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TX Appeals Court: More Evidence, Testimony Needed to Prove Attorney Fees

May 4, 2020 | Posted in : Billing Record / Entries, Expenses / Costs, Fee Award, Fee Expert / Member, Fee Issues on Appeal, Fee Request, Hourly Rates / Hourly Billing

A recent Law 360 story by Michelle Casady, “Texas Panel Orders Redo on Atty Fee Award in Med Mal Case” reports that a Texas appellate court declined to revive the medical malpractice lawsuit of a man who was given a medication that records indicated he was allergic to, holding that he failed to amend an expert’s report supporting his claims.  But the panel agreed the evidence didn’t support the attorney fees awarded to the hospital.

The Sixth Court of Appeals in Texarkana explained that while the attorney representing Christus Good Shepherd Medical Center-Marshall testified that he racked up about $23,800 in fees and costs defending the case, the lawyer failed to give a detailed accounting of who did what over the 105 hours logged on the case.

“Even if the testimony can be construed as setting forth the particular services performed in this case, it does not set forth who performed those services, when they were performed, the reasonable amount of time required to perform the services, or the hourly rate for each person performing the services,” the court wrote.  “Hence, the testimony does not meet the minimum evidence required to support the attorney fee award.”

The suit was sent back to Harrison County District Judge Brad Morin for a redetermination of attorney fees to be awarded.  Christus Good Shepherd had been awarded $15,000 in attorney fees by Judge Morin, according to the opinion.