Motion for Reasonable Attorney's Fees
"In an action at law, attorneys' fees will not be awarded unless clearly provided for by statute or contract." Honaker v. Farmer's Mutual Ins. Co., Del. Super., 313 A.2d 900, 904 (1973), citing Great American Indemnity Co. v. State, Del. Supr., 32 Del. Ch. 562, 88 A.2d 426 (1952); Maurer v. International Re- Insurance Corp., Del. Supr., 33 Del. Ch. 456, 95 A.2d 827 (1953).
In the instant case, X Medical Building Code of Regulations, executed January 9, 1981, provides, in relevant part, in Article VI section 3, "The delinquent unit owner shall be obligated to pay:
(a) all expenses of the council, including reasonable attorney's fees, incurred in the collection of the delinquent assessment by legal proceedings or otherwise."
Clearly, attorney fees are contemplated by this regulation. No guidelines, however, are set forth in the regulation except that a reasonable attorney's fees may be awarded "in the collection of the delinquent assessment . . ."
Under the Delaware Professional Conduct Rule 1.5(a) the factors to be considered in determining the "reasonableness" of a fee include the following:
(1) the time and labor required, the novelty and difficulty of the questions involved, and the skill requisite to perform the legal service properly;
(2) the likelihood, if apparent to the client, that the acceptance of the particular employment will preclude other employment by the lawyer;
(3) the fee customarily charged in the locality for similar legal services;
(4) the amount involved and the results obtained;
(5) the time limitations imposed by the client or by the circumstances;
(6) the nature and length of the professional relationship with the client;
(7) the experience, reputation, and ability of the lawyers performing the service;
(8) whether the fee is fixed or contingent.