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  • Carter Ledyard Secures Rare Award of Attorneys’ Fees in Connection with Frivolous First Amendment Claim Against Our Client, Suffolk County

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Carter Ledyard Secures Rare Award of Attorneys’ Fees in Connection with Frivolous First Amendment Claim Against Our Client, Suffolk County

Carter Ledyard successfully obtained an award of attorneys’ fees on behalf of our client, Suffolk County, in connection with a frivolous First Amendment claim brought against the County related to the Fire Island Inlet to Moriches Inlet (FIMI) Project, a beach stabilization project undertaken by the County of Suffolk, the State of New York, and the Army Corps of Engineers to repair and maintain sand dunes damaged by Superstorm Sandy along the 12.5 mile coastline of Fire Island. Carter Ledyard had previously obtained summary judgment in the County’s favor and the dismissal of a federal court action alleging that the County violated the Due Process, Equal Protection, and First Amendment rights of certain Cherry Grove property owners in connection with the FIMI Project (read more about that previous decision here).

In granting the motion for attorneys’ fees, the District Court recognized that “it is very rare that victorious defendants in civil rights cases will recover attorneys’ fees,” but agreed with Carter Ledyard that the First Amendment claim was “frivolous, unreasonable, and without foundation.” Suffolk County was represented by Carter Ledyard partner John Casolaro, counsel Lee Ohliger, and counsel Michael Bauscher.

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