Chrysler bankruptcy lawyers rack up $12.7M bill in first month

During bankruptcy, just about everyone involved with the affected company is going to feel the pain in some form. That is, of course, unless you're a lawyer. New York law firm Jonas Day has represented Chrysler during its time spent in Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and Automotive News is reporting that the firm billed $12.7 million for the month of May alone. That figure included 72 partners working on the case, in addition to another 193 lawyers chipping in. About $256,000 of that figure accounts for expenses, and the rest encompasses some hefty legal fees.

We're not all that surprised that it takes over 250 lawyers to execute a Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Chrysler's magnitude in only 40 days, but the figures for the firm's head lawyer, Corinne Ball, are staggering. Ball booked 15 hours a day, seven days per week for the entire month, at a bill rate of $900 per hour! That's $401,310 to you and I. On average, lawyers on the case billed $477 per hour, while paralegals came in at $224.

How much does it cost to feed 266 lawyers for a month? $5,878. That's about $20 per person for three meals, seven days a week. Taxi fees? $4,247. Document copying was a hefty $52,000 and hotel bills rang up at $62,000. Recession? What recession? Those numbers are pretty large, but in the end, results are worth big money. And getting a company the size of Chrysler out of bankruptcy in 40 days is no small task.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd | Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty]

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