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:
AA00008543:00048

Full Text


















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..AE RCAN* COMMIT SIONE









*UNITED STATES AND GERMANY
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... DECISION NO. o




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.:txu~ .;~ESNA FEES FOR ATTORNEYS OR
UND~IER THE AUTHORITY OF` SECTION 9 OF


XETTE OF WAR CLAIMS ACT OF 1928"
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DOCKET NO. 4681








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"M CHAKEDLE. WANCDEIRSON,















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CLAIMS


COMMISSION


UNITED


STATES


AND


GERMANY


Established in pursuance of the Agreement between the

United States and Germany of August 10, 1922


CHANDLER P. ANDERSON


American Comnissioner


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MIXED


UNITED


CLAIMS


STATES


COMMISSIONER


COMMISSION


AND


GERMANY


DECISION


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ori

n~ra


NO.


IN THE MATTER OF


REASONABLE


UNDER


THE


" SETTLEMENT


FEES


FOR


AUTHORITY


WAR


CLAIMS


ATTORNEYS


SECTION


ACT


OR


9 OF


1928 "


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I*'


DOCKET NO.


4681


'H

ICI:


Trhonwm~s


'wn dci'


- C


and


the .name


George


Birdsong


copartners


doing


Claimants


bove-named


claimants


have


duly


filed


with


American


1.-.


~~sioner a written re qu e st that he ~ x
their attorneys, James C. Clear
~i~s Bt. Steever, of ~ashingtan, D.


i8~':;.r


~i~ts, such services being of the charncter described in


"*: :.


::a


8:B~;i~.w~Ls oP Section 9 of tl~e LL Settlenlent of War Claims Act of ~928.'!
~f~t~i~' blaiihants have objected to the amount of the fee asked by the


AMERICAN


Bil12~o~lg,


B ,lot ir~e~s


Cbaay cm~d Fairbn~ks c~ Steev~ Atto~meys


a reasonable fee to be paid


ry, of New


Yo rk City, and


.? formerly a


partnership


nom
Ijr~ndered


dissolved, as co m pe nsa ti on for w h ate ver services have


by them


on behalf


with


of thi~


and


the authority


w


the pro-


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232


been brought


affidavitt i
attorneys.


reply,


The


the attention of


a copy


attorneys


which


the claimants wo
h s bee i n commui ca e


in addition


have
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filed there


reply to the claimants'


affidavit, and


copies of these


t


three


affidavits


have been sent to the claimants.
The amount of the fee asked by the attorneys as compensation for


their services in.


this case is


twenty-five


cent of the


amount of


the


recovery.


Ten


cent


amount


recovered,


namely,


$2,495.18, has


already


been


paid


by the


claimants


attorneys,


and the balance of the fee asked, namely, fifteen per cent or $3,742.77,


has


been


paid


by the claimants to counsel


for the attorneys and to


counsel for the claimants in trust pending the decision of the Ameri-


can Commissioner in these proceedings. The clh
ever, that "the payment to the attorneys of the


Limants explain, how-
sum of $2,495.18 was


not intended
intended as


as a payment
affording them


services


security


rendered


that


was


amount


simply
a event


the Commissioner made


an award


to them


that


amount or


less.


If the award to the attorneys is less than


that amount


as deponent


believes it should be,


the attorneys are


bound


by the stipulation to


return the excess to the claimants."


No expenses are claimed by the


attorneys for clerical work or cash disbursements on account of this
claim.


this


case


award


on behalf


claimants


was


rendered


by this Commission


on January


14, 1925,


the sum


of $5,548.85,


with interest thereon


February


1917,


rate


date


of five


payment,


cent
and


annum
further


from
sum


of $10,946.28,


with interest thereon at


rate of


five


per cent


anum from November


11, 1918, to the date of payment.


The total


amount paid by the Treasury Department to the claimants in payment


of this award is $24,951.80.


The amount of the award rendered by this


Commission represents


In


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S233
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ievidenced


eber


a letter


1920,


from


which


I


* claimants
claimants


Mr.


agreed


Cleary


dated


pay


partnership


of Fairbank


Steever, of Washington,


erf '" twenty-five per cent


of whatever amount they might


Set"


on the un
contingent


ither state
&ks & Stee


NW *ded

|.: Ery,"


pir L
rj: n:: *
I '': l


that


iderstandin


basis
the ar


that


without


rangement


Sver was that


two-thir
and that


the
any
betw


any


said


retainer.
een Mr.


were


Should
" The
Cleary


"on


attorneys


and


received,, w


a


ds to Fairbanks & Steever and one-third
" this arrangement was known to the claimant


Fair-


s to
to ]


be
Mr.


The claimants admit the making of the above mentioned fee agree-


, t
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'of'* November 29,


1920,


-a


Son the ground that it i


period


when


these


I. Vn


v11:


but object to


excessive


services


fi


but also on


were


rendered


xed thereby not
the ground that


attorney


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Cleary was under an annual retainer which had been


m and


which


called


upon


him


sm, including such services as


L with th:
this case


to a
those


claim, and, therefore,


one-


takes issue with


third share of it
the claimants on


attend


rendered


that in fixin


Should


all l
Iby


legal
him


paid


matters
in con-


the attorneys'


deducted.


point and


Mr.


denies that


. ,g annual retainer agreement with them covers the services rendered
" b. him in this case.
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und


S~luer


re American Commissioner is not in a


thus raised as to


)ensation


whether or not Mr.


services


in fixing the attorneys'


will


confine


himself


addition


fee in
solely


position to pass upon. the


Cleary


entitled


annual


case the American


question


to ask


retainer.
Commis-


determining


w:jr'nhat is a reasonable fee for the services rendered by all the attorneys,
without prejudice to whatever right, if any, the claimants may have


MEg!.
air. -.


WI; 1; r


to refuse to pay
: .In these circu


James C.


Cleary'


instances the Amer


one-third interest in this fee.
ican Commissioner is not called


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234 ;

involved independent inquiry and effort on the part of the attorneys,


and


required


correspondence


and


interviews


merely


with


IB.fi. of the Dbi tan t of State of the


United States and of this


Commission


but also


with


the officials of the Embassies here of the


hree


Gver nments


under


whose


flags


were


registered


respectively


----- -^^k


t CflG~ae lsses
them that h
o: omission


loss,


for which


vessels,


arose.


through
The a


inking


attorneys


Addition to the three items,


i .its award,


they


Swhici
t in th
which


they sought to establi


considered


claimants


C


1


German


forces


e affidavits filed by
were allowed .y.the
ish a fourth it
would have rove


claim, but inasmuch as under their contingent .fee agreement no fee
was to be paid unless a recovery was had, and they were not authorized


the cladimants to


present a claim


for this additional item of loss,


and no recovery was had for such item, the services rendered by them
in that connection can not be considered in fixing their fee in this case.


It is necessary, however,
Alnn ss J- liLlOoal AlwereCX


to examine


services rendered by these attorneys,


in detail


because


the extent of the


as pointed


out by the


American


Commissioner


in his


general


diotional Decision of September 28,


1928


previous decisions in similar proceedings
nud 32)-, where claimants -are entirely co
*-.i ** ** *7 o


Administrative
, and as held by
(Decisions Nos.


mpetent


and


Judes-


him in his


1, 3,


8, 25,


look after their


*own
was


interests


not


in making
in mQ~ll


dontemplated


a fee


agreement


Congress,


with


their


authorizing


attorneys,


American


Comissioner


would disregard an
Stheir attorneys.


K reasonable
agreement


fees
thus


in thes
reached


This interpretation


proceedings,


between


of thi


that


claimants


Act of Congress is


found in


following extract


from


the Report of the Senate Corn-


mitee

Ir


.on Finance,


expectedd,


recommending this feo kfing l


however, that it will not be necessary to alter amounts fixed.


contract


with


large


corporations


others


fully


capable


protecting


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his case the record shows that Birdsong Brothers was a
1 'business, experience and importance, having done business
ew .York City as importers and exporters since 1908, as origi-
.gaized., and since 1914 with the present claimants as copart-


and it i


1% ..... -.. a. ,
that
|i"'"saS deli
interestt


evident


berati


from


claimants
on. and c


The


information


entered


consideredd


claimants


into
that


themselves


this
it


submitted in


fee
was


suggested


this pro-


agreement


with


advantageous


the amount of


.fixed in their agreement with these attorneys, and this agree-


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lade as a result of conferences between the attorney James


and
who


Mr.
was


al manager


thus


James WV
then. and


McGlone


several


Birdson


fixed


was


on the
years


Brothers


less


Rale


than


suggested by the attorney


'rth in a letter dated November


addressed
Birdson


SAttorney
Brothers I


Ibove mentioned.


lawyers of


his claim


nants


erican


James


their


part o
prior
i their
amount


Birdsong


thereto had
attorney in
of the fee


The agreement finally arrived


, 1920, from


Cleary,


general


which
manager


Birdsong


letter


It also appears that the attorney


experience


they


devoted


and


ability


their


and


that


best efforts


in the
the ir


s were
prose-


iterests


, who have no reason to complain about the outcome


Commissioner


the claimants must


ir


own


interests


when


accordingy


regarded


they


holds that in


as fully


agreed


upon


these cir-


capable of pro-


contingent


7 their agreement with these attorneys.


mrefore,


in the circumstances above set


siderations stated


in the


general


forth, and in


Jurisdictional


and


view
Ad-


e Decision rendered by the American Commissioner under


I.


It.of Septei


mber 28,


1928


and after careful


examination and full


FiT


I







236


II lflI ll NiH il iilhil lllilt! 11111
3 1262 08484 2201


song


Brothers,


their


said


atti


banks & Steever, the fee agreed


orneys, James C. Cleary and ]
upon and fixed by the claiman.


their agreement with these attorneys, name
o the amount reeived by the claimants from the
,": s :"


entv-fivAo np.


reasurv


mot in p iht of


their


award,


without


t pre


whtever
aJomes 0.


general


right,


any,


Cleary's one-third


retainer


agreement


claimants
interest i
above r


may


have


n this


nentioied


to refuse to P*k* .:*
to*pq,,,. *, :,,
on account ....o: .i
:. .


ew e t


attorney and these claimants, the said fee to be paid I
'*' M -- / :.'.


and received by the attorneys as full


rendered in the prosecution


and


compensation


collection


of the




Sthe claims


claim,


in Section 9 of the Settlement of War Claims Act of 1928."
Doe at Washington, D. C., this 13th day of April, 1929.


CHANDLER P.
American


ANDERSON,


Commissioner,


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United Stales and Geran p.

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