- You owe us nothing for expenses or fees if we are not successful in this litigation.
- Our contingency fee arrangement includes a 40% fee in the event of a settlement.
- We will repay our expenses out of our 40% fee. You are guaranteed 60% of the total recovery.
- Syngenta’s website makes it clear that it will not file counterclaims against farmers suing Syngenta.
We Cover All Expenses
We will cover all expenses in this litigation. Those expenses are considerable. We filed more than 2,500 individual lawsuits in Minnesota state courts at a cost of $400 apiece before we began “batch filing” them in groups of 80 or 90 plaintiffs per case. Our firm paid those filing fees.
Additional expenses will include:
- The cost of reviewing millions of Syngenta internal documents;
- The cost of taking the depositions of many Syngenta employees and executives;
- The cost of hiring expert witnesses to prove our case against Syngenta.
In the event that we are unsuccessful in this litigation, you will not receive a bill from us asking for payment for our lost time or money. We believe we will be successful, but if we aren’t, you owe us nothing.
Our Fee Agreement
In we are successful, our deal with you is simple. Only you can approve a settlement of your lawsuit against Syngenta. If you agree to settle, for every ten dollars we recover, you will be guaranteed six dollars, and we will take four dollars to repay our expenses. Whatever remains from that four dollars will be divided between the attorneys working on your case in the percentages set forth in the contract that you signed.
In sum, it’s a 60-40 deal—you keep 60%; we use the remaining 40% to repay expenses and to pay ourselves for the successful resolution of your case.
Expenses Repaid From Our 40% Share
We want to reiterate that all expenses will be repaid out of our 40% share. This is unusual, but we feel it is important to guarantee our clients 60% of any recovery.
We settled the genetically modified rice litigation with Bayer Crop Sciences for $750 million dollars. Together with our partner firms, we spent over $4 million to reach that result. In this case, we anticipate spending more than $10 million because the number of corn farmers in this case far exceeds the number of rice farmers in that case. Because the number of affected corn farmers is so high, we feel comfortable that our total expenses will be very low per farmer. Thus, we are absorbing those expenses from our 40% share.
Syngenta Won’t File Counterclaims
There have been rumors that Sygenta is considering counterclaims against corn farmers in this litigation. This will not happen.
First, many states provide absolute protection from a suit by Syngenta because filing suit in the first place is exercising a constitutional right under the Seventh Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Second, Syngenta announced on its website on March 24, 2015 that it will not file countersuits against parties that sue Syngenta. This is just and right, and Syngenta is to be commended for this statement.
In sum, there is no financial risk to you in this GMO corn litigation against Syngenta. You have an absolute right to pursue recovery of your damages from Syngenta for its conduct that cost U.S. corn farmers billions of dollars.
* This information is provided to supply relevant information concerning the GMO corn lawsuit, and should not be received as legal advice. Legal advice is only given to persons or entities with whom Watts Guerra LLP has established an attorney-client relationship. If you have another lawyer in the GMO Corn lawsuit, you should consult with your own attorney, and rely upon his or her advice, rather than the information contained herein.