Justice Expenditures for Private Counsel and Judicial Fee Awards in Antitrust and Securities Cases

GGD-84-2: Published: Oct 7, 1983. Publicly Released: Oct 24, 1983.

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GAO examined Department of Justice expenditures during fiscal years (FY's) 1974 through 1982 for private counsel to represent Federal employees sued for actions performed within the scope of their employment. GAO also discussed Federal and private sector expenditures for court-awarded litigative costs and attorney fees in antitrust and securities litigation.

GAO found that Justice expenditures for private counsel during FY's 1974 through 1982 totaled about $4 million and Federal expenditures for court-awarded litigative costs in civil antitrust cases totaled about $279,000 during FY's 1978 through 1982. GAO also found that Federal statutes do not permit litigative costs to be awarded in securities litigation involving the Securities and Exchange Commission, and there were no fee awards against the Government in civil antitrust or securities litigation as of August, 1983, although such awards were authorized by law in 1981. GAO found that the amounts awarded for attorney fees in civil antitrust cases not involving the Government during statistical year 1982 ranged from $9,375 to about $4 million while amounts of such awards in securities cases not involving the Government ranged from $413 to about $3.4 million during the same period.

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