Having been invited by the Law Society to take part in a plenary session on third party funding, in a conference run for commercial litigators, it was a stark reminder of how we’re living through a time of unprecedented uncertainty in the costs arena.
How many times must I have said ‘The Jackson reforms have radically altered the ATE insurance and Third Party Funding market’ and how many times others like me must have said the same thing, since April.
The statement is true, yet it is a dramatic over-simplification which renders its truth effectively meaningless. It’s both a gross under-statement and an exaggeration at the same time! Frankly, it’s taxing to grasp the far-reaching consequences of LASPO and mentally project forward to imagine the long term effects. Indeed, it’s simply tiring to contemplate how to cope with the current problems manifested by the changes. It’s not surprising then that, 6 months on, we’re all so interested to see how other parts of the legal community are handling the impact of Jackson’s recommendations.
The Law Society’s conference gave me solace in that it seems everyone is in the same boat. Insurers, funders, brokers, lawyers, costs draftsmen, costs assessors, etc. are all struggling to deal with the uncertainty in the DBA Regulations, the question of how costs masters will interpret the proportionality requirements, the potential for solicitor-client conflicts of interest and the practical realities of costs budgeting amongst other things.
Whislt we can’t try and solve every one of these problems for you, the advice I have for lawyers in these turbulent times is this…
Take the headache of sourcing ATE insurance and funding products off your desk. Outsource the task to a specialist broker capable of doing the running around for you. The decision in Motto v Trafigura makes it clear that you cannot recover the costs associated with securing a financing package for your client so every hour spent trying to navigate the market in what is considered the most turbulent time in its history, is effectively wasted. Unless of course the firm chooses to pass that cost on to its client, which most don’t.
With so many new products and variances in pricing and structures, there’s no need to spend hours (if not days) sourcing and presenting litigation funding and insurance options if a broker like TheJudge can help you put the client in a position to make informed decisions.
If you would like to discuss how we can save your firm time and money in navigating the litigation funding and insurance market, please don’t hesitate to contact us.