The UCL Practitioner
Tuesday, July 13, 2004
"The Rise and Fall of the Trevor Law Group: Behind the Scandal that Threatens to Gut the Unfair Competition Law"
The cover story of this month's California Lawyer observes that "because of Trevor Law Group, California voters will be making a momentous decision this November on an initiative that will determine the fate of this controversial consumer law [i.e., the UCL]." And in case you didn't see it, last month's cover story was all about law blogging, and quotes the California attorneys behind Bag and Baggage and So Cal Law Blog.
In the story about the Trevor Law Group, I came across this passage:

"The standard amount for a settlement was $2,500, with the firm realizing anywhere from 70 to 90 percent of the take and CEWC receiving the rest."

In my limited research, I have often noticed that there is a relationship between a quasi-watchdog group and the lawyers representing them.

Are these groups non-profit or for profit enterprises? Is the divying up of the settlement money even legal?

I realize that for the scamster type law groups that they are intimately involved with the 'watchdog' organization, but how does it work when everything is on the up and up? Does the group negotiate with the lawyer or firm representing them?

The other area that really confuses me is the notion of just what exactly a company can be sued for. Surely, many of these 17200 cases have gone to trial and undoubtedly the company being sued has lost. What are they liable to pay for, just the attorney costs? Are they sometimes forced to pay punitive damages and if so, do all the punitive proceeds go to the law firm or to the organization that they lawyers are suing on behalf of or is it split?

Thanks for any help. I recently learned about this issue and heard about Prop 64 and am trying to educate myself so that I can make an informed decision regarding the matter come November.

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