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May 21

Plaintiffs’ attorneys feel heat over large fees in class action cases

The Daily Journal

May 20, 2014 – Brian Kabateck was quoted in a May 20 article in the Daily Journal about negative publicity surrounding a recent $80 million settlement in a class action case over the care of graves and remains at Eden Memorial Park cemetery in Mission Hills. According to the article, the terms of the settlement have been attacked in the media by at least one of the plaintiffs in the case and led to criticism about the fees plaintiffs’ attorneys receive in contingency class actions. The plaintiffs’ attorneys, who litigated the case for 4 ½ years, received $25 million of the $35 million settlement fund.

Kabateck, who does a good amount of contingency work, told the paper that he has seen more and more negative coverage about those types of awards.

“Every single week I read some article about how some plaintiff got 25 bucks while the attorney got millions,” he said. “They always react to the amount of attorney’s fees and think we’re getting paid like this everyday, but this case has been going on for almost five years.”

“On the whole, we don’t educate the public about these types of arrangements well enough,” he added.