While most of the Moore hospital’s creditors haven’t see a dime in payment, and many physicians have yet to receive previously promised bonuses, several of the lawfirms involved in the case have submitted bills totaling almost one-half of a million dollars, recently filed court documents show.

Two firms — one which represented the hospital during its bankruptcy and another which represented the facility’s unsecured creditor’s committee — have filed invoices which, together, total more than $466,000.

A third filing — made by two former members of the hospital’s board of directors — seeks reimbursement for more than $22,000 in legal fees.

Running hundreds of pages and containing a detailed, the firm’s invoices offer an inside look at the case’s twists and turns.

Filed March 9, the application for “compensation and reimbursement of expenses” by Dallas-based Kane Russell Coleman and Logan seeks a total of $363,851 — $319,103 in fees and $44,748 in expenses.

That fee, the filing states, is justified because the hospital’s bankruptcy presented “numerous novel and complex issues” which require the special skills and experience of the applicant’s members.

“In addition, this case proceeded at an accelerated pace due to the debtor’s extreme financial problems, complex capital structure and unique situation as a provider of acute care medical services,” the document says.

The second request, from the firm of Gardere Wynne Sewell — also based in Dallas — asks the court to approve a payment of $102,359: $99,639 in fees and $2,720 in expenses. That firm, court documents show, served as the chief counsel for the hospital’s official committee of unsecured creditors.

Ironically, both firms make their home at Dallas’ Thanksgiving Tower, 1601 Elm St., — with the Sewell firm occupying suite 3000 of the building, while the firm of Kane Russell Coleman makes its home in suite 3700.

The third filing, made by former hospital board members Larry Leemaster and William J. Waterman, seeks reimbursement of legal fees and expenses totaling $22,818. The men are represented by the firm of Andrews Davis, of Oklahoma City.

However at least one objection to Lewmaster Waterman payment has been filed.

Court records show the unsecured creditor’s committee objects to Leemaster and Waterman’s request because the creditor’s committee is “in the process of verifying the validity of (the) request” and whether such legal fees really provided a benefit to the estate.

“Until this verification is finalized, the committee objects to the allowance and payment of this amount as an administrative expense,” the committee’s objection states.

Funds for the payments — should they be approved by the court — would come from the $34.25 million sale of the hospital. In late February the facility was sold to the Norman Regional Medical System.

And while the hospital’s sale has been finalized, and staff members praise Norman Regional’s management of the facility, issues surrounding the bankruptcy and its former owner-managers, The Schuster Group, continue.

‘I think it’s kinda’ tacky that many of the doctors who are still owed money aren’t getting paid, but the attorneys are submitting huge bills,” said Dr. Kim Fletcher, and obstrican-gynecologist for the facility.

Fletcher, who’s practice was considered a key component of the hospital’s operation, said she is still owed more than $30,000 by The Schuster Group.

“It was supposed to be a bonus for my work,” she said. “But now, I’ll probably never see it. I though, ‘maybe’ I would see some of it, but I haven’t.”

Fletcher said it concerns her that many other physicians haven’t been paid their bonuses either. “It’s sad. These were part of the contact. It’s just wrong. I’m just happy that we’re in better hands now.”

The requests for legal fees is expected to be reviewed at a April 3 hearing in Oklahoma City federal bankruptcy court. That hearing, set before bankruptcy judge T.M. Weaver, is scheduled for 9:30 a.m.

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