Funded disputes, also known as Third Party Funding (TPF) or litigation funding, have evolved considerably over the last decade. TPF is now truly a feature of the commercial disputes landscape and, potentially, a key weapon in the armoury of claimants.
- Funded disputes occur when third party funder agrees to pay some or all of the legal costs associated with a claim.
- Typically, the funding will cover the funded party’s legal fees and expenses incurred in the claim.
- The funder may also agree to pay the other side’s costs if the funded party is so ordered, and provide security for the opponent’s costs.
- If the case is successful, the funder receives a share of the proceeds, based on a mutual agreement between the funder and the claimant.
Our involvement with TPF started when it was very much still in its infancy – we represented the first party to use it in a claim before the Competition Appeals Tribunal. The proceedings were an example of a true ‘David and Goliath’ case, where TPF was the lifeline that allowed our client to triumph.
We saw then what many have now realised – funded disputes allow the ‘Davids’ of the world take on the Goliaths, at least in the legal sense. Even when the case is strong, not everyone has the means to support legal proceedings. TPF allows for anyone, not just those who can afford it, to pursue legal action where it is warranted.
TPF has developed significantly since then. The benefits that it can provide now attract ‘Goliaths’ involved in litigation or arbitration as much as ‘Davids’. Third party funders offer considerably more options, like portfolio funding, pre-judgment monetisation of claims and ATE insurance for own-side costs. Equally, the range of disputes in which, and the parties for whom, TPF is available has grown exponentially.
Our early and continued involvement with funded disputes sets us apart from other law firms, and as TPF has developed, we have consistently been at the forefront. This couldn’t be clearer than with our new innovative portfolio-based litigation finance arrangement with Burford Capital, a leading global finance firm focused on law. The arrangement is the first of its kind to be offered by a top 100 UK law firm and major funder. The substantial, multi-million pound funded dispute portfolio financing arrangement provides flexible capital that will allow us to expand our ability to offer alternative fee arrangements (such as TPF) to clients. This agreement and our close relationship with the other members of the Association of Litigation Funders means that we are in an unrivalled position to address your funding needs.