I can't imagine that the judge's ruling would have required the CoS to pay for ALL of Mosey's legal costs and fees up to this point. But in denying the anti-SLAPP motion of the CoS (which is what this ruling is about), it sounds to me that the judge is saying that Mosey is due all the legal costs and fees she has incurred in connection with the CoS's anti-SLAPP motion.
Has anyone over at Tony O's who actually is a lawyer confirmed that this is the case?
I don't think Judge Waldrip has the authority to award ALL court costs/legal fees incurred thus far.
Here's what the applicable law* says:
Sec. 27.009. DAMAGES AND COSTS.
(a) If the court orders dismissal of a legal action under this chapter, the court shall award to the moving party:
(1) court costs, reasonable attorney's fees, and other expenses incurred in defending against the legal action as justice and equity may require; and
(2) sanctions against the party who brought the legal action as the court determines sufficient to deter the party who brought the legal action from bringing similar actions described in this chapter.
(b) If the court finds that a motion to dismiss filed under this chapter is frivolous or solely intended to delay, the court may award court costs and reasonable attorney's fees to the responding party.
TeamCSI was the "moving party". If they'd 'won' the Motion, then 27.009(a) [plus 27.009(a)(1) + 27.009(a)(2)] would have applied.
But TeamCSI didn't win.
It appears that 27.009(b) is the authority upon which court costs/attorney's fees can be awarded to the "responding party" (aka TeamRathbun).
Judge Waldrip's decision cites 27.009(b) in the final sentence.
Notice how 27.009(a) uses "shall award" and 27.009(b) uses "may award".
TeamRathbun faced a huge financial risk, folks.
And Judge Waldrip did not have to award costs/fees to TeamRathbun.
*Link to entire applicable law here: http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/CP/htm/CP.27.htm