Business of Law

Lawyer survey shows growing awareness and use of litigation finance

  • Print.

Litigation finance is gaining in popularity as more clients and law firms are figuring out how to use it.

That is the takeaway from a survey commissioned by litigation financing company Burford Capital, according to Liz Bigham, chief marketing officer at Burford who spoke with Bloomberg Law about the results.

Seventy percent of lawyers responding to the online portion of the survey said they believe their organizations have used litigation finance. That is a 637 percent increase from just under 10 percent in 2012, according to the online survey of 495 lawyers. The study is here, and a press release is here.

The survey cautions that lawyers could be overreporting their firm’s or company’s use of litigation financing if they perceive it as something innovative that should be used. In a separate telephone survey of 38 lawyers, about one-third said their organizations have used litigation finance, a 237 percent increase since 2012.

Seventy percent of the online respondents whose organizations have not yet used litigation finance said they’re likely to turn to it in the next two years, the survey found.

The lawyers participating in the online survey are from the United States (224 lawyers), the United Kingdom (196 lawyers) and Australia (75 lawyers). The biggest one-year increase in litigation finance was reported by the U.S. lawyers; their use of litigation finance increased 19 percent this year, compared to last year.

The lawyers interviewed are from the United States and abroad. They include partners at Dechert; Akin Gump; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Latham & Watkins; and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan. In-house lawyers interviewed worked at companies that include Mass Mutual, Brunswick Corp., Verizon, Caesars Entertainment, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Aon.

Give us feedback, share a story tip or update, or report an error.