Former lead paint makers went before Rhode Island's Supreme Court on Monday to prevent the state from honoring a contract potentially worth tens of millions of dollars. The attorney general's office hired two private firms to press the suit, filed in 1999, and agreed to pay the outside lawyers more than 16 percent of whatever the state got if it won the case. An industry lawyer told justices the contract was unconstitutional because it gave outside lawyers a financial interest in the case's outcome.
State's Contract With Outside Attorneys Unconstitutional, Say Lead Paint Industry Lawyers
The Associated Press
April 5, 2006