Monday, December 28, 2009

Negative Multiplier

A parent and student prevailed, in part, in an action against a school district in which they claimed that the student had been denied FAPE. The District Court awarded the plaintiffs $104,349.45 in attorneys' fees. The School District appealed the award of attorneys' fees, asserting that the amount sought, $113,267.16, should be reduced by 75% because the plaintiffs had only prevailed on one of four claims. The Third Circuit rejected the School District's position, stating that while an attorneys' fee award can be reduced when the plaintiffs have only acheived partial success, there is no precise rule for making such a determination. In this case, the District Court had found that the plaintiffs had acheived substantial success in the litigation. The Third Circuit affirmed the fee award of the District Court.

The decision in Damien J. v. School District of Philidelphia can be found here.


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