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 Resources for Motion for Attorney's Fees

Recent Documents on Motion for Attorney's Fees

176-200 of 5009 results

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

SUPPLEMENTAL DECLARATION OF D SCOTT MACRAE IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR PREL...

D. Scott Macrae, Esq., California State Bar No. 104663 Lead Case No. SECOND UPPLEMENTAL DECLARATIO OF SCO S UPPORT O M OTION S...

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