141 (in FEHA matters, “fees recoverable... ordinarily include compensation for all hours reasonably spent....”).)

The requirements vary by rule and must be looked into.

For example in anti-SLAPP matters the trial court is not constrained by the amount sought by the successful moving parties, but is obligated to award “reasonable attorney fees under section 425.16 [that] adequately compensate[] them for the expense of responding to a baseless lawsuit.” (Robertson v. Rodriguez (1995) 36 Cal.App.4th 347, 361-362; see also Dove Audio, Inc. v. Rosenfeld, Meyer & Susman (1996) 47 Cal.App.4th 777, 785.) The fees awarded should include services for all proceedings, including discovery initiated by the opposing party directly related to the special motion to strike. (Tuchscher Development Enterprises, Inc. v. San Diego Unified Port Dist. (2003) 106 Cal.App.4th 1219, 1248.)

Useful Rulings on Motion for Attorney's Fees

Recent Rulings on Motion for Attorney's Fees

CANYON VIEW LIMITED VS. THE BANK OF AMERICA, N.A.

On October 24, 2017, the court granted Defendants’ motion to strike costs and denied Plaintiff’s motion for attorneys fees. Plaintiffs filed a notice of appeal of the October 24, 2017 order. On April 17, 2020, the Court of Appeal issued a remittitur reversing the order denying the recovery of costs and attorney fees. The motion for attorney fees and costs was filed on July 27, 2020.[1] RULING: Continued.

  • Hearing

    Sep 22, 2020

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    Quiet Title

JOHN BRECKENRIDGE, ET AL. VS PARK WELLINGTON OWNERS' ASSOCIATION

However, Defendant may bring a motion for attorneysfees and costs under C.C.P. §425.16(c). If Defendant brings a motion for attorneysfees and costs, it will be “entitled to ruling on the merits of [the special motion to strike], the result of which will necessarily determine [Defendant’s] right to attorney fees under [C.C.P. §425.16(c)].” (Id. at 218-219.) (June 20, 2019 Minute Order.) Defendant now seeks to recover its fees incurred in relation to its anti-SLAPP motion.

  • Hearing

    Sep 21, 2020

DAKOTA FINANCIAL, LLC VS TIGER TRANS INC., ET AL.

Conclusion Plaintiff Dakota Financial, Inc.’s Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs is GRANTED IN THE AMOUNT OF $7,474.55 ATTORNEY’S FEES AND $1,100.00 COSTS. Moving party to give notice.

  • Hearing

    Sep 21, 2020

  • County

    Los Angeles County, CA

KYRA GROVES ET AL VS MAPLEBEAR INC

Plaintiffs also filed a motion for attorneysfees, costs, and class representative service enhancements. On September 2, 2020, the Court granted: (1) Plaintiffs’ motion for final approval of class action settlement; and (2) Plaintiffs’ motion for attorneysfees, costs, and class representative service enhancements. The Current Motion On June 29, 2020, Spio filed a motion for leave to opt-out of the class in this action.

  • Hearing

    Sep 18, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

MARTINEZ VS. PPSN CORPORATION

Plaintiff’s Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement, and Motion for AttorneysFees, Costs and Expenses, and Class Representative Enhancement Payment, are granted, except that plaintiff must submit a new Amended Proposed Judgment that (1) includes a paragraph stating that after 180 days the amount of any uncashed checks will be sent to the State Controller’s Office Unclaimed Property Fund in the names of the applicable payees, and (2) corrects the date of the settlement agreement at 3:4 from September

  • Hearing

    Sep 18, 2020

DANIEL MARTINEZ VS C & P TRADING, INC., ET AL.

SUBJECT: Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs Moving Party: Plaintiff Daniel Martinez Responding Party: None The Court GRANTS Plaintiff’s unopposed motion for attorneysfees and costs in the amount of $74,653.73 – $71,474.70 in attorneys’ fees and $3,179.03 in costs.

  • Hearing

    Sep 18, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

DANIEL MARTINEZ VS C & P TRADING, INC., ET AL.

SUBJECT: Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs Moving Party: Plaintiff Daniel Martinez Responding Party: None The Court GRANTS Plaintiff’s unopposed motion for attorneysfees and costs in the amount of $74,653.73 – $71,474.70 in attorneys’ fees and $3,179.03 in costs.

  • Hearing

    Sep 18, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

MAAS VS MCKINNON BROADCASTING CO KUSI-TV 51

Defendant McKinnon Broadcasting Company's Motion for Attorneys' Fees and Costs Pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure Section 425.16 is DENIED. (ROA 69.) The anti-SLAPP statute provides the prevailing defendant on such motion "shall" be entitled to recover attorney's fees and costs. (Code Civ. Proc. § 425.16(c)(1).)

  • Hearing

    Sep 17, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

EPIFANIO ROMAN VS GENERAL MOTORS LLC

.: BC716532 Hearing Date: September 17, 2020 [TENTATIVE] RULING RE: PLAINTIFF EPIFANIO ROMAN’S MOTION FOR ATTORNEYSFEES, COSTS AND EXPENSES Plaintiff Epifanio Roman’s Motion for AttorneysFees, Costs and Expenses is GRANTED in the amount of $23,182.50 in attorneys’ fees and $5,704.07in costs. FACTUAL history This is a lemon law action.

  • Hearing

    Sep 17, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

CALIFORNIA HOTEL & LODGING ASSOCIATION VS CITY OF LONG BEACH

Conclusion The motion for attorneysfees is granted. The request for fees is granted in the amount of $68,165. Local 11’s request for costs is denied without prejudice.

  • Hearing

    Sep 17, 2020

3 G I CORPORATION VS CHARLES I SHEEN

SHEEN’S Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs. Defendant Charles I. Sheen’s Motion for AttorneysFees is GRANTED in the amount of $119,690.00. FACTUAL BACKGROUND This is an action for breach of contract. The Complaint alleges as follows. On September 4, 2014, Plaintiff 3 G.I. Corporation (“3GI”) and Defendant Charles I. Sheen (“Sheen”) entered into a contract for 3GI to provide Sheen security services from September 1, 2014 to August 31, 2015. (Compl. ¶ 10.)

  • Hearing

    Sep 16, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

ELLE BI VS TONY E. LUND

Insofar as Plaintiff takes issue with the nature of the fees and costs sought by Defendant, she could have done so in the context of an opposition to a motion for attorneysfees and costs, which has not been filed. Plaintiff has failed to provide a basis for the Court to reconsider its December 3, 2019, ruling granting, in part, and denying, in part, Defendant’s special motion to strike.

  • Hearing

    Sep 16, 2020

COREY GRAY VS GEORGE GELSEBACH ET AL

Defendant’s motion for attorneysfees is GRANTED in the reduced amount of $190,939.00. On December 20, 2016, Plaintiff Corey Gray commenced this malicious prosecution action against Defendants Goerge Gelsebach, William Vallejos, and Michael Klosk. The complaints allege that Gelsebach and his counsel Vallejos and Klosk filed and prosecuted a series of unlawful detainer actions against Gray without probable cause. On December 12, 2017, Gelsebach filed an anti-SLAPP motion against the FAC.

  • Hearing

    Sep 16, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    other

MUHAMET CIFLIGU ET AL VS. AMBITIONS CALIFORNIA, INC ET AL

., et al.’s Motion for AttorneysFees Muhamet Cifligu, et al.’s Motion for AttorneysFees Colliers International Greater Los Angeles, Inc., et al.’s Motion to Tax Costs Muhamet Cifligu, et al.’s Motion to Tax Costs Muhamet Cifligu, et al.’s Motion to File Confidential Agreement Under Seal TENTATIVE RULING Colliers International Greater Los Angeles, Inc., et al.’s Motion for AttorneysFees is granted. Muhamet Cifligu, et al.’s Motion for AttorneysFees is denied.

  • Hearing

    Sep 16, 2020

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    Landlord Tenant

COREY GRAY VS GEORGE GELSEBACH ET AL

Plaintiff’s motion for attorneysfees is GRANTED in the reduced amount of $190,939.00. On December 20, 2016, Plaintiff Corey Gray commenced this malicious prosecution action against Defendants Goerge Gelsebach, William Vallejos, and Michael Klosk. The complaints allege that Gelsebach and his counsel Vallejos and Klosk filed and prosecuted a series of unlawful detainer actions against Gray without probable cause. On December 12, 2017, Gelsebach filed an anti-SLAPP motion against the FAC.

  • Hearing

    Sep 16, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    other

MARIA ORDONEZ ET AL VS AUTO FINANCE SOLUTIONS LLC ET AL

On June 8, 2020, AFS filed a motion for attorneys fees. On September 1, 2020, BADI and Thola filed an opposition. On September 8, 2020, AFS filed a reply. On June 19, 2020, BADI filed a motion to release the cash deposit related to the injunction. On September 1, 2020, AFS filed an opposition. On September 8, 2020, BADI filed a reply.

  • Hearing

    Sep 15, 2020

WILLIAM GLAD VS HONG WASH LLC ET AL

The Judgment is in favor of Plaintiff and against Hong Wash in the amount of $15,000, and specifically states, “Defendant, Hong Wash, LLC will pay to plaintiff, William Glad, reasonable attorneys’ fees and taxable costs that plaintiff, William Glad incurred up to and including to the date of the offer to compromise, February 28, 2020, pursuant to a subsequently filed motion for attorneysfees and costs by plaintiff, William Glad.” On 5/05/20, Plaintiff filed a timely motion for attorneysfees.

  • Hearing

    Sep 15, 2020

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    Landlord Tenant

STEPHEN H. PILLMAN VS. WHITTLEY ARMS COOPERATIVE, INC.,ET AL

Motion for AttorneysFees WAA moves to recover its attorneys’ fees incurred on appeal, as well as fees incurred in connection with this motion for attorneysfees. It seeks to recover fees in the total amount of $21,177.50. It supports its motion with the declaration of its attorney, Steven R. Napoles. Plaintiff opposes the motion. Plaintiff does not contest Defendant’s right to recover fees, but does argue the amount sought is unreasonable.

  • Hearing

    Sep 15, 2020

ENTERPRISE ONE INC VS OKHUI PLUMMER ET AL

The motion for attorneysfees is set for hearing on __________________. On 2/18/20 Plummer obtained a favorable ruling on her summary adjudication motion which disposed of all of the claims against her. Plummer’s motion for attorneysfees was filed on 3/4/20. On 3/6/20 the clerk entered a dismissal of the entire action at Plaintiff’s request. This was in error. No notice was given to anyone.

  • Hearing

    Sep 15, 2020

TREVOR SELKIRK VS GRASSHOPPER HOUSE LLC ET AL

Defendants’ motion for attorneysfees and costs is DENIED. DISCUSSION: Demurrer Meet and Confer The Declaration of Jennifer Morrow reflects that the meet and confer requirement set forth in CCP § 430.41 was satisfied.

  • Hearing

    Sep 15, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

ALPINE EQUIPMENT FUNDING, INC. VS. U.S. SEWER & DRAIN CAYMAN, LTD

., Jeremy Bowman, US Pipelining LLC, and Lisa Bowman Ruling: Plaintiff/Judgment Creditor’s motion for attorneysfees is granted. Plaintiff is awarded attorneys’ fees in the amount of $59,513.50. Plaintiff is to submit a proposed amended judgment including the above attorneys’ fees award by September 28, 2020. Code of Civil Procedure section 685.040 provides a judgment creditor is entitled to the reasonable and necessary costs of enforcing a judgment.

  • Hearing

    Sep 14, 2020

GOLDEN WEST PATIO HOMES OWNERS ASSOCIATION V. KIM

The Association’s Motion for Attorneys fees was accompanied by a Proof of Service indicating that Artedi and Wilhelmina Cortez were served with the Motion for Attorneys Fees by mail at 7024 Lisa Lane, Westminster, CA 92683. 2.

  • Hearing

    Sep 14, 2020

SACRAMENTO COUNTY DEPUTY SHERIFFS ASSOCIATION, ON BEHALF OF ITSELF AND ITS MEMBERS VS. ROBERT BONNER, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY

Such an issue is not before the Court at this time and may be properly addressed via a noticed motion for attorneys' fees.

  • Hearing

    Sep 11, 2020

SACRAMENTO COUNTY DEPUTY SHERIFFS ASSOCIATION, ON BEHALF OF ITSELF AND ITS MEMBERS VS. ROBERT BONNER, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY

Such an issue is not before the Court at this time and may be properly addressed via a noticed motion for attorneysfees.

  • Hearing

    Sep 11, 2020

KAI HOU LIANG VS JI LI

On January 17, 2020, the Court granted BCP Inc.’s motion for attorneysfees against Ji Li. On January 28, 2020, the Court signed and filed the following original judgment: “1. Plaintiff Kai Hou Liang is awarded punitive damages against Defendant Ji Li in the amount of $200,000.00; 2. A constructive trust is imposed in favor of Plaintiff Kai Hou Liang against Defendant Ji Li on all assets and equity of Hollywood Garden, LLC acquired by Defendant Ji Li (collectively, the ‘Property’).

  • Hearing

    Sep 11, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

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