LevelEsq Journal

Raise The Bar™  

Recent Entries

August 4, 2022

How can women-owned certification benefit your law firm?

Although lucrative equity partnerships and leadership roles in Big Law remain elusive for female attorneys, certification can present major benefits to law firms, such as an increase of referrals and higher appeal from clients seeking diversity in outside counsel.

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August 4, 2022

Charitable litigation funding deployed against big hospital chains

Major financing from Arnold Ventures backs Fairmark Partners LLP, a law firm representing various plaintiffs who allege that large hospital systems have leveraged their market power to suppress competition and illegally raise prices.

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August 4, 2022

Will secondary litigation finance deals catch on?

A secondary deal in litigation finance occurs when a primary investor sells its interest in an investment to a separate investor. Why has Gerchen Capital raised $750 million for the first litigation fund aimed at secondary transactions?

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Lawsuit Cost Financing
July 8, 2022

Case Cost Financing vs. Litigation Financing

A lawyer may have an incredible case with huge damages, but without the financing or budget planning, what seemed like the case of a lifetime could be a true burden and lead to mistakes or even malpractice.

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June 3, 2022

Big Law liked litigation funding in 2021

Litigation funding use among firms in the Am Law 200 rose by 46% in 2021 as compared to 2020. Big firms partook in forty-one percent of four hundred twenty-six litigation funder deals begun that year and fifty-three percent of the deals involving portfolios of multiple cases—a remarkable four hundred eighty-eight percent increase from 2020.

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June 3, 2022

Pandemic-caused court backlogs continue to affect the U.S. legal system

Since 2020, the justice system has struggled to keep the wheels turning. Judges and lawyers acclimated to virtual courtrooms, continuing with non-jury hearings and arguments even when in-person proceedings shut down for weeks or months at a time, but these conditions seriously slowed jury trials.

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June 3, 2022

Consumer Legal Funding Act reaches Illinois governor’s desk

The Consumer Legal Funding Act, which would govern third party consumer litigation lending in Illinois, moved quickly through the majority democratic state legislature—much to the chagrin of insurers and business interests—has reached governor J.B. Pritzker’s desk for signing into law.

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June 1, 2022

The Lanier Trial Academy Master Class 6

The upcoming Lanier Trial Academy Master Class 6.0 is set to run from the 20th-23rd of June in the Marriott Marquis Hotel In Huston TX and offers a wealth of knowledge and information for legal minds. With nearly 35 years in business and 60 attorneys, The Lanier Law Firm has experience representing clients all over the country. 

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June 1, 2022

The Florida Justice Association Annual Conference

With decades of legal experience behind them, the Florida Justice Association is sharing some of their knowledge at their annual conference, June 15-18. This event will be held at The Breakers Palm Beach hotel. It consists of 4 seminars covering topics like advanced trial skills and max settlements. 

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May 26, 2022

What are the risks and rewards of financing lawsuit expenses?

You face a critical choice: A) Refer the case to a firm with better resources or B) rise to the challenge—committing to extensive discovery, armies of high-priced experts, high-tech exhibits, and, possibly, a lengthy appeal.

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May 20, 2022

How is case cost financing different from pre-settlement funding?

Pre-settlement funding (PSF) products offer claimants up-front cash during a pending lawsuit in exchange for an ownership interest in all or a portion of the eventual award or settlement on a non-recourse basis. So, what, exactly, does that mean?

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May 13, 2022

District of Delaware Chief Judge requires disclosure of third-party litigation funding

In April 2022, Chief District Judge Colm F. Connolly of the United States District Court for the District of Delaware issued a standing order requiring litigants appearing before him to disclose whether any part of their attorneys’ fees and expenses are being paid by a third party in exchange for a share of the litigation proceeds or “a non-monetary result.”

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May 13, 2022

What changes could improve the litigation funding industry?

In recent years, litigation funders have worked hard to cast themselves less as profiteers benefitting from strife and more as socially responsible investors facilitating access to justice—even while often enjoying high, non-correlated returns.

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May 13, 2022

Should lawyers be able to practice law in any state?

The Association of Professional ResponsibilityLawyers (APRL), comprised of 400+ lawyers and law professors who advise on legal ethics matters, has proposed that the American Bar Association (ABA) amend its model rules to allow lawyers licensed in any U.S. jurisdiction to “practice law and represent willing clients” regardless of geographic location, forum where the services will be provided, or which jurisdiction’s rules will apply.

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May 6, 2022

Embracing the Personal Injury Law Tech-Revolution

Though the process of virtually communicating with clients and managing cases accelerated during COVID-related lockdowns, personal injury attorneys have been embracing cutting-edge technology for years to help secure justice for injured clients.

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May 2, 2022

Planet Upside: Lessons on “Turning Obstacles into Success” for Trial Attorneys

Though the sentiment no doubt resonates with plaintiff attorneys, don’t go running off to book a seat on the next Space X flight just yet: There are mindset shifts and actions you can undertake right here, right now on Planet Earth (Planet Law?) to shift the odds in your favor.

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April 22, 2022

LevelEsq: Your ideal ally in truck accidents litigation

The commercial trucks transporting more than 70% of items shipped in the U.S. need more than the length of a football field to stop at highway speeds—and their drivers are ten times more likely to be killed on the job than the average American worker.

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April 11, 2022

How tort reform hamstring fair compensation for catastrophic injuries

Since the 1970s, big business and insurance interests have lobbied for “reforms” designed to reduce tort litigation and damages. Proponents argue the civil justice system is biased in favor of high plaintiff awards, which drive up liability insurance premiums and cause economic harm through social inflation.

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March 30, 2022

Justice Tech companies create a trade organization

Proposals to allow non-lawyer workers and investors into legal markets are often met with loud objections from attorneys concerned that changes would tarnish the legal profession, harm consumers, and affect their own bottom lines.

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March 30, 2022

How close is California to “Closing the Justice Gap?”

California, like many other states, is grappling with how to enhance consumer access to needed legal services. In early 2020, the state bar established a working group to explore a prior task force’s recommendations on managing legal services delivery involving technology, including artificial intelligence and the internet. A key concern is deciding how to integrate and regulate non-traditional providers in the legal services market.

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March 30, 2022

Patent Litigation Funding: Friend or Foe?

From the research, development and manufacture of pharmaceuticals to biotechnology-based food to medicines and medical devices, Intellectual property (IP) litigation is growing in the technology sector and the life sciences industry.

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March 21, 2022

The LevelEsq YouTube channel is live!

Seeing is believing…and when you visit the revamped and restocked LevelEsq YouTube channel you’re going to get an eyeful of more than a dozen brand new videos worth of great, diverse content!

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March 21, 2022

COVID-related cases: Liability beyond the physical premises

In at least 30 states, business interests have influenced legislation discouraging COVID-19 lawsuits, often by increasing proof burdens for plaintiffs, according to Reuters. Insurance companies have also enjoyed broad success on motions to dismiss COVID-related damage claims. Some recent state court findings, however, offer plaintiffs hope of recovery in certain situations.

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March 11, 2022

Amazon auto accidents: Why plaintiffs should be primed to face a dodgy defendant

If you specialize in car accident litigation and have not seen a case involving Amazon deliveries, you likely will soon. A 2019 investigation linked sixty accidents involving Amazon delivery contractors to serious injuries—including 10 deaths—since June 2015.

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March 3, 2022

Can litigation funding play a role in bankruptcy cases?

Corporate bankruptcies in the U.S. reached a 10-year high in 2020, then decreased to historic lows in 2021. To an extent, the steep hike in 2020 justifies the tame 2021 numbers, as many distressed companies folded quickly under pandemic economic pressures. Trillions of dollars in stimulus funds, debt forbearance, and continued low interest rates likely staved off many bankruptcies last year.

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March 3, 2022

Who will benefit from Australia’s litigation funding reforms?

In 2020, Australia began requiring litigation funders to register and submit to regulatory oversight as “managed investment schemes” for class actions. In October 2021, the government introduced a bill proposing further reforms purporting to improve transparency and protection for class action group members. Many worry the bill is ill-suited to its intended result.

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March 3, 2022

Is litigation funding an option for local governments?

Public sector affirmative litigation appears to be growing, encouraged by organizations like the Public Rights Project. Cities, including New York and San Francisco, have affirmative litigation departments.

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February 24, 2022

How to prepare your firm for the coming supply chain commercial litigation boom

The many disruptions to the flow of goods due to the pandemic-related lockdowns may well increase litigation as companies try to deflect resulting costs onto others and may prove to be a boon to your law practice.

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February 10, 2022

Are large entities pursuing non-lawyer law firm ownership in Arizona?

As part of an initiative to increase low- and middle-income consumers’ access to legal services, Arizona in January 2021 became the first U.S. state to allow non-lawyer law firm ownership.

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February 10, 2022

What is happening in Utah’s Sandbox?

To increase consumer access to justice in the state, the Utah Supreme court in August 2020 established a Legal Services Innovation Office (IO) and a seven-year experimental program, called the Sandbox, to allow lawyers and non-lawyers to provide legal services under the state supreme court’s supervision.

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February 10, 2022

How has litigation funding changed during the pandemic?

At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, many feared a drastic disruption of the legal industry, as emptying offices spurred fears of layoffs, pay cuts, and insolvency. The legal market, however, experienced a boom in 2021.

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February 3, 2022

Wrongful death: Your client v. Live Nation?

Entertainment giant Live Nation’s name is virtually synonymous with large live events and concerts. It is also increasingly showing up as a defendant in wrongful death lawsuits. These cases can lead to large recoveries for plaintiffs but often after substantial challenges, not the least of which is taking on a giant conglomerate dollar for dollar.

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February 2, 2022

The 47 second blueprint for a case cost insurance & litigation financing (r)evolution

Want a concise-yet-powerful overview of innovative, affordable case cost insurance and litigation financing solutions that have empowered plaintiff attorneys across the country to boost firm profitability even as they focus more fully than ever on pursuing justice for clients?

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January 18, 2022

Promises kept: A real world LevelEsq coverage success story

As a specialist in medical malpractice and complex personal injury cases, Paul da Costa admits he’s grown a bit skeptical of insurance companies, generally. Perhaps you share in this skepticism -- as a company founded by plaintiff attorneys, LevelEsq is more than sympathetic to such sentiments.

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January 15, 2022

Global Reinsurer pins U.S. social inflation on third-party litigation funding

In a December 2021 report, reinsurance company Swiss Re designated third-party litigation finance (TPLF) as a major contributor to U.S. social inflation. The report defines TPLF as investors financing consumer or commercial litigation either through non-recourse loans (no repayment without a recovery) or by accepting legal assets as collateral.

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January 14, 2022

Non-lawyer law firm ownership scuttled in Florida

In November the Florida Bar’s Board of Governors unanimously rejected proposals to let non-attorneys own law firms and share in legal fees.

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January 14, 2022

New York expands mandatory disclosures of defendants’ insurance information in state court

In a twist on the trend toward mandatory disclosure of money involved in litigation, New York is now requiring defendants to give plaintiffs with personal injury claims broad information about the defendant’s insurance coverage.

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January 13, 2022

Lawsuit Cost Financing: Your shelter from the omicron storm

Though it appeared for much of the last quarter of 2021 that the pandemic might finally be winding down, the subsequent tsunami of omicron variant cases guarantees that the continuances and backlogs that have plagued courtrooms for nearly three years continue for some time to come.

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January 7, 2022

5 reasons you should not let the LevelEsq (r)evolution pass you by in 2022

‍LevelEsq is proud to have covered more than $100 million in case costs for plaintiff lawyers with Litigation Cost Protection (LCP), a revolutionary product that reimburses all case expenses in the event of a loss at trial.

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December 21, 2021

A LevelEsq Christmas Carol

Though Ebenezer Scrooge’s story proved more adaptable to popular media, let us not forget his second-cousin Elijah Esquire—from the plaintiff’s attorney side of the family—was also visited by four ghosts one Christmas Eve.

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December 20, 2021

Professional Liability: Don’t Overlook the Trees for the Forest

A March 2021 decision in the U.S. District Court in Nevada illustrates how focus on the merits of a lawsuit can misdirect one from important procedural details. The plaintiff in the case, a Nevada-based importer of luxury vehicles from China, made some solid allegations of legal malpractice against a global law firm.

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December 9, 2021

Experience may be improving lawyer opinions of litigation finance

In September 2021, Bloomberg Law conducted a limited survey of 38 litigation finance providers and 37 attorneys who had used or were interested in using litigation finance.

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December 9, 2021

Media companies deploy litigation funding narrative in effort to undercut credibility of Tinder plaintiffs’ witnesses

The developers of the Tinder app have sued billionaire mogul Barry Diller’s companies, Match Group and IAC, in New York state court for allegedly engaging in misleading tactics to cause the platform to be undervalued during the media groups’ acquisition of it.

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December 9, 2021

U.S. Chamber lobbies Supreme Court about hazards of secret litigation funding

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has argued in an amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court that undisclosed litigation funding agreements endanger the American justice system.

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December 3, 2021

Will Mass Tort Bankruptcies Eat into Your Firm’s Bottom Line?

If you handle product liability cases, you’re familiar with mass tort bankruptcy. Beginning with asbestos litigation in the 1980s, defendant companies confronting vast financial losses from mass tort actions have increasingly turned to Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

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November 10, 2021

To Unmask a Litigation Funder?

Perhaps no case has brought more media attention to litigation finance than Hulk Hogan’s sex tape lawsuit against Gawker Media.

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November 10, 2021

Federal District Court Denies Reimbursement of Litigation Funding Expenses in Class Action

In the Northern District of California, the court denied class counsel’s request for recovery of litigation funding expenses from the corpus of a class settlement.

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November 10, 2021

Crowdfunding Litigation with Cryptocurrency

Apothio LLC, a research group focused on the commercialization of hemp, is financing its civil case against California law enforcement by selling off crypto tokens in an “initial litigation offering” (ILO).

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November 9, 2021

LevelEsq Alleviates Personal Injury Case Funding Concerns

Find out how revolutionary litigation funding and case cost insurance tools from LevelEsq level the playing field and increase profitability for Personal Injury cases—past, present, and future.

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November 8, 2021

Nonlawyer Ownership of Law Firms: Coming to a Jurisdiction Near You?

Though some states now allow non-lawyers to own law firms, the practice is not without controversy.

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October 27, 2021

The LevelEsq (R)evolution is Set to Turn the Tide in Medical Malpractice Lawsuits

Though the negligence of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers can profoundly affect patients’ and their families’ lives, medical malpractice cases are complex and notoriously difficult to win. In addition, political lobbyists have spent an endless amount of money to convince the public that doctors can do no harm and that all medical malpractice cases are lawyer-driven and frivolous.

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October 17, 2021

Emerging possibility of required disclosure of litigation funding

As the public has become more aware of third-party litigation funding in recent years and judges and lawyers have grappled with the ethical implications of these arrangements, the concept of requiring parties to disclose information about litigation funding has gained traction.

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October 17, 2021

Gary Barnett is new head of International Legal Finance Association

In September, former U.S. Department of Justice official Gary Barnett became the new executive director and general counsel of the International Legal Finance Association (ILFA), a global organization for the commercial legal finance industry. In his time at DOJ, Barnett held various positions, including senior counselor to the attorney general, acting director in the Office of Victims of Crime, and acting chief of staff to ex-attorney general Matt Whitaker. Before his tour with the Justice Department, Barnett worked as a staffer for then-U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake.

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October 17, 2021

New findings shed light on the toll of debt on young lawyers

In September, the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division and AccessLex Institute released the results of a survey examining the effects of law school loans on career and life decisions of new lawyers. Last year, after survey results suggested that educational debt was causing young lawyers to choose jobs because of higher pay and to delay or miss out on things like getting married, having children or buying a home, the ABA began probing further.

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October 10, 2021

Tired of gender discrimination in the legal profession? Fight back with LevelEsq

Female attorneys deserve a weapon to fight back against long-standing disparities in pay and opportunities. Thanks to Litigation Cost Protection (LCP) and Lawsuit Cost Financing (LCF) from LevelEsq they finally have it.

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September 28, 2021

Can I Pass The Litigation Cost Protection Premium Through to My Client?

LevelEsq’s founders, Larry Bassuk and Justin Leto, are both members of the Florida Bar. After the launch of Litigation Cost Protection (“LCP”) in 2016, they began the process of obtaining a written ethics opinion from the Florida Bar that would permit the premium ‘pass through.’ It was the beginning of a winding road that ultimately led them to Tallahassee to make their case to the Florida Bar Board of Governors.

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September 23, 2021

How Do I Leverage My Level Insurance Policy?

Welcome to the LevelEsq (r)evolution. Did you know that, in addition to protecting your downside economic risk, LCP can help you increase the profits you earn on a case? Don’t choose between sword or shield. Find out how LevelEsq can arm you with both, level the litigation playing field, and transform you into a lawyer with which to be reckoned.

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September 21, 2021

Litigation Cost Protection Provides Greater Access to the Courts – Here’s Why

Think Litigation Cost Protection (LCP) might encourage attorneys to throw a case? Think again. Find out why LCP actually encourages proper resolution, not the opposite.

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September 20, 2021

LevelEsq’s Litigation Cost Protection—a Vital Safeguard for Trial Lawyers

It was a stressor only all too common in the life of a trial lawyer. The more of his own money attorney Justin Leto invested in a contingency case, the more profound the risk to his business. It seemed like such a basic, fundamental problem that was being shared by so many other litigators. Why had no one yet proposed a solution?

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September 13, 2021

Law firm finance: can the defense compel discovery?

A law or policy that requires an enterprise to disclose where it gets its capital could be considered ludicrous. So, why are lawyers and law firms -- particularly those that represent victims suffering the consequences of others’ negligence – treated differently?

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September 12, 2021

LevelEsq’s New Lawsuit Cost Financing Raises the Bar

Devising a more sophisticated strategy to finance your case costs can free up cash spent on existing cases -- i.e., refinance the costs and take the cash out . Explore how case cost financing has traditionally been done and compare it to the way things should be done to enhance your firm’s revenue and income.

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January 10, 2019

FC 42: PI & Other Firms Using Litigation Insurance with Level Insurance’s Justin Leto

Jason Hartman talks with Justin Leto, co-founder of Level Insurance, about how his company is helping the legal profession by offering litigation insurance. This gives lawyers protection from lost expenses when working contingency cases.

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February 7, 2018

Litigation insurance costs may be passed to clients

The U.S. legal services market has within the past five years warmed up to the idea of litigation finance, a practice first adopted in Australia and then the U.K. A well-known British-based broker of litigation funding, TheJudge Group Holdings Ltd., will announce Wednesday it is launching in the U.S. with hopes to grow domestic awareness of another across-the-pond legal financial product: Litigation insurance for plaintiffs.

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June 13, 2017

Litigation Finance, Sure. Litigation Insurance? UK Broker Seeks US Sales

The U.S. legal services market has within the past five years warmed up to the idea of litigation finance, a practice first adopted in Australia and then the U.K. A well-known British-based broker of litigation funding, TheJudge Group Holdings Ltd., will announce Wednesday it is launching in the U.S. with hopes to grow domestic awareness of another across-the-pond legal financial product: Litigation insurance for plaintiffs.

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May 31, 2017

Litigation Cost Insurance Covers Losing Plaintiffs’ Expenses

Plaintiffs lawyers know the rule: If they lose their lawsuits, they and their clients pay the expenses, while defendants often have insurance to defray legal costs. But what if there were a way to mitigate the financial risk plaintiffs assume in bringing a case to trial?

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March 5, 2017

This May Not be the News You Want But Bringing a Lawsuit Just Got Easier

There is some bad news for people who fret our society is excessively litigious. A startup in the normally stuffy insurance industry has just made bringing a lawsuit less risky.

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November 17, 2016

Miami lawyers Roll out Litigation Insurance in New Jersey

Justin Leto and Larry Bassuk were two trial attorneys in Miami when, from experience, they saw a need for a service: litigation insurance. It’s now available in New Jersey, through their company Level Insurance.

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September 11, 2016

Lawyers Launch Insurance Policy for Contingency Cases

When Justin Leto was a young plaintiffs attorney, another lawyer in his building asked how he dealt with the financial risk of pursuing litigation. Could his firm somehow insure legal costs in case the jury returned a defense verdict?

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September 11, 2016

Two Florida Litigators Found First U.S. Litigation Cost Protection Insurance Company

Two Miami-based litigators once asked themselves why there was no insurance coverage for attorneys to cover the costs of pursuing a case.

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August 15, 2016

Now Lawyers Can Get Reimbursed Even If They Lose a Case

When David Brill lost a trial for a client who fell off his neighbor’s ladder, it was a rare failure for his three-member Florida law firm. It also cost him $30,000 in expenses since he’d taken the case on contingency, meaning the client paid nothing and he took all the risk.

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July 31, 2016

Fla. Attys Launch Litigation Cost Insurance Co.

A new insurance product created by two Florida attorneys could help lawyers working on a contingency fee basis manage risk by allowing them to recoup costs if they lose in court.

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July 28, 2016

Can You Still Get Paid Even After Losing a Case?

We’ve all heard of car insurance, but what about case insurance? Well, that’s the basic service being offered by two personal injury lawyers out in Florida who launched their company Level Insurance last month.

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July 21, 2016

What if You Could Be Paid to Lose a Case?

Garden variety litigation financing has been around quite a while in the personal injury arena. Parties (typically plaintiffs) are given up-front cash in exchange for a portion of their payout from a case when they win. Of late, it has expanded to other lines of practice and warrants keeping an eye on it if you practice in family law or business litigation.

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July 19, 2016

Lawyers Launch Insurance For When A Case Crashes

By Daniel Fisher You buy insurance to cover you in case your car crashes. Now lawyers can buy insurance in case their case crashes. It’s another take on a movement that has some academic street cred: Financing plaintiffs so they can persist longer in litigation against corporations and insurance companies that normally have cash and […]

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How can we help your firm?

Lawsuit Cost Financing

Quick and seamless access to capital to fund your case expenses.

Litigation Cost Protection

Protect the downside with insurance coverage for litigation costs.