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Motion for in Camera Inspection

Motion for in Camera Inspection

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Published by John Carroll
This is a copy of a Motion for In Camera inspection of attorneys billing records. I am not a lawyer so I researched and believe that an adverse party may not be entitled to review the opposing party's legal bills in ongoing litigation. Some people believe that to allow a review of billing records amounts to a breach of the attorney client privilege. I'm not sophisticated enough to use the bank's billing information to forecast Mr. Baker's case strategy, but nonetheless, I've asked the Judge to perform the review of those records on my behalf. I allege and believe that Coastal Community Bank obtained judgments for attorney's fees against local homeowners amounting to 5 times their actual amount which is, in my opinion, a violation of Florida Law. Attorney's fees provisions in Florida contracts are an indemnity provision, not a profit center. To take someone's home through foreclosure and then come into a windfall profit against them for attorney's fees, not due, is unconscionable.
This is a copy of a Motion for In Camera inspection of attorneys billing records. I am not a lawyer so I researched and believe that an adverse party may not be entitled to review the opposing party's legal bills in ongoing litigation. Some people believe that to allow a review of billing records amounts to a breach of the attorney client privilege. I'm not sophisticated enough to use the bank's billing information to forecast Mr. Baker's case strategy, but nonetheless, I've asked the Judge to perform the review of those records on my behalf. I allege and believe that Coastal Community Bank obtained judgments for attorney's fees against local homeowners amounting to 5 times their actual amount which is, in my opinion, a violation of Florida Law. Attorney's fees provisions in Florida contracts are an indemnity provision, not a profit center. To take someone's home through foreclosure and then come into a windfall profit against them for attorney's fees, not due, is unconscionable.

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Published by: John Carroll on Sep 11, 2010
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09/11/2010

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I THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE FIRST JUDICIAL CIRCUITI AD FOR WALTO COUTY, FLORIDACIVIL DIVISIOCOASTAL COMMUITY BAK,Plaintiff, Case o.: 09CA001577vs.JOH CARROLL, JODIE CARROLL,CHAMBERS STREET BUILDERS, IC.,TAUTO TRUSS, IC., and DEPARTMETOF THE TREASURY ITERAL REVEUESERVICE, et alDefendants. ____________________________________ JOH CARROLL,Counter-Plaintiff vs.COASTAL COMMUITY BAK andMIKE BYERSCounter-Defendants. ____________________________________________/COUTER-PLAITIFF JOH CARROLL’S REEWED MOTIO TOCOMPEL
 I 
 
CAMERA
ISPECTIO OF ATTOREY’S BILLIG RECORDS
Counter-Plaintiff, John Carroll (“
Carroll
”), pursuant to Florida Rule of CivilProcedure 1.380, respectfully moves for an Order directing Defendant CoastalCommunity Bank (“
Coastal
”) to deliver under seal to the Court no later than September 24, 2010, records pertaining to their legal bills, expenses and dates of payment in similar litigation to the litigation here for an
in camera
review by the Court. Grounds for thisMotion are presented below:
 
1. In this case Coastal’s pleadings seek $56,992.83 which it swears it hasincurred and is obligated to pay its attorney, Frank A. Baker, Esq. as recovery of liquidated damages of 10% of the purported outstanding principal balance on a promissory note.2. Coastal routinely complains that section 687.06, Florida Statutes (2008), plainly entitles them an attorney’s fee amounting to ten percent of the remainingmortgage principal. Coastal assumes that this trial court lacks discretion to reject thecontractual provision.3. Carroll argues that Coastal uses this contractual provision in a matter thatis against Florida Statute and Case Law by using it as a negotiation tactic and profitcenter for bank insiders.4. Coastal and Counter-Defendant Byers have assured Carroll that Frank A.Baker, Esq.’s fees are far less than the amount that they seek to collect in foreclosureactions, and that they only seek 10% of the principal amount because Florida Statute687.06 automatically awards the payment to the lender.5. Coastal has been awarded the enhanced attorney’s fees provision twice inWalton County Circuit Court in as many years. The first case, Coastal v. Shakespeare,was settled by Summary Judgement, with a very modest case docket, in which Coastalwas awarded $30,000.00 in Attorney’s fees. The second case, Coastal v. Money, wassettled by Default Final Judgement with a case docket absent any substantial filings, andCoastal was again awarded $30,000.00 in Attorney’s fees. It is elementary that a DefaultJudgement and a Summary Judgement are very different and would cause at least somevariation in actual attorney’s fees.
 
6. Curiously, Coastal was awarded a Default Judgement in Coastal v.Edwards during the same time period, with a similar principal amount claimed due andFrank A. Baker, Esq. only billed $7,400.00 in Attorney’s fees.7. On November 17, 2009 the 1
st
DCA struck down Baker and Coastal’stheory that they are automatically entitled to profit from a Defendant’s loss, stating,
“Under Florida law, a “contract to pay attorney’s fees is a contractfor indemnity.” Sarasota Publ’g Co. v. E.C. Palmer, 135 So. 521, 521(Fla. 1931). Such provisions are meant to indemnify a party, such asthe holder of a note and mortgage, for money spent to protect its interest.See Brett v. First at’l Bank of Marianna, 120 So. 554 (Fla. 1929). Sucha provision is not designed to allow the “mortgagee [to] recover from themortgagor for solicitor’s fees a sum in excess of the amount which theformer has paid . . . to his solicitor.”
 8. If this case is not settled by the parties, an
in camera
review of theserecords by the Court may be decisive in the Court’s resolution of this case and critical toCarroll’s Appellate review. See, e.g., Times Publishing Co. v. City of St. Petersburg, 558So. 2d 487 (Fla. 2d DCA 2002) (failure to make records inspected
in camera
by the trialcourt part of the record on appeal prevented review of the trial court’s findings that therecords were not relevant).9. Coastal has resisted and will undoubtedly object to Carroll’s discoveryrequest, as they have in the past, pursuant some theory of attorney client privilege andtherefore, “an
in camera
inspection of asserted exempt records is generally the only way

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