Leslie G. McCrillis v. Rita M. Farry, Esq.

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Disposition: Award to Respondent

Issued by: Fee Arbitration Commission

Docket #: FAC# 21-153

Dated: October 20, 2021

Bar Number: 002794


On October 12, 2021, the Board of Overseers’ Fee Arbitration Commission conducted a hearing in the above-captioned matter. The dispute concerned fee issues detailed within Petitioner, Leslie G. McCrillis’s fee Petition. The members of the Commission were Carrie Folsom, Esq. as Chair; Kristina M. Donovan, Esq.; and public member Cheryl Brandt. The hearing occurred via Zoom. The Petitioner was present and testified. The Respondent, represented by James M. Bowie, Esq., was also present and examined Respondent. Based upon the evidence admitted, the Commission finds as follows:

Respondent was hired to represent Petitioner, and there was a written fee agreement between them, therefore the sole issue before the Commission was the reasonableness of the fees charged. Petitioner made remarks that she had paid Respondent significant sums, but her supporting evidence revealed only the amounts that Respondent claimed had been paid, $4,670.18. Respondent changed firms during the course of her representation of Petitioner, and the Commission finds that said amount is the full amount paid for the entire representation while at both firms. Respondent stated that some of her fees have been waived and that she was seeking no further payments from Petitioner. Petitioner stated that she did not have a particular amount in mind, but that she felt the fees were excessive for the result she received.

Assessing the findings in conjunction with the factors set forth in Rule 1.5 of the Rules of Professional Conduct, the Panel finds that the $4,670.18 is a reasonable fee for the services rendered, and that Respondent does not owe any refund to Petitioner, and that Petitioner does not owe any further payments to Respondent. Pursuant to Maine Bar Rule 7(h), in order to preserve the confidentiality of the written materials and the testimony admitted at the hearing, the Commission has not enumerated its findings of fact and conclusions within this Award and Determination. The Award and Determination is accompanied, however, by a separate supplemental document which sets forth the findings of facts and conclusions of the Commission. By ruling of the Chair, the attached supplemental document shall not be considered part of the award, which is a public document. In accordance with Maine Bar Rule 7(h), the supplemental document shall be confidential and shall not be open to the public or disclosed to any person except as otherwise set forth in Maine Bar Rule 7(h).

This Award and Determination is in full settlement of all claims submitted to the Fee Arbitration Commission.

The undersigned have subscribed to this award on October 20, 2021.

Carrie Folsom, Esq., Panel Chair
Kristina M. Donovan, Esq., Panel Member
Cheryl Brandt, Public Member
Fee Arbitration Commission, Panel 2