New Report: Securities Plaintiffs' Attorneys May Be Inflating Hours

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July 19, 2019

A new report released by three law professors found that plaintiffs’ attorneys in securities class actions may be incentivized to inflate their billable hours to justify large fee awards, Law360 reports.

The report, published by New York University School of Law’s Stephen J. Choi, University of Richmond School of Law’s Jessica Erickson, and University of Michigan Law School’s Adam Pritchard, said the current system encourages plaintiffs’ attorneys to bill for hours that don’t necessarily advance the case in order to justify large fee requests. They say there is a “real risk that plaintiffs' attorneys may be running the clock — at shareholders' expense — to bolster their argument for a large fee award.”

"We also find evidence that plaintiffs' attorneys may work less efficiently in cases with the largest stakes," the professors said.