The first and only independent merchant

bank for law markets

Alternative litigation finance (ALF) has come of age. Yet suppliers offer limited options and give advice that favors their own products. It is time for independent, expert ALF advice and sourcing.

Legis works with leading law firms and investors to finance and mitigate investment risk in large commercial litigation and arbitration.

The first and only independent merchant

bank for law markets

Alternative litigation finance (ALF) has come of age. Yet suppliers offer limited options and give advice that favors their own products. It is time for independent, expert ALF advice and sourcing.

Legis works with leading law firms and investors to finance and mitigate investment risk in large commercial litigation and arbitration.

Advisory and Intermediary Services

Legis provides independent structuring and investment advice to meet individual claim investment opportunities or firm-wide portfolio management needs.  Our advisory services extend to claim-related insurance and capital investment; contingent-fee asset portfolio management; claim valuation and claim underwriting; fairness opinions; and claim investment syndication, structuring and buy-out. Acting as intermediaries, we also arrange and broker ALF and related investments and conduct market auctions to obtain competitive pricing. Legis also advises institutional investors on the ALF asset class.

Legal Cost & Contingent Fee Insurance

Through our affiliated brokerage in Bermuda and our wide circle of insurance industry colleagues, Legis provides insurance and financial guaranty strategies and products to hedge risk in commercial claim investments.  For law firms, these products include Pinnacle, a policy of insurance or financial guaranty that covers up to 80% of legal fees and costs invested in a claim or portfolio of claims.  For law firm clients, they include adverse cost and fee risk insurance.  For claim investors, available products include investment risk insurance.

Alternative Litigation Finance Investment

Legis and its affiliates invest in large commercial claims and portfolios of claims pursued through litigation or arbitration. We also  syndicate ALF investments through a wide and diverse range of capital partners we have traded with over the years.  Our capital partners include not only so-called “litigation funders”, but also university endowments, leading charitable foundations, global investment banks and funds, family offices and high-net-worth individuals.  We are skilled at matching the right capital with the right investment, and are equipped to provide bridge capital on an accelerated basis to help capture fast-moving opportunities.

Legis Purple Paper Series – Topic 1

Best Practices by U.S. Lawyers Dealing with ALF Suppliers

The following request by a lawyer to a “litigation funder” is now commonplace:

My client has a very valuable claim, but doesn’t want to pay me by the hour. Will you buy part of his anticipated recoveries so he can pay me my regular hourly rates?  I’m authorized to get the deal closed.

It is common sense: lawyers put themselves at unnecessary risk when placing litigation finance for their clients. The conflicts-of-interest and other ethics dangers are obvious, and sound business practice should not be overlooked.  Can the lawyer expertly handle the ALF project?  Is it  cost-efficient for the lawyer to focus on a complex funding transaction rather than the underlying litigation?  Shouldn’t lawyers, particularly specialists at major law firms, “stick to their knitting”?

The American Bar Association has studied the ethics implications and made its views clear.  Its report on the subject makes suggestions that are actually quite simple: hire an independent expert to take over the role of sourcing, placing, structuring and/or documenting the ALF investment.

Drawing heavily from the ABA Report, Legis has developed a set of Best Practices for Law Firms Seeking ALF–-practical guidelines for firms facing ALF needs or opportunities.  The Best Practices are supported by a Legis Purple Paper, the first in a series, entitled Treasure Chest or Pandora’s Box: Best Practices for Law Firms Seeking ALF.

Request the Purple Paper

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