Hawaiian Air consultant drops request for $1.75M bonus
A judge also declines to delay a hearing on Joshua Gotbaum's $8 million success fee request
Airline consulting firm Simat, Helliesen & Eichner Inc. yesterday withdrew its request for a $1.75 million success fee for helping to bring Hawaiian Airlines out of bankruptcy.
The firm, which had assisted former Hawaiian Air trustee Joshua Gotbaum, said in a bankruptcy court filing it was relinquishing the right to seek the success fee as long as parties opposing the fee agree to let Hawaiian pay SH&E for previous work and expenses in the case.
The firm's motion comes amid a dispute between the airline and Gotbaum over the trustee's request for an $8 million success fee, which has drawn opposition from all sides in the case. The carrier's unions and creditors say that Gotbaum, who earned a salary of $50,000 a month as trustee, should not get any success fee.
A hearing on Gotbaum's request for a fee is set for 9:30 a.m. Thursday. Hawaiian had sought to delay the hearing by a week at the request of Judge Robert Faris, who said he needed more time to review documents that Gotbaum and the airline were planning to file.
Yesterday, however, Faris ruled that no more papers could be filed over the success fee dispute and that no testimony or other evidence could be presented at the hearing. Faris also ordered that the hearing proceed as scheduled.
"The parties have already filed hundreds of pages of memoranda, declarations and exhibits," Faris wrote. "Disputes over fee awards are not supposed to spawn a second major litigation."