Additional Comments by Hankin re Conservatorship of Levitt

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Note 1 -- Punishment for "tying up Judge Klausner's calendar" with APS elder abuse cases:   I requested from the Judge Klausner a fee of only about $10/hour above my then overhead of $215/hour, in order to prevent the Judge from characterizing my fee request as "greedy".  His punitive 15% reduction brought the fee award beneath the hourly cost of overhead for probate conservatorship litigation.  Judge Klausner had previously asked me several times to stop bringing APS elder abuse cases into his courtroom because they "tie up [his] calendar".   I continued filing them anyway, instead of letting people die in the gutter.  The fee awarded of $193.81 per hour, after several years of litigation, was over, was punitively low.  The hourly rate of $193.81 was $6.00 less per hour than the $200/hour rate that the Court pays Volunteer Panel lawyers immediately each month or so, while the work is being performed.   The deceased Conservatee, Peggy Page, no longer needed the funds, for her care.  There was no reason to aware me a fee beneath my overhead, since the Judge agreed (with the testimony of all the lawyers, parties and witnesses) that I had been very efficient with my time and successful in saving the Conservatee's life and estate.

Note 2 -- Hankin' s response to Judge Klausner's analysis of the case: Do you agree with Judge Klausner that it "doesn't do much good" to save a man from death due to elder abuse, if more than 1/3 of his money is used to pay for the lawyer's services?  Would your answer be any different if the elder would have no money at all, but for the lawyer's work?  Will lawyers take elder abuse cases involving less-than-affluent victims, knowing that the Judge can deter the lawyer from tying up his calendar with modest-estate cases by paying the lawyer less per hour than the costs the lawyer must pay as overhead? . . .  or less than the $200/hour the court pays Volunteer Panel lawyers (every month or two as the case moves along) ?]

Note 3 -- Punishing fees awarded:  The fees awarded ($190/hour, 3-5 years after the work was rendered) were $10/hour less than the rate paid by the court to volunteer panel lawyers and well beneath customary hourly overhead for probate-litigation lawyers.  Judge Gary Klausner asked me to stop bringing the APS elder abuse cases into his probate court because those cases "tie up my calendar."  I continued bringing the APS elder abuse anyway.  The low fee award (beneath overhead, and less than the rate awarded volunteer panel lawyers) was his way of telling me that there was a price to be paid for displeasing the judge.]