MIAMI – Rivero Mestre successfully represented River Bridge Corporation and River Bridge Realty Corporation in an appeal before Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal relating to a multi-million dollar attorney’s fees award against the River Bridge entities.
Following a trial on several claims arising from a failed real estate transaction, including a claim for millions of dollars in speculative lost profits, a judgment was entered against River Bridge for the full amount claimed. A subsequent fee hearing granted a judgment on fees that reflected the results obtained by the prevailing party against the River Bridge entities. An appeal of the merits judgment concluded with a reversal of the lost profits portion of the award, resulting in a reduction of the amount of the judgment by approximately 85%. The River Bridge entities filed a motion for relief from the attorney’s fees judgment. That motion was summarily denied by the trial court.
Jorge A. Mestre and Ana C. Muñoz represented the River Bridge entities in their appeal to the Fourth DCA on the denial of the 1.540(b)(5) motion. In reversing the trial court’s order denying the motion and remanding the matter for further proceedings, the Fourth DCA found that the trial court had erred by not conducting a proper evidentiary hearing to determine whether attorney’s fees accrued in preparing issues on which the River Bridge entities ultimately prevailed could be parsed out from the fees from the much narrower issues not related to the reversed speculative lost profits. The opinion gives significant guidance indicating a view that in many similar cases, trial courts have been, or should have been, able to disentangle fees, once a proper examination of the trial record and fees evidence is undertaken.
About Rivero Mestre LLP
Rivero Mestre, from its offices in Miami and New York, represents clients from investigation to verdict and appeal in complex business disputes in U.S. federal courts, state courts, and domestic and international arbitration proceedings. The firm’s practice focuses primarily on representing corporate and institutional clients in a broad range of complex commercial disputes including financial institution matters, intellectual property disputes, and litigation and arbitration relating to Latin American trade and investment. For more information, visit www.riveromestre.com.