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Home / Case Digests / WDNY — Attorney’s Fees: Ozbakir, et al. v. Scotti, et al.

WDNY — Attorney’s Fees: Ozbakir, et al. v. Scotti, et al.

U.S. District Court, WDNY

Attorney’s Fees

Fee Shifting Contract Provisions — RICO Claims

Ozbakir, et al. v. Scotti, et al.
Judge Larimer

Background: The plaintiffs had commenced an action alleging various claims arising out of the sale of commercial property. The case had been removed to federal court as the plaintiffs asserted a claim under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. The defendants’ motion to dismiss had been granted and the court gave the plaintiffs leave to file an amended complaint. The plaintiffs opted to not file. The defendants then moved for an order awarding them attorney’s fees based on the fee shifting provisions in the purchase agreement for the property.

Ruling: The District Court granted the defendants’ motion in part and denied in part. The court found that the fee shifting provision covered the claims in the case because the provision was broadly worded and could not be limited to mere breach of contract claims. Further, the plaintiffs’ RICO claim was related to the purchase and sale of the commercial property as the plaintiffs own allegations admit. The court, however, reduced the amount of attorney’s fees requested by the defendants.

Kimberley A. Steele for the plaintiffs; John Merril Nichols, Robert B. Liddell and Jessica M. Baker of Hiscock & Barclay and Paul L. Leclair of Leclair Korona Giordano Cole, David C. Scheper, Katherine Farkas and Diann H. Kim of Scheper Kim & Harris, Jonathan D. Cogan, Michael Joseph Garofola and Francisco J. Navarro of Kobre & Kim, Y. David Scharf of Morrison Cohen, James E. Eagan and Christopher E. Wilkins of Feldman Keiffer, Michael L. Smith of Manning & Marder, Kass, Ellrod, Ramirez, Alan J. Knauf and Amy L. Reichhart of Knauf Shaw, Carolyn G. Nussbaum of Nixon Peabody and Daniel E. Jackson and Daniel Percell of Keker & Van Nest, Brendan H. Little, Dennis C. Vacco, and Kevion James Cross of Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman for the defendants