Attorney fee request indicates a difference of opinion on plaintiffs' side | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Attorney fee request indicates a difference of opinion on plaintiffs' side

Posted By on Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 4:33 PM

The Wagoner Law Firm Thursday filed its renewed claim for $95,747 in attorney fees for representing plaintiffs in the successful circuit court challenge of the state ban on same-sex marriage. The filing by Jack Wagoner indicates it was filed apart from any claim by Cheryl Maples, another lawyer for plaintiffs and the lawyer who originally filed the case, because of a difference in viewpoint on work done and money owed.

The filing said the Wagoner firm had "insufficient knowledge" as to the time Maples spent on the case. Earlier, she had asked for about $250,000, plus an enhancement of that fee. The filing said the Wagoner firm "performed the vast majority" of the work on the litigation and that the National Center for Lesbian Rights also performed significant work for which it expected no compensation. Unlike Maples, who has sought $85,000, the Wagoner firm is not seeking money for work on the appeal, which wouldn't be up to Judge Chris Piazza to decide.

Wagoner's filing agrees that Maples' claim for money for work on client development seemed excessive because more plaintiffs were recruited than necessary, 40, to present the two classes of people affected — people married in other states and people who wanted to marry in Arkansas. It also agreed with a filing by the attorney general's office that Maples' fee request "appears excessive and unreasonable."

Maples was due to file a fee motion by the end of the day as well. It was not on-line at last check.

UPDATE: John Lynch of the Democrat-Gazette talked with Maples Thursday night. She defended her billings and put down Wagoner's disagreement to unhappiness over a dispute with some of the plaintiffs during the appeal of the state case.

Noted: Though Maples ask for and received an extension until July 30 (Thursday) to file a reply to the state's contest of her fee request, the on-line record indicates she filed nothing by the deadline.

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