Administrative Law

Daniel R.E. Jordan, Esquire

Special circumstances increase attorney fee award. Gasconade County Counseling Services, Inc. v. Missouri Department of Mental Health, No. 95457 (Mo. App. E.D., December 20, 2011), Romines, J.

Statute allows an award of litigation expenses including attorney fees, when State’s position in formal litigation was not substantially justified, but caps attorney fee at $75 per hour except in special circumstances. Circuit court found special circumstances based on evidence that showed an absence of qualified lawyers at $75 per hour and scarcity of qualified lawyers at rates between $125 and $350 per hour.

Held: Affirmed.
Record supported an award including attorney fees at $200 and $250 per hour.

Rule provides roadmap to appeal. Waller v. A.C. Cleaners Management, Inc. and Division of Employment Security, No. 96924 (Mo. App. E.D., March 20, 2012), Crane, P.J.

Rule constitutes a “virtual roadmap” for drafting a point relied on when appealing an agency decision.

Held: Dismissed.
Failure to comply with rule, after opportunity to correct, makes appellate review impossible.