As we previously reported here, the Rhode Island Supreme Court recently ruled that the public nuisance suit filed by the State’s Attorney General against various former lead paint manufacturers, resulting in a jury verdict against the manufacturers, should have been dismissed by the trial justice. In the wake of the Supreme Court’s refusal to impose liability on lead paint manufacturers under a public nuisance theory, the lead paint manufacturers are now seeking to recoup some of their costs from the state.

In an affidavit filed on July 24, 2008 (click here to read the affidavit), an attorney, who acted as liaison counsel for the defendants, listed the costs incurred in conjunction with the work of co-Examiners appointed by the court to evaluate remediation plans, for which the defendants are seeking reimbursement. The Court has not yet ruled on the request.

Notably, the Rhode Island Attorney General had entered into a contingent fee agreement with the firm of Motley Rice LLP, which agreed to provide legal representation on behalf of the State in exchange for a fee reflecting a percentage of any monies recovered. It is currently unclear whether the defendants will seek to recover costs from Motley Rice LLP if they cannot recover them from the State.