Decision no. ... in the matter of fixing reasonable fees for attorneys or agents under the authority of Section 9 of the...

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Material Information

Title:
Decision no. ... in the matter of fixing reasonable fees for attorneys or agents under the authority of Section 9 of the "Settlement of War Claims Act of 1928."
At head of title:
American Commissioner
Physical Description:
v. : ; 23 cm.
Language:
English
Creator:
Mixed Claims Commission, United States and Germany
Publisher:
U.S. G.P.O.
Place of Publication:
Washington, D.C
Publication Date:
Frequency:
completely irregular

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
World War, 1914-1918 -- Claims -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Claims vs. Germany -- Periodicals -- United States   ( lcsh )
Genre:
serial   ( sobekcm )

Notes

Dates or Sequential Designation:
No. 1 -
General Note:
Title from cover.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 004822591
oclc - 50038280
System ID:
AA00008543:00034

Full Text












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AMERICAN


COMMISSIONER


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,MIXED


UNITED


CLAIMS


STATES


REASONABLE


FEES


COMMISSION


AND


GERMANY


FOR


ATTORNEYS


OR


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UNDER


THE


AUTHORITY


SECTION


9 OF


ii~i.:'i
"E:!!1i i


SETTLEMENT OF WAR CLAIMS ACT OF 1928"


DOCKET NO.


7280


Hedwig Meyer, Clainmant


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WhitmMa & Knauth, Inc., Agent


CHANDLER P


.ANDERSON


American Comnvissioner


DECISION NO.


IN THE MATTER OF


U. H. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OUTFICz: 198
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MIXED


CLAMS


COMMISSION,


UNITED


STATES


AND


GERMANY


Established in pursance of the Agreement


between the


United States and Germany of August 10, 1922


CHANDLER P


ANDERSON


Amria Cornntis~iouer


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40


IN THE MATTER OF


REASONABLE


UNDER


THE


FEES


FOR


AUTHORITY


ATTORNEYS


SECTION


OR
9 OF


SETTLEMENT OF WAR CLAIMS ACT OF 1928"


DOCKET NO.


Hedwig

Whitman &d


7280


Meyer, Claimant


Knauth.,


Inc.,


Agent


re-named claimant has duly filed with the American Com-


written


&er agent,


request


Whitman


compensation for
A behalf of and


a reasonable


Knauth


Inc.


paid


of New York City,
re been rendered by
f the claimant, such


ilg of the character described in the provisions of Section


aS 117... /1 f~ A lfa ...j ln 7lrC


AMERICAN


CLAIMS

STATES


DECISION


that he


whatever services ha"


with


the authority ol


I






252


to, respe tively, by Mr. William Marx and Mr, Frederick
givig tahe info nation which they desire to have consider
Oinmissioner as showing the reasonableness of the fee as.e


information has been brought to the


attention of the claims


has


filed a letter in reply, a copy


which


been


transmitted


the tEorneys for theagent.
In this case an award was rendered by this Commission on Novem-


her


1926,


on bthall


claimant,


$13,450,


with


interest


thereon at the rate of five per cent per annum from August 10, 1917,


to the date of payment.


The total amount received by the claimant


from


Treasury


Department


payment


this


award


was


$~2O,7193,78.


The


amount


asked


agent,


which


includes


rkvices of ii a to ney agtz &
bursements, s a sum equal to
8""' .i / s- j i_ : 1 |-


Sommerich,


fifteen


and


expenses and


cent of the amount re-


ceived by the claimant


from


Treasury


Department


in payment


of her award.


The


follow chronological


review


sequence of


events in


this case,


which are pertinent to the present proceeding,


as shown by


the records of this Comiion and by the information filed by the


parties,


will


tend


to elarify


a rather


confused


situation


and


will


assist in determining the authority


of Katz & Sommerich


to act on


behalf


of the claimant before


this


Commission


and


extent


and


value of the services rendered by the agent and its attorneys.
iPrior to and during 1922, Knauth, Nachod & Kuhne was a firm of


kers and brokers in New


its power


attorney


associated


"II:
9r9


SYork City.
depa tment.


Professor


in international matters,


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October
;n #rrnA ,mo


Edwin


were


Mr. Marx was the manager


Katz
M.


Sommerich,


with


Borchard as seci l


its attorneys in claims before


1922


Department


UTn1aaJ


-fr 1..


State,


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Mr. Marx informed her of her right to file a claim


with


mission


and


request,


drew


a petition


in support


I.
thu.


1'*


..December, 1922,


~tnd


other


Knauth


customers


Nachod & Kuhne sent


who


had


claims


against


I this claim-
Germany, a


letter calling


attention


establishment


this


Com-


outlining


miauture of


briefly


evidence


jurisdiction,


required


and


describing


in support of proper


generally


claims.


This


Mer also stated:


Zi&&Soding to our records, you


have a


claim


coming within


the above cate-


4e .ee and we shall be pleased to have the necessary papers prepared for you.
ou .desire to avail yourself of our offer, please communicate with us imme-


|ltely and send us the evidence of citizenship as above stated.


Our charges


filing your claim with the Mixed Claims Commission and all services to the


flltai~iate


collection


thereof will


be 5%


plus attorneys


fees and


disbursements


to exceed an additional 10% on the net amount in dollars so collected.


Ii.Yr !. I.


)ecember 28,


1922


Katz & Sommerich filed


with


the Depart-


.... ntof
.iRas attack
ii torneys


State


~hed


a list


petition


over


Knauth


claims,


Nachod &
including


Kuhne,


claim.


which


The


requested leave to supply at a later date and as soon as it


i possible
*I i* .


gather


the same "


proof


American


citizenship


and


details, proofs and fact


in support of the listed claims.


iOn December 29 the claimant herein signed and verified a petition
-s :


support


of her


claim.


Thi


petition


stated


that


claim


was


Ased


on an inheritance


from


claimant'


father,


Carl


Quarter


died


in Germany


in 1913),


and


was


included


in the


as filed with thi


Commission on December 28 by Knauth, Nachod


Sphne,
'.i ...


" my attorneys in fact."


t1.O January
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1923,


the American Agent


notified


Katz & Som-


*i"ch of the receipt,
i petition and list


L a- -


by reference from the Department of State, of


of


1. 1.~..


claims.


June,


m u-,, -L t.


1923


, Knauth,


Nachod &


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dence


in support of her claim.


On March


the agent


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trnsm 4 it.
a '"
transmitthii


Katz & Sommerich


. December


1922,


, its attorneys, the claimant's


together


with


a certificate of


petition,
naturaliz


verified


has. ^Me yerthe claimant's husband. On March 17 th

water calling the attention of the agent to the absence o
a x 2: xx x x x x yx x xxx ^x


evidence, either that
or that the claimant


the money


in question


was a(


was the wife of Chas. Meyer,


actually on deposit :
seit te papers in


s claim to the American Agent for filing with this Commission.
On October 2, 1924, this Commission rendered Administrative De-


~1SNaR 12


dpalin with esate claims,
iirfl~i'oi'l~iy xf ~nr*i .y & ^I^1nic


by which a basis of liability


Smethd rdeteining" the amounts to be awarded was adopted.


On Fruary 8, 1925,


American Agency wrote to the attorneys


egad to the procedure to be
ha ter, and encosed wtivrs I
S***h ara f n^cq %f~C&^fiE^'A^~-~ f ifW"~ .*^~ r, w m v rs^ W *


Sept ember


:3 the "


agent


applied


:or ex'


obtained


in settling


ecution by
claimant's


claims of tri s


claimant.


signatde t


waivers, and on October 9 the attorneys filed these waivers with the


SAge y.


On December


a conference


between the attorneys, including Profess


representatives of the American and
the claims sted in the petition of


was ha i
or Borchard, and


German Agencies, in regard to


Knauth


Nachod


Kuhne.


a*iesit of this cnerence, many of the claims origiIt ni
i drawn or disised, for lack of evidence or on of o i
"The"laii heei was the subject of an investigation by e rman
^Ca m herein w as..f"U .* 'A.i1 my*..,s\,M. f : y-i *..* I-.'K.y I.F.,LJt*j^/AJj .^ \ Ag Jf ^ ^ J T^&^


,on July t, 1926,


made


a report


offering


to o


th amount of $13,450,


with


interest from


Aunrust 1


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On bly


2 the American


AE -.
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report to the attorneys; and it was
"ht $sixnant and by her accepted.


duly communicated e
On July 31 the ap


Aed this Commission that the award suggested


was "' satisfactory to


the claimant?' Thereafter, on November 8, an awar4 i
nn ~iinlf nf t1ho ln;imnnt "fnri o nomniint.h nhnv mpnt nn f


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S:i ether with a fee commensurate with the services hereunder


P wed by the agent or its attorneys.
.mApril 18, 1928, following the enactment of the Settlement of


tilaims Act of


1928,"


the agent wrote


a letter


the claimant


1i--


.n.-I -.
*1,. ':**.


q


og (1) a form of application for payment of her award,


q tested her


to execute


and


issioner, showing the co
B'.S%. of the amount collected
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return
f letter


for filing


with


addressed


lmzent.


and


a form


which


Treasury
American


nsent and satisfaction with the charge
which includes the fees of our attor-
1 1 I V t i .


:
4hich it requested the claimant to sign and which we intend


4.4.le with
e,','Ii g :* i *
^iiiQ^Br~irtiii6 T3 Tl*(


S.! k* .
Sii is tc


if-* osel, I
' .. *


. namely


4escr!be
i ia
1H:..r1t.


the .Commissioner, thereby, in


payment


award


our opinion, considerably


TEl


advise you [the American Commissioner]


in fact,


Whitman & Knauth


form


letter


is as


that the fee charged by


, Inc., and by Messrs. Katz & Sommerich,


for the preparation and presentation of my claim before the Commis-


15%,


inclusive of disbursements,


satisfactory


to me,


that


waive the right to object to the same within the period of ninety days


ci


by the Settlement of War Claims


Act of 1928.


Although it doe
e.viouly objected


s


appear


that


to the charge of


fifteen


claimant


had


per cent


any


agent


time


's and


tbrneys' fees, suggested by Knauth, Nachod & Kuhne,


$he did not
"$S


in December,


ign or return this form of letter, nor did she exe-


eiiand return to the agent the form of application for payment of
ar award. Instead, she requested the American Commissioner to
*: ... ',.: _
S.a reasonable fee, under the provisions of Section 9 of the Settle-
*


--of War Claims Act of 1928.
"


and she also applied for and re-


direct from


Treasury


Department,


on or about


June


H :the sum of $20,793.78, in payment of her award.
=L. i'"".


aaie claimant states in her letter of August 13,
j:P-'I *0


1928


y, original


agents


were


Knauth


Nachod


& Kuhne.


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firm


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The claimant further states that


n April, 1924,


;he paid the agent


hirein the sum of '$27.50 for services and expenses "from aboi
vember, 1922, to April 1924," for "preliminary work iwic
Nachod & Kuhne performed (and whieh was probably the mos


cul )."


It appears, however that this


payment


represented services


and


expenses


in connection


with


estate


Fritz


Quarter,


claimant


brother,


who died in Germany in 1922,


and has no connec-


tion with the claim before this Commission.
Under the circumstances which appear in this ca
sonable fee to be paid to the agent herein, it is nec
consideration not only the services rendered by it,
ices rendered by its attorneys, Katz & Sommerich, a


.se, in fixing a rea-
essary to take into
but also the serv-
/
nd its predecessor,


Knauth,


Nachod


Kuhne,. in


connection


with


preparation


this claim and


the proceedings


before


this


Commission.


Although


the claimant dealt only with Knauth


Nachod & Kuhne or the agent


herein,
Agency


and not with


their


dealt only with


attorneys, it


these attorneys,


is clear


and


that


with


the American


the claimant


or her


agents.


early


as December,


1922,


claimant


was


formed that the charges of Knauth,


Nachod & Kuhne would be "5%


plus attorneys' fees and


disbursements


exceed


an additional


10%


on the


amount"


collected.


The


claimant


states


that


fol-


lowing the bankruptcy of this firm,


the agent herein


" agreed


to go


on with the claim for a 15%


fee," and at that time she agreed to it.


And in her power of attorney, executed January 31, 1927, the claim-
ant expressly approved a fee for the agent that would cover its costs
and disbursements plus a fee "commensurate with the services ren-
dered by the agent and its attorneys.


The


services


rendered


agent


and


attorneys


extended


through a period of upwards of five years, during which, on account


contingent


character


arrangement


under


which


this


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p3 were employed in over 200 other cases before this Commission,
..*ich awards were rendered, and that in the vast majority of
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.,cases the fee of 6fteen per cent was consented to


in writing oy


Various


HAcan
. i*'.* A .e .*
ic claim a
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...""he exte
nmant hI
able det
^ ^ .


claimants.


Commissioner


Lnts


have


These
and in


requested


consents


have


been


filed


with


ix claims only, including thi


American


claim,


Commissioner


fee to be paid to this agent and its attorneys.


mt and character of the services rendered on behalf of this
lave been outlined at length and are also set out in consid-


il in the affidavits filed in this proceeding.


The claimant


- accepted


Hi:: On the i
thiss cs
i 4 *. : .
?ifrtnpensati
I!ierely bec
Tv'intarily
also because
i:!: JanuarCy
Hi amount ofbf
S":: known to i
:,ported by


H ':.:.:. .

' abIeness


^" o i Now,
B S:
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'!sbleness



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gof the cc
** *.- .


,d the benefits derived from these services.
formation submitted and the facts presented by the record


e,


American


Commissioner


holds


that


on asked by the agent and its attorneys i


ause


the claimant


placed


claim


e she reaffirmed


r31,
the
her.
the


and


impliedly


with


agreed


Knauth,


agreement by


1927, to the agent after the award


award


and


extent of


The reasonableness of the


fact


that


collecting


basis of


an award


Nachod


amount


reasonable, not


time


Kuhne


her power of attorney


was made and


ie services
proposed


payment


so that


was


agent


rendered


were


is also sup-


contingent


services


upon
were


with the certainty of considerable delay in receiving its fee


h the possibility that no fee might ever be paid.


proposed


compensation


is also


justified


The reason-


when


meas-


the value of the services rendered, coupled with the fact that


npensation covers all expenses incurred.


therefore


consideration


the circumstances above set forth, and in view
stated in the general Jurisdictional and Admin-


1rative


Decision


rendered


American


Commissioner


under


te of September 28,


1928


and


after careful


examination and


full


iiicry....,


I


T


I







258


of the amount


ment


in payme]


inclu de


received

nt of th


the claimant


e award


rendered


from


Treasury


on her behalf, the


the services of Katz & Sommerich the


attorney
J


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.. ..


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said
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Ent srd ll expenses and disbursements, and to be ai

Sclaimant ad reeived by ithe ent for itself ai s
agentIfi~Al~ fA- XllAC;UyMt l^L U ~d.c~lll/ ~w


a:s Aie compensation for all services rendered in the prosecution
collection of this claim, as defined by Section 9 of the Settli
.'' S'.* VJ


o Wariimn IdtItI T__ ."


Done at Washington,


D.C


., this 25th day of June, 1929.


CHaNDLER P


. ANDEBSON,


Americca n C o miorsorin,

Mike Ce imas Commnis*Sot


United


States


and


Gennnriy.


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