Alan M, Granatowski vs. Theodore M. Smith, Esq.

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Disposition: Award to Petitioner

Issued by: Fee Arbitration Commission

Docket #: FAC-14-242

Dated: September 16, 2014

Bar Number: 009231

The undersigned constitutes a duly authorized Fee Arbitration Panel of the Fee Arbitration Commission of the Board of Overseers of the Bar. This Panel was designated to hear the controversy existing between the above named parties as set forth in the Petitioner's Petition. A hearing was held on August 27, 2014, in Bangor, Maine. The Petitioner and the Respondent participated telephonically. Based upon the evidence introduced, the Panel finds as follows:

  1. The Panel finds there was no written fee agreement that governed the representation involved in the Petition.

  2. The Panel further finds that the Respondent's offer to reduce his bill by 3.5 hours or $525.00 to compensate Petitioner for time spent at the court during prolonged settlement discussions is fair and is accepted by the Panel.

Measuring the findings with the factors set forth in Rules 1.5 of the Rules of Professional Conduct, the Panel finds that the Respondent has not carried his burden to show that the Respondent's fees and costs reasonable. Therefore, the Respondent's legal bill shall be reduced by the sum of 3.5 hours which equals $525.00.

In order to preserve the confidentiality of the written materials and the testimony submitted at the hearing, the findings of fact and conclusions are not set forth in the Award and Determination. This Award and Determination is accompanied, however, by a separate supplemental document which sets forth the findings of facts and conclusions of the Panel. 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 9(j), 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 9(j).

The Award and Determination is in full settlement of all claims submitted to the Arbitration Panel.

The undersigned have subscribed to this award on September 16, 2014.

Rebecca A. Cayford, Esq., Panel Chair
Brett D. Baber, Esq., Panel Member
Timothy Smith, CPA, Public Panel Member