California Proposition 106, Attorney Fee Limits for Tort Claims (1988)

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California Proposition 106 was on the November 8, 1988 statewide ballot in California as an initiated state statute where it was defeated.
  • Yes: 4,288,346 (46.9%)
  • No: 4,855,839 (53.1%) Defeatedd

Proposition 106 was an unsuccessful attempt to deter what its supporters viewed as excessive litigation by reducing the fees that attorneys could receive for their work in tort injury cases.

It would have limited attorney contingency fees to 25% of the first $50,000 recovered, 15% of the next $50,000 recovered and 10% of the amount recovered above $100,000. Proposition 105 would have authorized courts to conduct hearings to determine whether a proposed fee was reasonable and fair. A judge could reduce the allowable fee below the limits proposed in Proposition 106, but not increase the fee above these limits.

Ballot summary

The official ballot summary said, "Measure places limit on amount of a contingency fee an attorney may collect for representing a plaintiff in connection with a tort claim. The fee may be no more than 25 percent of first $50,000 recovered, no more than 15 percent of next $50,000 recovered, and no more than 10 percent of amount recovered above $100,000. The court may review the fee and reduce it below the stated limits if it is not reasonable and fair. Defines amount recovered to calculate fee limitations."

Fiscal impact

The fiscal estimate provided by the California Legislative Analyst's Office said, "The fiscal impact of this measure on state and local governments is unknown, and would depend largely on how attorneys and their clients respond to these contingency fee limits. The response could affect the number of cases filed, the number settled before trial, and the size of the awards."

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