When you’re among the world’s most sued companies, we imagine that you get used to some pretty hefty legal fees from keeping lawyers on retainer.
Even Apple has kicked up a fuss, however, when its court-appointed “monitor” — given the job of ensuring Apple’s antitrust compliance concerning e-book price fixing — handed in what the company considered a fairly outrageous time sheet.
How much is Apple having to pay out to Michael Bromwich, a former assistant U.S. attorney and Justice Department inspector General? Well, according to the company he has proposed an hourly rate of $1,100 — along with a hefty “administrative fee”.
Bromwich’s invoice for his first two weeks of work was $138,432: the equivalent of 75 percent of a federal judge’s annual salary. In a filing designed to protest the appointment Apple described this as “unprecedented in Apple’s experience.”
And in an ironic touch, the company has also observed that the man court-ordered to stop Apple from blocking market competition has been able to drive up his fee for exactly that reason.
“Mr. Bromwich appears to be simply taking advantage of the fact that there is no competition here or, in his view, any ability on the part of Apple, the subject of his authority, to push back on his demands,” lawyers for the company said in the filing.