A Canadian Wife recently challenged her divorce attorney’s invoice in Canadian court.
That’s a pretty extraordinary thing to do. And, not surprisingly, she wasn’t successful in it.
After a thorough review of the record, which took more than 10 days, the British Columbia Court of Appeal found the attorney’s invoice was reasonable under all of the circumstances of the case.
The divorce was between a wealthy couple who had accumulated an approximately $12 million fortune over approximately 42 years of marriage.
The couple were pretty litigious and chose to litigate just about any issue that could be litigated – both at trial and all the way through appeal.
Family businesses, real estate, art, jewelry, inheritance, airline points, etc., you name it, they litigated it.
This couple was in court for nearly a month of days, spread out over a three and a half month period.
The Wife was awarded well over half (64%, to be precise) of the family’s remaining fortune, approximately $6 million.
The Wife chose a commercial litigator as her lead counsel, rather than a divorce lawyer. As a result, a divorce lawyer had to be consulted as well.
All told, the case took about 2,500 lawyer-hours of effort on behalf of the Wife.
The total fees and costs billed to the Wife: over $1 million.