Executive order limits pay to lawyers in BP lawsuits

MONTGOMERY, AL. (WSFA)– Governor Bob Riley signs executive order to limit the amount lawyers can receive from the state's lawsuit against BP and other companies for the Gulf oil disaster.

The executive order restates existing law and long standing policy regarding the payment of legal contracts.

Governor Riley says his executive order protects taxpayers from having to pay extreme fees to lawyers.

He says his top priority for the oil disaster is to compensate Alabamians for their losses, not to enrich lawyers.

"Earlier, the attorney general tried to hire a law firm whose lawyers would get 14 percent of whatever BP ultimately pays out, and his office confirmed to us they would receive that amount even if the lawyers did nothing...." Said Governor Riley.

The governor also adds, "This executive order does not bar the attorney general from doing anything or from pursuing this lawsuit, but it does protect the taxpayers from getting ripped off by lawyers who expect to make millions of dollars, even when they play no actual role in getting Alabamians the payments they deserve from BP."

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