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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Attack on PACER Fees: “Is the Most Massive, Illegal Paywall in the World About to Come Down?&#

PACER’s fees are under attack in a lawsuit now at the summary judgment stage. The lawsuit is described in a very partisan article I stumbled across. It’s a January 23, 2018 article at Naked Capitalism. An excerpt is set out below:

“Over the past year many press trade groups have filed friend of the court Amicus briefs, all of them arguing the excessive fees were an impediment to full and accurate reporting. In September 2017, former Sen. Lieberman and Rep. Darrell Issa filed an amicus brief clarifying that as members of Congress at the time it was certainly Congressional intent that PACER fees be set no higher than necessary to run the system.

In December 2017, the plaintiffs filed their own Motion for Summary Judgement which highlighted that, as the case progressed, experts assessed PACER fees were at least 600 times higher than legally allowed. My $34.10 bill should be just under $.06. At that rate, I could have pulled the entire case to see if more filings better exposed Schneider.

Finally, on January 5, after being denied several extensions, the Department of Justice filed their reply to the Motion for Summary Judgment. The DOJ argues everybody has read the e-Government Statute wrong, including legislators who drafted it. Their pleading reads like a school exercise where students are forced to defend an obviously ridiculous proposition.”

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