UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY
DEBTORS CASE NO. 07-52067
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
This matter is before the court on the Application for Attorney for Debtor for Additional Compensation (“the Application”) filed herein on September 23, 2008. The Chapter 13 Trustee filed a Limited Objection to Application for Compensation (“the Objection”) on November 5, 2008. The Application seeks $2,225.00 in additional fees incurred in regard to the Debtor’s post-confirmation challenge to several proofs of claim.
The Trustee disputes the reasonableness of the billed rate of $250.00 per hour. The Trustee further contends that the compensation requested for certain specific services, i.e., a total of 1.9 hours expended in the review of the subject claims, is unreasonable. The Trustee states that review of claims is a service which any debtor’s attorney should provide for the fee initially agreed upon. She maintains that it is therefore unreasonable to request additional compensation for such a service. The Trustee also objects to the time claimed for attendance at the hearing on the Debtor’s objections to the subject claims. Finally, the Trustee points out duplicate entries for June 30, 2008 and July 1, 2008, and a charge for attending a hearing that did not take place on September 4, 2008.
As concerns the claim for additional fees for review of proofs of claim, if counsel for the Debtor had conducted his review prior to confirmation, he would have billed for such review then and his initial fee application would have increased. Further, the court has previously ruled in In re Smoodin, Case No. 07-50176 (Bankr. E.D. Ky. December 8, 2008), that a billing rate of $250.00 per hour for experienced bankruptcy counsel who makes efficient use of his time is not unreasonable.
The court does agree with the Trustee that the time for attending the August 7, 2008 hearing should be significantly reduced, that there were duplicate entries for June 30, 2008 and July 1, 2008, and that, although a hearing on a motion for relief was originally scheduled for September 4, no hearing was conducted on that date because of the movant’s withdrawal of the motion on the previous day. It appears that the withdrawal was filed late in the business day the day before the hearing and it is possible that debtor’s counsel may not have known of the withdrawal and may have shown up for court on September 4, but there is no appropriate notation in the application so indicating. The court will reduce the time attributable to attending the August 7, 2008 hearing to .5 hour and disallow the amounts claimed for the July 1, 2008 duplicate entry and the September 4, 2008 entry, for a total reduction of $500.00 (2.0 hours x $250.00). The court therefore awards a fee of $1,725.00.
It is so ordered.
J.D. Kermode, Esq.
Beverly M. Burden, Esq., Trustee