The Work

October 16, 2009 12:35 PM

Fees and More Fees: Lehman, Chrysler Updates

Posted by Zach Lowe

The newest fee information in Lehman Brothers is in, and the tab is soaring toward $200 million, according to SEC records. (Hat tip: Bloomberg.)

The ten law firms (plus an individual lawyer in the U.K.) involved in Lehman's Chapter 11 case have billed Lehman's estate a total of $178,838,000 since the company filed for bankruptcy on Sep. 15 of last year. 

The biggest biller is Lehman's lead bankruptcy counsel at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, which has billed the estate nearly $99 million. But that figure is likely a placeholder, since Weil had already submitted fee applications covering that amount in August and those applications covered only work done through May 31, as we previously reported

The other big billers: Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCoy, counsel to the creditors committee, has billed $29 million so far. Jenner & Block, which is leading an examination of Lehman's collapse, has billed $17 million. And Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle, Lehman's special conflicts counsel, has billed $10 million. 

Jones Day, which is serving as special counsel, has billed $7.7 million so far, but that is likely to increase quickly if this week's court records are any indication. Jones Day is representing Lehman in a special subset of litigation related to last year's sale of Lehman's brokerage assets and some real estate to Barclays for $1.5 billion. 

As we've reported before, Lehman wants Judge James Peck to change the terms of the sale after accusing Barclays of netting an unfair $8.2 billion windfall because of last-minute changes to the deal allegedly engineered by high-level executives on both sides. On Thursday, Jones Day filed hundreds of pages of paperwork for a status hearing on the matter. 

Boies, Schiller & Flexner is advising Barclays, and Hamish Hume, a Boies lawyer working on the case, told Judge Peck on Thursday that Lehman still owes Barclays $3 billion in assets that were supposed to be part of the deal. (Among Lehman's claims is that the Barclays deal ended up including assets that were not supposed to be included, according to Reuters).

Jonathan Schiller, the managing partner of Boies Schiller and the lead partner on the matter, did not immediately return a message seeking comment. 

In other Jones Day-related news, the Detroit Free Press is reporting that the Treasury Department is moving to foreclose on an escrow account that Chrysler's estate is using to pay Jones Day, the car giant's lead bankruptcy counsel. Jones Day has billed Chrysler $25 million so far, the Freep says. 

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