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OCT
12
3 YEARS

Winklevoss Twins to Pay $13 Million to Lawyers for Facebook Settlement

A NY appeals court declines to reopen consideration that the twins' lawyers committed malpractice in the settlement with Facebook and subsequent disclosure of how much money the twins got in the case.

Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, Mark Zuckerberg
Getty Images

The Winkleviii have come up short again. An appellate court in New York has refused to hear further arguments why Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss should not have to hand over $13 million to the law firm which helped them draft a settlement agreement with Facebook.

The twins famously claimed to have come up with the idea that became Mark Zuckerberg's inspiration for Facebook, which led to a lawsuit, which led to a $65 million settlement, which led to the Oscar-winning film, The Social Network.

The twins then became just as notorious for never letting go of the idea that they should have gotten more, attempting to rescind the settlement agreement by arguing that Facebook executives committed securities fraud by hiding information about the company's value during settlement negotiations.

Even after a Ninth Circuit judge told them that "at some point, litigation must come to an end," the twins unsuccessfully appealed to the Supreme Court and then pushed an entirely new lawsuit.

Meanwhile, separately, the twins went after the law firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, which represented them in the first case portrayed in The Social Network. The lawyers at the firm were accused of malpractice for their role in the affair, including by violating confidentiality by revealing the $65 million settlement figure in marketing literature.

An arbitration panel told the twins they had to pay the law firm a $13 million contingency fee nonetheless. 

The decision was appealed to a New York Supreme Court judge, who confirmed the fee.

Now, upon further appeal, New York's Appellate Division, First Department, has told the twins they've gotten sufficient due deliberation.

Still no court wins, but the Winklevii have at least translated their fame into being nut pitchmen

E-mail: eriqgardner@yahoo.com

Twitter: @eriqgardner