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| 1 minute read

Litigation funding tie ups – the latest transatlantic legal trend

Earlier this year our Litigation Funding survey highlighted the growth of litigation funding in the UK. This trend has continued to accelerate and, as reported in the Financial Times, an increasing number of law firms are joining forces with litigation funders.

As with any growing trend this is dividing opinion. Those in favour recognise the advantages of outcome-based revenues and the increased access third-party funding brings to those who might otherwise choose not to litigate due to cost. Critics fear an impact on independence, conflicts of interest and, right now, a lack of clear regulation. The latter will inevitably come, whether prompted by the growing prominence of litigation funding backed cases or, as is often the case, when something goes wrong.

Either way, it seems litigation funding is likely to stick around. And, in a sector traditional criticised by a lack of innovation and commercial flexibility, it’s another example of law firms moving with times and embracing new ways of working.

My colleagues Gordon Stevenson and Iona McCall will be exploring this issue and many others related to litigation funding in a webinar with Peter Burrell (Partner, Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP), Susan Dunn (Founder, Harbour Litigation) and Lesley Hannah (Partner, Hausfeld) on 7th October between 15:00 - 15:45 BST.

You can register for the webinar here

Litigation funders back the cost of a dispute in return for their investment back and a multiple of costs or share of the winnings. For claimants it offers a way to reduce the spiralling costs of big-ticket litigation or finance an otherwise unaffordable dispute. The sector has expanded in the UK as investors have sought higher returns in an era of ultra-low interest rates. Britain’s litigation funders had £2bn in assets in April according to law firm RPC — double the amount three years previously.


litigation, litigation funding, disputes