reduced to the extent that the percentage award will be calculated after
the deduction of expenses. The amount awarded pursuant to the Application
for Attorneys' Fees will also be reduced to reflect the determination
regarding the requested interetit, discussed below.
11. Reimbursement of Expenses
Plaintiffs' Counsel seek reimbursement of $190,794.63 for expenses
incurred in the prosecution of this matter, plus interest thereon.
Fleischman Decl., ¶ 52. Counsel for a class action is entitled to
reimbursement of expenses that were adequately documented and reasonably
and appropriately incurred in the prosecution of the class action. Abrams
v. Lightolier, Inc., 50 F.3d 1204, 1225 (3d Cir. 1995); Cullen, 197
F.R.D. at 151 (finding requested fees to be adequately documented, proper
and reasonable); Lazy Oil Co. v. Wotco Corp., 95 F. Supp.2d 290, 323
The expenses for which Plaintiffs' Counsel seek reimbursement include
(1) photocopying and reproduction, (2) postage, messenger services and
express mail services, (3) telephone and facsimile charges, (4) filing
and witness fees, (5) computer-assisted research, such as Lexis and
Westlaw, (6) fees of experts and consultants, and (7) dining, hotel and
transportation expenses incidental to out-oftown travel. Fleischman
Aff., Exhibit 2; Desmond Aff., Exhibit 2; Lifshitz Aff., Exhibit 2;
Tullman Aff., Exhibit B. Plaintiffs' Counsel are not seeking
reimbursement of several categories of costs, such as meals and car
service charges that were not incidental to out-of-town travel, that they
claim amount to thousands of dollars in expenses. Fleischman Decl.,
From the submissions, it appears the expenses requested by Plaintiffs'
Counsel were adequately documented, reasonable and appropriately incurred
in the litigation of this matter. Several courts have held that
photocopying expenses, telephone and facsimile charges, and postage,
messenger and express mail service charges are reasonably incurred in
connection with the prosecution of a large litigation. Abrams, 50 F.3d at
1225: Cullen, 197 F.R.D. at 151; In re Residential Doors Antitrust
Litig., No. 96-2125, 1998 WL 151804, at *2 (E.D.Pa. April 2, 1998).
Likewise, witness fees and the costs associated with expert witnesses and
consultants are often deemed incidental to litigation. Cullen, 197
F.R.D. at 151. Computer-assisted legal research has been found
incidental, if not essential, to successful prosecution of a litigation.
Id.; In re Residential Doors, 1998 WL 151804, at 11; Weikel v. Tower
Semiconductor Ltd., No. 96-3711, slip op. at 43 (D.N.J.30 November
It appears that none of the amounts claimed by Plaintiffs' Counsel for
any of these categories of expenses is excessive. Moreover, Plaintiffs'
Counsel has specifically excluded from its application requests for
certain expenses — meals and transportation not incidental to
travel — which previously have been deemed beyond the scope of
reasonableness. See Weikel, No. 96-3711, at 43. Accordingly, the request
for reimbursement of expenses is approved. The award of expenses,
however, will be reduced to reflect the determination regarding the
requested interest discussed below.
12. Interest on Attorneys' Fees and Expenses
Plaintiffs' Counsel also request an award of interest (the "Award of
Interest") on the fees and expenses awarded in this matter from the date
of the Fairness Hearing to the date of payment. Memorandum in Support of
Application for Attorneys' Fees at 20. Plaintiffs' Counsel
request that the interest be calculated at the same rate earned by the
Settlement Fund. Id. The Circuit has determined that a judgment awarding
attorneys' fees qualifies as a money judgment upon which post judgment
interest can be awarded. Eaves v. County of Cape May, 239 F.3d 527, 535
(3d Cir. 2001). The Circuit has held, however, that "post-judgment
interest on an attorneys' fee award runs from the date that the District
Court enters a judgment quantifying the amount of fees to the prevailing
party." Id.; see also Lanni v. New Jersey, 259 F.3d 146, 153 (3d Cir.
2001) (same). Accordingly, Plaintiffs' Counsel are entitled to
post-judgment interest on the fees and expenses awarded by this Opinion
and Order.*fn13 That interest will be calculated from the date of this
Opinion and Order, and not from the date of the Fairness Hearing.
Based on the foregoing, the Settlement is approved in its entirety. The
Application for Attorneys' Fees is approved, except the percentage award
will be calculated after the deduction from the Settlement Fund of the
amount awarded as reimbursement of expenses. The request for
reimbursement of expenses is also approved in the amount requested
— $190,794.63. The Award of Interest is approved, but interest will
begin to accrue from the date of this Opinion and Order. Interest will be
calculated at the same rate as is earned by the Settlement Fund.
Accordingly, Plaintiffs' Counsel are entitled to $1,436,401.79 in
attorneys fees ($4,500,- 000.00-$190,794.64 = $4,309,205.36. One third of
$4,309,205.36 is $1,436,401.79.). As mentioned, including $70,471.48 in
accrued interest, the Settlement Fund is valued at $4,570,471.48 as of 28
September 2001. The remaining corpus of the Settlement Fund available to
SCII shareholders, therefore, is $3,134,069.69.