Appeal judges reject law firm’s claim for fees under insolvency CFA

rcj 3

The Court of Appeal has rejected a law firm’s claim to its legal fees in a battle with a liquidator over an conditional fee agreement. Lord Justice Hamblen said there was a “shared common understanding” that its fees would be paid from recoveries and the liquidator would not be personally liable for any shortfall.

August 8th, 2017

Court of Appeal: claimants cannot “blow hot and cold” with QOCS

RCJ portrait

Claimants cannot “blow hot and cold” with Qualified One-Way Costs Shifting by terminating one conditional fee agreement and signing a new one just to get the benefit of costs protection, the Court of Appeal has ruled.

August 3rd, 2017

Burford ramps up portfolio finance activity with first UK firm deal

Guy Harvey

Burford Capital has agreed a “multi-million pound” portfolio financing agreement with Shepherd & Wedderburn, which it said is the first of its kind to be offered by a top 100 UK law firm and major funder. The deal provides flexible capital that Shepherd & Wedderburn can use “to expand its ability to offer alternative fee arrangements to clients and grow the firm’s reach in commercial litigation and arbitration”.

August 2nd, 2017

Burford posts “best ever” interim results

Chris Bogart new

Litigation funder Burford Capital has announced its strongest ever results, with profits for the first half of 2017 greater than the whole of 2016, driven by rising client demand. Highlights from the financial results for the year ended 30 June 2017 included an increase in income by 130% to $175.5m (£133.5m), and operating profit up by 151% to $155m.

July 27th, 2017

Court of Appeal rejects bid to invalidate CFAs signed at “chaotic” meeting of class action members


The Court of Appeal has dismissed a technical challenge to conditional fee agreements (CFAs) signed by members of a class action during a meeting organised for that purpose. It was one of the steady trickle of cases challenging CFAs under the Cancellation of Contracts Made in a Consumer’s Home or Place of Work etc. Regulations 2008.

July 25th, 2017

Tribunal throws out largest-ever class action but gives boost to third-party funding

Walter Merricks

The Competition Appeal Tribunal last week threw out what would have been the largest opt-out collective action since the procedure was introduced – but at the same time gave a boost to third-party funders by dismissing objections to the funding agreement. Under it, Burford Capital was set to receive at least £135m in the event of a successful outcome.

July 24th, 2017

QC proposes ‘no disclosure’ rule for arbitrations

Peter Rees QC

Arbitrations should begin with a default position of no disclosure of documents, a leading QC has argued. Peter Rees QC said for many disputes, each side had “all the documents it needs” and disclosure was a “time-consuming and expensive luxury”.

July 21st, 2017

Hausfeld and Burford join scramble for truck cartel clients

Motorway traffic jam

US class action law firm Hausfeld has struck a deal with top litigation funder Burford Capital to support the claim it is bringing in England against truck manufacturers found guilty of illegal price fixing, the second major announcement of funded litigation over the cartel in a month.

July 11th, 2017

Neuberger indicates support for contingent legal aid fund

Inaugural Harbour Litigation Funding Annual Lecture - 8 May 2013

The president of the Supreme Court has indicated his support for some form of contingent legal aid fund (CLAF), using third-party litigation funders as a model. The idea of the CLAF has been debated for decades and is currently being examined by a working party, set up at the urging of Lord Justice Jackson.

July 5th, 2017

Court of Appeal begins hearing CFA assignment case

Judicial Roundtable

The profession should soon have an answer to the question of when a conditional fee agreement can be assigned from one law firm to another as the Court of Appeal is hearing a test case today. It was one of a series of lower-court ruling last year to address the issue and between them cause confusion in the profession.

July 5th, 2017


Third-party funders – access to justice warriors?

Christopher Deadman 2

Comments on UNISON’s landmark victory against the government in respect of employment tribunal fees got me thinking about the whole ‘access to justice’ argument and the role that third-party funders play. I have sat in lots of meetings over the years where funders, some even with a straight face, claim that access to justice is a cornerstone of their business. That is a statement of almost North Korean bogusness. Funders who trot out the access to justice argument are guilty of conflating the by-product of their business with the

August 17th, 2017

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