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Judge sets antitrust fee schedule

Declan McCullagh Former Senior Writer
Declan McCullagh is the chief political correspondent for CNET. You can e-mail him or follow him on Twitter as declanm. Declan previously was a reporter for Time and the Washington bureau chief for Wired and wrote the Taking Liberties section and Other People's Money column for CBS News' Web site.
Declan McCullagh

WASHINGTON--A legal tussle over a schedule for paying attorneys' fees owed to two states in the antitrust case has ended in Microsoft's favor. The company is still liable to Massachusetts and West Virginia, but U.S. District Judge Coilleen Kollar-Kotelly agreed with Microsoft that a decision should happen sooner than later.

In a four-page ruling on Wednesday, Kollar-Kotelly denied the states' attempt to delay their request for about $2.3 million in attorneys' fees until their appeal of the antitrust settlement--which they claim was too weak--is complete. The judge said: "The court finds that it is generally prudent to proceed with the attorneys' fees phase of a case when the issues are fresh in the minds of the litigants and the court."