Making Clean Water Act legal fees two-way

The Clean Water Act, like many federal statutes, currently contains a nominally neutral attorneys’-fee award provision which is commonly read to call for an award of attorneys’ fees to plaintiffs who prevail, but not to defendants who prevail. H.R. 1179, introduced by Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.) with 59 co-sponsors, would move to full two-way loser-pays by prescribing that fees ordinarily be paid. One possible impact would be to help clear infrastructure legal logjams [Charmaine Little, Legal Newsline, thanks for quote]

One Comment

  • This, hopefully, would be an opening wedge. Full two-way loser pays in government-involved lawsuits would eviscerate a major obstruction tactic of nuisance lawsuits.

    I can dream – but don’t see it happening – of this extending into the civil litigation arena.

    And taken to the logical extreme, if e.g., SCOTUS overturns the injunctions against the federal restriction on immigration recently declared by executive order, the people filing the suits, including several states, should be liable for legal fees.

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