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

REVELS VS. BOTTLING GROUP, LLC

Plaintiff’s Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement and Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs and Class Representative Service Award are granted, except that the court approves plaintiff’s attorneys’ fees only in the amount of $450,000. In addition, plaintiff must submit an amended Proposed Final Judgment showing how the parties will comply with CRC Rule 3.771(b), which provides: “Notice of the judgment must be given to the class in the manner specified by the court.”

  • Hearing

    Dec 04, 2020

ANDRES ASCENCIO, ET AL. VS FCA US LLC, ET AL.

Because this case was dismissed with prejudice on August 17, 2020, the Court does not have jurisdiction to rule on the instant motion for attorneysfees. The Court DENIES Plaintiffs’ motion for attorneysfees for lack of jurisdiction.

  • Hearing

    Dec 03, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

MICHAEL JAMES BOGHDAN ET AL VS JACQUELINE PACE ET AL

Motion for AttorneysFees Due to the above order denying Defendant’s motion for relief pursuant to CCP §473(b), the motion for attorneysfees is denied as untimely. Motion for Cost of Proof Sanctions Plaintiff moves to recover cost of proof sanctions pursuant to CCP §2033.420.

  • Hearing

    Dec 01, 2020

ALAMEDA SQUARE OWNER LLC VS THE LOS ANGELES WHOLESALE PRODUCE MARKET, LLC

On September 23, 2020, LAWPM filed the instant Motion for AttorneysFees. On October 8, 2020, Alameda filed a notice of appeal. On November 13, 2020, Alameda filed an Opposition to the Motion for AttorneysFees. On November 19, 2020, LAWPM filed a Reply.

  • Hearing

    Nov 30, 2020

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    other

GEORGE SANTOPIETRO VS JAMES HARDEN, ET AL.

Accordingly, Plaintiff and Cross-Defendant George Santopietro’s Motion for AttorneysFees against Jeff Wiseman and Solimar Management LLC is GRANTED. The Court reduces the attorneys fee award by $12,576, for a total award of $68,677. DATED: November 25, 2020 _____________________________ Hon. Robert S. Draper Judge of the Superior Court

  • Hearing

    Nov 25, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

REGINALD LYLE ET AL. VS DOCTORS HOSPITAL OF MANTECA, INC. ET AL.

The Unopposed Motion for Approval of Class Settlement and Motion for Attorneys Fees and Costs are GRANTED. Jayne C. Lee Judge of the Superior Court Directions for Contesting or Arguing the Tentative Ruling: Tentative rulings for Law and Motion will be posted electronically by 1:30 p.m. the day before the hearing.

  • Hearing

    Nov 20, 2020

  • Judge Jayne Lee
  • County

    San Joaquin County, CA

ANDRES ASCENCIO, ET AL. VS FCA US LLC, ET AL.

SUBJECT: Motion for AttorneysFees Moving Party: Plaintiffs Andres Ascencio and Luis Saul Ascencio Resp. Party: Defendant FCA US LLC Plaintiffs’ motion for attorneysfees is DENIED for lack of jurisdiction. BACKGROUND: This action arises out of warranty obligations regarding the purchase of a 2013 Dodge Charger.

  • Hearing

    Nov 19, 2020

  • Type

    Contract

  • Sub Type

    Breach

JOHN RIOS VS CITY OF BALDWINPARK

Conclusion Rios’ motion for attorneysfees is denied. The City’s request for attorneys’ fees is denied.

  • Hearing

    Nov 19, 2020

  • Type

    Administrative

  • Sub Type

    Writ

JOHN RIOS VS CITY OF BALDWIN PARK

Conclusion Rios’ motion for attorneysfees is denied. C. Motion to Compel Deposition Rios seeks to compel the deposition of Rose Tam (“Tam”), the City’s finance director. 1.

  • Hearing

    Nov 19, 2020

  • Type

    Administrative

  • Sub Type

    Writ

CANYON VIEW LIMITED DBA CANYON VIEW ESTATES VS GMAC MORTGAGE, LLC

F-47 Date: 11/18/20 Case #19CHCV00676 MOTION FOR ATTORNEYSFEES & COSTS Motion filed on 9/21/20. MOVING PARTY: Plaintiff Canyon View Limited dba Canyon View Estates RESPONDING PARTY: Defendant GMAC Mortgage, LLC NOTICE: ok RELIEF REQUESTED: An order awarding Plaintiff its attorneys’ fees and costs as the prevailing party in this action. RULING: The unopposed motion is granted. Plaintiff is reminded to review the 5/3/19 First Amended General Order Re Mandatory Electronic Filing for Civil.

  • Hearing

    Nov 18, 2020

  • Type

    Real Property

  • Sub Type

    Quiet Title

ROSALIE SERRANO VS HYUNDAI MOTOR AMERICA, INC., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, ET AL.

ANALYSIS Motion For AttorneysFees, Costs and Expenses Request For Judicial Notice Defendant requests that the Court take judicial notice of the following: (1) Plaintiff’s Complaint in Rosalie Serrano v. Hyundai Motor America, Los Angeles County Case No. 20STCV19074 filed on May 19, 2020; (2) Plaintiff’s First Amended Complaint in Rosalie Serrano v. Hyundai Motor America, Los Angeles County Case No. 20STCV19074 filed on June 26, 2020; (3) The Complaint filed in Wylie et. al. v.

  • Hearing

    Nov 18, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    other

SAN BERNARDINO CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT, A CALIFORNIA PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT VS. STATE ALLOCATION BOARD, A CALIFORNIA STATE AGENCY

Nature of Proceedings: MOTION FOR ATTORNEYSFEES I. TENTATIVE RULING. The following shall constitute the Court’s tentative ruling on the above matter, set for hearing in Department 27, on Friday, November 13, 2020, at 11:00 a.m.

  • Hearing

    Nov 13, 2020

ESTHERN BAHK VS KIA MOTORS AMERICA INC

Timeliness Defendant contends that Plaintiff’s motion for attorneysfees is untimely. Under California Rule of Curt 3.1702, a notice of a motion for attorney’s fees must be filed and served within the time to appeal—i.e., 60 days after notice of entry of judgment or 180 days after entry of judgment. A dismissal equates to an entry of judgment. (Sonabria v. Embrey (2001) 92 Cal. App. 4th 424, 427).

  • Hearing

    Nov 13, 2020

DALLAS WATSON VS. THE JONES FINANCIAL COMPANIES LLLP

Similarly, depending on the showings made by Plaintiffs' counsel during the hearing on the above-described issues in connection with fees, the Court will determine whether Plaintiffs' Motion for Attorneys' Fees and Costs should be granted, and in what amount.

  • Hearing

    Nov 10, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

ERIC CHARLES JOHNSON VS. COMMISSION ON TEACHER CREDENTIALING, AN AGENCY OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

Nature of Proceedings: MOTION FOR ATTORNEYSFEES I. TENTATIVE RULING. The following shall constitute the Court’s tentative ruling on the above matters, set for hearing in Department 27, on Friday, November 6, 2020, at 2:00 p.m.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

ERIC CHARLES JOHNSON VS. COMMISSION ON TEACHER CREDENTIALING, AN AGENCY OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

COMMISSION ON TEACHER CREDENTIALING, AN AGENCY OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA, Respondent Nature of Proceedings: MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS' FEES I. TENTATIVE RULING. The following shall constitute the Court's tentative ruling on the above matters, set for hearing in Department 27, on Friday, November 6, 2020, at 2:00 p.m.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

CALIFORNIA FIRE CHIEFS ASSOCIATION, INC., A NONPROFIT CORPORATION VS. CALIFORNIA EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES AUTHORITY, A DEPARTMENT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

Nature of Proceedings: MOTION FOR ATTORNEYS' FEES Following is the Court's tentative ruling on Petitioner's motion for attorneys' fees. INTRODUCTION By this action.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

CALIFORNIA FIRE CHIEFS ASSOCIATION, INC., A NONPROFIT CORPORATION VS. CALIFORNIA EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES AUTHORITY, A DEPARTMENT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

Nature of Proceedings: MOTION FOR ATTORNEYSFEES Following is the Court’s tentative ruling on Petitioner’s motion for attorneysfees.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

TRISTAR REALTY GROUP, LLC VS. KOURY ENGINEERING

.: LC104767 Hearing Date: November 6, 2020 [TENTATIVE] order RE: defendants’ motion for attorneysfees as costs on appeal in the amount of $37,632.70 BACKGROUND A. Allegations Plaintiff Tristar Realty Group, LLC (“Tristar”) alleges that it entered into a Professional Services Agreement dated November 11, 2014 with Defendant Koury Engineering & Testing, Inc. (“KET”), whereby KET was to perform inspection and testing services for a construction project at 18131 Ventura Blvd. in Tarzana.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

  • County

    Los Angeles County, CA

HTL AUTOMOTIVE INC VS 1351 ORIZABA AVENUE LLC

Accordingly, the motion for attorneysfees is GRANTED in the sum of $190,923.75 Conclusion: Defendant’s Motion for AttorneysFees is GRANTED in the sum of $190,923.75.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

  • Type

    Personal Injury/ Tort

  • Sub Type

    Fraud

TALLEN VS. KESHEN

A, but it is not separately attached as such] Incorporated by reference into the Final Award is the “Ruling on Respondents’ Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs,” dated January 28, 2019. The Ruling is not attached to the Final Award. It is not attached to the Petition. It is attached to the Opposition Declaration of Attorney Fusselman as Ex. 5. Keshan sought attorneys’ fees and costs in her AAA submission.

  • Hearing

    Nov 06, 2020

PACIFIC WESTERN BANK V. ROBERT W. TAKKEN

Now before the Court is Plaintiff’s motion for attorneysfees and costs in the amount of $52,767.50. The Court is not in receipt of an opposition; a proof of service is on file. Plaintiff notes that, after the January 2, 2019 judgment was entered, Defendants filed for bankruptcy, tolling the 60-day period to bring this motion. On June 29, 2020, the bankruptcy court issued a relief from stay, which specifically allowed this motion to proceed.

  • Hearing

    Nov 05, 2020

PATRICK CRAIG, AS TRUSTEE VS CITY OF STOCKTON, ET AL.

On July 17, 2017, Petition filed a motion for Attorneys Fees under CCP 1021.5, the Private Attorney General statute in Craig I. This Court denied the motion. On July 21, 2017, this Court dropped the Ex Parte Application for an Order to Show Cause re: Preliminary Injunction.

  • Hearing

    Nov 05, 2020

  • Judge Jayne Lee
  • County

    San Joaquin County, CA

GUILERMO ESPINOZA VS HEPTA RUN, INC.

Motion for AttorneysFees and Costs Parties’ Positions Plaintiff filed a motion for attorneysfees and costs on 7/21/20, seeking to recover $103,386.50 in attorneys’ fees and $26,867.20 in costs. Plaintiff contends he is entitled to an award of attorneys’ fees because he prevailed on various labor violation claims that carry attorneys’ fees penalties. Plaintiff contends his fees are reasonable and amount to 214.81 attorney hours at the rates of $800/hour (Glick) and $450/hour (Jenkins).

  • Hearing

    Nov 05, 2020

  • Type

    Employment

  • Sub Type

    Other Employment

PATRICK CRAIG, AS TRUSTEE OF THE PATRICK D. CRAIG AND KATHRYN A.CRAIG REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST VS CITY OF STOCKTON, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION ET AL.

On July 17, 2017, Petition filed a motion for Attorneys Fees under CCP 1021.5, the Private Attorney General statute in Craig I. This Court denied the motion. On July 21, 2017, this Court dropped the Ex Parte Application for an Order to Show Cause re: Preliminary Injunction.

  • Hearing

    Nov 05, 2020

  • Judge Jayne Lee
  • County

    San Joaquin County, CA

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