Kirchgessner v. James River Air Conditioning Co.

In a false-claims action, the relator is entitled to attorneys’ fees and costs in the amount of $110,735.

The government and the defendant reached a settlement of the claims, and the relator is entitled to reasonable attorneys’ fees. Contrary to the relator’s argument, the “Laffey Matrix” for attorneys’ rates in the Washington D.C. area is irrelevant to the Richmond area, where rates are considerably lower. D.C. counsel wasn’t necessary in this case, so the court reduces their rates by 20 percent for a reasonable figure in Richmond.

Relator’s counsel also spent too much time on this case, so the court will also reduce the number of hours by 25 percent. The court also will not award fees for briefing on whether the relator was entitled to fees, which was not in dispute.

Motion for fees and costs granted in part.

Kirchgessner v. James River Air Conditioning Co., No. 3:16cv232, Feb. 1, 2019. EDVA at Richmond (Gibney).



Categories: Opinions, U.S. District Court - Eastern District of Virginia

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