Monday, August 26, 2019

Proskauer seeks $16.4 million in fees from Puerto Rico

By on May 21, 2019

For 4 months’ legal work

SAN JUAN — The leading law firm in charge of handling Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy cases has billed the government $16.4 million for work performed between October and January.

The bills come a week after court fee examiners—in the bankruptcy-like process under the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act (Promesa)—raised the alarm about a petition filed in U.S. District Court by the island’s fiscal oversight board, seeking an extension to the 90-day term to serve more than 1,200 defendants sued in relation to certain commonwealth general obligation bonds that have been challenged and to recover money paid while the commonwealth was insolvent.

The petition is “duplicative” and its cost would be “significant,” reads a motion signed by Eyck O. Lugo Rivera, one of the lawyers for fee examiner Brady Williamson.

Proskauer Rose LLP billed $7.3 million for work performed for the fiscal board as representative of the commonwealth; $813,467 for work performed on behalf of the Employees Retirement System; and $956,646 for legal work performed on behalf of the Highways and Transportation Authority.

The law firm, which has employed more than 26 lawyers only for the debtors’ cases, also billed $2.7 million in fees for work performed on behalf of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority and $4.69 million for work on behalf of the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corp. (Cofina by its Spanish acronym).

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