Grant Stiefel was the testifying fee expert in support of a request for fees in Jones v. Wells Fargo, a successful class action brought under California’s Unruh Act. Mr. Stiefel's persuasive testimony regarding the reasonableness of the fee request and proposed lodestar multiplier led the trial court to award more than $25 million in attorneys' fees to class counsel
The district court for the Central District of California adopted and approved Grant Stiefel's methodology for evaluating block-billed, vague and redacted billing entries and slashed a prevailing First Amendment plaintiff’s $4.8 million fee award by more than sixty percent in CNS v. Planet. Mr. Stiefel's detailed reporting and expert analysis allowed the judge to identify vague, redacted and block-billed time entries, and the court applied Mr. Stiefel's recommended discounts of more than $1 million. The court also eliminated more than 1,300 hours that Mr. Stiefel identified as duplicative and non-compensable, reflecting an additional $1 million in reduced fees
In Vides v. ABM Janitorial Services, the prevailing plaintiff in a FEHA action moved for a fee award of over $1.5 million. Grant Stiefel’s expert fee analysis convinced the trial court that the requested hourly rates were unreasonable, that far too much time was spent on conferencing, and that the litigation was overstaffed. The court reduced the award by more than 65 percent to less than $500,000
In MMM Holdings v. Reich, a successful anti-SLAPP defendant moved for over $700,000 in mandatory attorneys’ fees. Although the defendant had prevailed at both the trial and appellate levels, Grant Stiefel's expert testimony showed that the fee request was block-billed, overly redacted, padded with excessive attorney conferencing and improperly staffed. The Orange County trial court agreed and cut the statutory fee award by more than 75 percent.