Washington–the fate of the so-called catalyst theory of attorney fees–an incentive for bringing citizen suits under federal environmental laws–hangs in the balance after arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court.

The justices heard arguments on Oct. 12 in Friends of the Earth v. Laidlaw Environmental Services, No. 98-822, which essentially raises two questions: Is a citizen suit for civil penalties under the Clean Water Act moot because the defendant came into compliance during the litigation? And if it is, can the citizen-plaintiffs be awarded attorney fees under the catalyst theory?

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]