San Jose, CA asked in Personal Injury, Civil Rights, Internet Law and Libel & Slander for Washington

Q: Do lawyers accept anti-SLAPP cases on contingency?

Realizing that this largely depend on the individual case, is it common or uncommon for attorneys to accept anti-SLAPP cases on contingency in states with statutes that require the court to award legal fees in successful anti-SLAPP motions?

2 Lawyer Answers

A: It would be very uncommon to see a contingency fee on an anti-SLAPP lawsuit because their is no guarantee of payment even if the case is successful. Frequently, even in a SLAPP suit, the parties will reach alternative settlement arrangements that do not result in the case going to Court. Even though the case appears to be a SLAPP suit to the Defendant, the lawyer might actually recommend settlement. Even if a case does go to Court and resolve in the Defendant's favor, the Court may still have some discretion to award attorney fees.

SLAPP suits can be incredibly stressful for the individual being sued for this very reason. They have to pay for a lawyer out of pocket to prevent another person (usually a larger wealthier company) from taking advantage of their financial weakness. Seek out an aggressive, well-rounded civil litigator who is prepared to defeat the suit and recover fees.

Many well-rounded civil litigators will work as Plaintiff or Defense counsel depending upon the type of case involved. Sometimes alternative fee agreements can be reached, such as flat fees, or reduced fees until a case goes to trial.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Little Neck, NY

A: Not usually. Contingency arrangements are more often applied where the law firm has a degree of confidence in the outcome and they visualize a recovery that would balance with litigation costs. Good luck

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