What the Courts Are Saying
In stating that "[i]t is difficult to overstate the complexity of [the litigation]." Judge Barbadoro noted the extraordinary effort required to pursue the litigation towards its successful conclusion, which also "put [Plaintiffs] at the cutting edge of a rapidly changing area of law."
The Honorable Paul Barbadoro – United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire granting final approval of the settlement in In re Tyco International, Ltd. Sec. Lit.
"Counsel actively, thoroughly and impressively litigated a complex subject matter (both factually and legally), all the while confronting formidable defense counsel. Obviously, the plaintiff class did not face a simple path if it continued with this litigation into further discovery, summary judgment motions and, eventually, trials and, potentially appeals. Counsel has obtained a not insubstantial settlement figure as the result of their hard, and capable, work. Moreover, they obviously performed all of this work on a contingency basis, which is by definition an exceedingly risky proposition."
Honorable George H. Wu, United States District Court for the Central District of California – in making tentative rulings on Plaintiff’s Motion for Final Approval of Class Action Settlement and Plan of Allocation of Settlement Proceeds; and Plaintiff's Counsel's Motion for an Award of Attorneys' Fees and Reimbursement of Expenses in Tripp, et al. v. IndyMac Bancorp, Inc., et al., Case No. 2L07-CV-1635-GW (VBK) (January 28, 2013)
"I know you know that I take this responsibility seriously and try to think hard about these issues. And I do want to compliment class counsel. I think that you behaved responsibly here and gave very good service to the class. They were well served by you."
The Honorable Denise Cote - United States District Court for the Southern District of New York addressing Kessler Topaz in the context of approving the settlement of In re The Interpublic Group of Companies Securities Litigation.
"….the Court finds that KTMC is one of the most experienced ERISA litigation firms in the country, with particular expertise in the area of ERISA breach of fiduciary class actions. Further, KTMC's litigation efforts have resulted in favorable court opinions in a number of ERISA decisions denying motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment. KTMC has also prevailed in appeals before the First, Third, Sixth, and Ninth Circuits resulting in seminal decisions that have helped shape this relatively new area of ERISA jurisprudence. Moreover, KTMC is one of only a very few firms in the country with trial experience in ERISA "company stock" fiduciary breach class actions. Finally, in addition to its extensive litigation experience, KTMC has also successfully engaged in extensive, intricate and successful settlement negotiations and mediations involving complex legal and factual issues involving ERISA claims, resulting in large recoveries for affected classes."
Vicki Miles-LaGrange, Chief United States District Judge, United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma – appointing interim lead class counsel in the Chesapeake Energy Corporation consolidated ERISA action (December 6, 2012)
"It was a hard-fought case, and I think that the legal work on this case has just been absolutely spectacular, and I want to brag on all of you for the work that you put into it. I know that, for every little bit of iceberg that I saw above the water, there was a whole big ice cube down below it that I didn't see. I know you all put all the work in on behalf of your respective clients that they deserved, and that you both did outstanding work on this case. And I also want to congratulate the parties, even though it was a hard-fought case, to come together in what I think was in the best interest of the parties to resolve this case rather than -- and not worried about my time, but just worried about the economics of going forward with it. I think that this settlement was a good settlement."
The Honorable Kimberly E. West, United States Magistrate Judge – United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma – in granting final approval of the settlement in CompSource Oklahoma, et al. v. BNY Mellon Bank, N.A., et al., Case No. 08-469-KEW (October 25, 2012)
"Now this goes back to the original approval of the securities fraud settlement because I found in my opinion approving the settlement that counsel for the class were to be commended because they cast their lot along with their clients. That is to say that counsel's fees were to be determined and paid in accordance with the way the class members were going to be paid; that this was, in my view, a creative and unique approach to the problem of paying fees to class counsel in a securities fraud case."
The Honorable Joel A. Pisano - United States District Court for the District of New Jersey approving the settlement in In re AremisSoft Corporation Securities Litigation.
". . . I am pleased to approve the settlement. I think it does the best that could be done under the circumstances on behalf of the class. . . . The litigation was complex in both liability and damages and required both professional skill and standing which class counsel demonstrated in abundance."
The Honorable Harry D. Leinenweber – United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in approving the settlement in Henry v. Sears, et al.