Over the last few years, third‑party funding has become a hot topic in Asia. As we previously reported, in 2017, the two leading arbitral seats in Asia, Singapore and Hong Kong, enacted legislation that opened the door to third‑party funding of arbitration proceedings. As well as fundamentally changing the legal framework in those jurisdictions, these developments made third‑party funding a major talking point across Asia. In this article, we reflect on the current landscape for third‑party funding in the region.Read More
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The advancement of women lawyers has been a discussion in the legal profession for decades, and one that I’ve followed closely. As a young associate, I was encouraged by the efforts underway at various firms to attract and promote women into senior positions. While women were admittedly underrepresented in leadership roles at law firms, the tide seemed about to shift.Read More
Perhaps the biggest trend in corporate law departments over the past few years has been the rise of the legal ops function. Ten years ago there were only a handful of law department operations professionals (LDOs), typically only in large sophisticated organizations. Today, about a third of the Fortune 500 law departments have at least one professional in such a role. All these professionals have one thing in common: their job is to bring business discipline to the legal function.Read More
No, I’m not talking about politics. I’m talking about a different partisan divide: the division in the legal-services market between so-called “Plaintiffs’ Firms” and “Defense Firms” and how litigation finance can mitigate the division.Read More
The latest work product decision in the litigation finance sphere — Acceleration Bay v. Activision Blizzard — bucks the near universal trend of courts finding that the work product doctrine shields disclosure of communications exchanged with an actual or prospective litigation funder. Probably because it used the wrong legal standard.Read More
The U.S. Court’s Advisory Committee on Civil Rules signaled in its recently released report that litigation finance continues “growing and evolving” and that considering potential rules mandating disclosure of funding arrangements must begin “if at all, by undertaking a careful quest for information that may be hard to come by.” That process will not proceed…Read More
If you have been looking for a niche that will help you attract new business from inside and outside your firm, one of the most promising areas is litigation funding. A wide range of lawyers in your firm need to be able to navigate litigation funding: transactional lawyers need to advise clients on the finance aspects of major litigation; litigators must advise clients who are considering potential claims of the various financing options available to them; and law firm leaders routinely evaluate the security and profitability of the firm’s fee arrangements with clients. Expertise in litigation funding has become a core competence. Being an expert in litigation funding used to be a competitive advantage. http://www.newellis.com/PDFs/2017/NewEllis-030617.pdf. But with the increased availability and acceptance of litigation funding, lawyers’ having experience with litigation funding– and funders—is a necessity and any firm lacking in this area will be at a distinct disadvantage.Read More
The closely watched case of Gbarabe v. Chevron – a class action against the oil giant based on an oil rig explosion off the coast of Nigeria – has been portrayed as a cautionary tale for the world of litigation finance. The defense attorneys’ dogged pursuit of the details of plaintiff’s outside funding, the story goes, succeeded, and aided in the attack on the adequacy of plaintiff’s counsel. The defense did successfully defeat class certification, but litigation funding ultimately played little or no role in the case’s demise.Read More
The Draft Report of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration and the Queen Mary University of London Task Force on Third-Party Funding in International Arbitration: What You Need to Know
The international arbitration community has been a leader in the adoption and evolution of third-party funding. Continuing that trend, The International Council for Commercial Arbitration (“ICCA”) partnered with Queen Mary University of London (“QMUL”) in 2013 to establish a task force comprised of over 50 leading international arbitration experts (the “Task Force”) to “identify and study the issues that arise in relation to third-party funding in international arbitration, and to determine what outputs, if any, would be appropriate to address them.”Read More
Claimants considering litigation financing often ask whether financing must be disclosed to U.S. courts. The answer in federal courts – for now – is no (save one limited exception).
Rule 26 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure currently requires initial disclosure of a broad range of information including the documents and other materials the party expects to use to support its claims or defenses, the computation of categories of damages, the identification of those who might have discoverable information, and insurance agreements. But the rule doesn’t require all potential disclosures, including for example, litigation financing arrangements.Read More