Pros of Lawsuit Funding

November 3rd, 2014

Pros of Lawsuit Funding:
1. Raise the Value of a Case – Lawsuit funding allows clients to get the full value settlement or judgment that they deserve instead of accepting a low-ball offer from the insurance carrier.
2. Lawsuit Funding advances money to pay the rent, put food on the table, pay medical bills, and pay daily expenses while a client waits for their case to end.
3. Non-recourse – there is no risk in getting this money. If a client loses their case, they owe absolutely nothing back to the lawsuit funding company.
4. Allows a Client to “Sleep at Night” – Clients can get anxious for their case to settle. By getting an advance, the client is put more at ease while they wait for the case to end.
5. No monthly payments – unlike a regular loan, a lawsuit cash advance is paid at the end along with the total proceeds from a successful case.

Call us Today if you have any further questions.

Attorney Requirements for Lawsuit Funding

November 1st, 2014

A lot of attorneys take a hands-off approach when it comes to lawsuit funding. Attorneys will tell the clients they are basically on their own if they want to go out there and get a cash advance from a funding company. This could be a huge mistake. A client may choose a lawsuit company that charges outrageous amounts of interest and fees leading to a difficulty in settling a case due to the fact there is such a large lien on the case from a lawsuit funding company.

Below are the 4 steps an attorney should take when a client is looking for a cash advance:

1. Explain the positives and negatives of receiving a lawsuit funding advance. Make sure you show the client exactly what they will owe at the end of 12, 24, and 36 months.
2. Do not allow a lawsuit funding company to ever influence your decision-making in a case.
3. Try and steer your client to a reputable funding company that offers the best and fairest pricing. Remember, most state laws allow an attorney to get involved in the selection of the funding company.
4. Finally, make sure an attorney finds out what the client is using the money for. This money should be used for rent, heat, etc. Do not allow your client to use this money to buy a new TV.

Call us today with any questions.

Lawsuit Funding Case Study

October 31st, 2014

An attorney is working on a personal injury case and receives an offer of $20,000 from the insurance company. The attorney feels that the offer is about 20% of what the true value of the case is actually worth – i.e. $100,000 – but has an obligation to report the offer to his/her client. The client wants to take the $20,000 offer and does not care if the case is worth $100,000. The client needs the money now and cannot wait another 6-12 months for the case to settle. They are now 3 months behind on their rent and a $20,000 settlement is looking great for their current needs.

What if the client take out a $5,000 from a Lawsuit Funding Company. Below is the Math on how much more a plaintiff would get from using a lawsuit funding company:

Quick Math with a 60/40 Split:
Option 1:
$20,000 Settlement
$12,000 to Client
$8,000 to Attorney

Option 2:
$100,000 Settlement
$53,000 to Client
$5,000 Advance from Lawsuit Funding Company
$40,000 to Attorney
$2,000 to Lawsuit Funding Company

As you can see, a 5K advance could turn into an extra $31,000 to a plaintiff. Call us today and we can walk you through the process.

Can Attorneys Give a Client Funding?

October 18th, 2014

Attorneys get the same question from their clients – can I borrow money from you while I wait for my settlement? The Answer is NO.
Per the Rules of Professional Conduct – attorneys in the state of PA are ethically prohibited from lending monies to their clients. The rationale behind this is the Ethics Board does not want an attorney to have a conflict of interest when it comes to settling their client’s cases.

For instance, if an attorney has given a client $5,000, and there is a decent offer on the table but not one that the attorney deems worthy of the case’s value, an attorney may take that offer due to the fact they already have $5,000 of their own money in the case.

Origins of Lawsuit Funding – 50 Years Ago

October 3rd, 2014

The lawsuit funding world really got going about 15 years ago. A few companies popped up and starting funding pre-settlement cases all over the country focusing on MVA and Med Mal Cases. But, if you look below, you can see where the idea sprouted up in the State of Pennsylvania.

Per the PA Supreme Court over 50 years ago:
The person who has, without fault on his part, been injured and who, because of his injury, is unable to work, and has a large family to support, and has not money to engage a lawyer, would be at the mercy of the person who disabled him because, being in a superior economic position, the injuring person could force on his victim, desperately in need of money to keep the candle of life burning in himself and his despondent ones, a wholly unconscionably meager sum in settlement, or even refuse to pay him anything at all. Any society, and especially a democratic one, worthy of respect in the spectrum of civilization, would never tolerate such a victimization of the weak by the mighty.
Richette vs. Solomon

Lawsuit Funding 101

October 1st, 2014

Quick outline of what exactly lawsuit funding is:

Lawsuit funding involves a cash advance by a lawsuit funding company to a personal injury plaintiff in exchange for a promise by the plaintiff to repay the amount of the advance plus interest, if and when the plaintiff receives a settlement or judgment with respect to his or her lawsuit. Plaintiffs often need this cash advance to help pay bills while they wait for their case to be resolved, particularly because it can often take 6 to 24 months, or even longer, to reach a case settlement or judgment. Lawsuit funding companies help people “bridge” the gap between when an accident occurs and when the plaintiff receives a payout in connection with his or her case.

The cash advance given by the lawsuit funding company is not considered a loan due to the fact that the plaintiff will not have any obligation to repay the cash advance if he or she loses the case. If you have a loan on your house or your car, you are required to make a monthly payment. But not with lawsuit funding. You only pay if and when your case is successfully settled or you receive a judgment. You also do not make any monthly payments. All payments are made at the end when the case settles or reaches a judgment.

Most lawsuit funding companies focus on motor vehicle accident cases or “MVA” cases and the average advance will be in the $500-$5,000 range. However, lawsuit funding companies make loans to many different kinds of personal injury plaintiffs and such companies are often willing to make much larger cash advances if a plaintiff has a particularly strong case and expects to receive a significant payout. Please take a look at our website for a list of all the cases we fund – www.lawsuitfundingsolutions.com

Call us today if you have any questions about lawsuit funding. Thanks.

A Quick Guide in Applying for Lawsuit Funding

September 23rd, 2014

There are a bunch of lawsuit funding companies to choose from and the numbers continue to grow. How do you know which lawsuit funding company is right for you? Obviously we would love it if you thought LawSuit Funding Solutions was the right funding company for you and your needs but we understand if you choose to go with another lawsuit funding company for a cash advance. Below is a quick guide in choosing the correct lawsuit funding company:

-Come up with a list of questions you may have for the underwriter or operator when you call. Make sure they answer all of your questions so you feel 100% comfortable in the process and the company.
-The biggest problem I have with other lawsuit lenders is they will never reveal or tell a client what their rate will be or how much they will owe. If a lawsuit funding company cannot tell you what their rates will be on a cash advance or if you do not understand how the interest/fee structure works, move on and fast.
-Apply with 1 lawsuit funding company. While you think this improves your chances, what it really does is wear out your paralegal and/or attorney who is sending documents 6 different times to each person requesting it. Some law firms will bill you for this! Because you need money quickly, you will need the firm to work quickly. Applying with many funders at once slows everyone down.
-Once you find the right lawsuit funding company, carefully review the cash advance agreement. What the company told you over the phone and what is on the cash agreement could be two totally different things. Again, make sure you are 100% comfortable in the agreement especially what the Total Amount Owed will be once your case receives a settlement or judgment.
-Understand that the advance process may take 24 to 48 hours to complete, if not longer depending how responsive your attorney is and how big of a case you have. Take your time. Do not take the first lawsuit cash advance you get if you don’t feel 100% ready.
-Less is more in the end. Lawsuit cash advances are expensive. Other lawsuit funding companies will never tell you that but we will. It can cost anywhere between 2-3% per month to get a cash advance from Lawsuit Funding Solutions and it is a lot more to borrow from other lawsuit funders. Therefore, only borrow the amount that is really necessary. Do not borrow $10,000 if you only need half of that. A lawsuit cash advance should be for necessary expenses = pay the rent/mortgage, heating bill, kid’s school expenses, etc.

Hopefully this will give you some supportive information to assist you in making the best decision possible. Fill out our application and see if LawSuit Funding Solutions is the right choice for you. We would love to help you in your financial time of need and get you to finish line in your case.

Thanks and call LFS at 267.546.3933 if you have any questions or would like to a quick application.

Legal Intelligencer Article About LFS

September 2nd, 2014

Litigation loans for clients in dire need of money to pay the rent or for an attorney trying to cover case expenses are generally viewed by lawyers as a costly option of last resort.
That perception is part of a stigma that litigation lender Brian Walters said the industry has justly earned, with some vendors charging astronomical interest rates and adding “big-time fees” on top of loans.
But not all litigation funding operations are the same, according to Walters, who heads Jenkintown, Pa.-based LawSuit Funding Solutions. Walters said he is trying to change lawyers’ perception of litigation funding—from something they view as more trouble than it’s worth—to a vehicle that can lead to a larger recovery for a client by providing the resources needed to see a case through, rather than settling too early due to lack of funding.
“The problem with most attorneys is they’ve all had one or two bad experiences with a litigation funding company and they shut down and say they don’t want to do this anymore,” Walters said.
Dean Lipson, who runs Blue Bell, Pa.-based Covered Bridge Capital, also said the industry has been tarnished by “bad actors.”
“There are companies out there that take advantage of consumers. An entire industry gets painted with a broad brush, I’m sure personal injury attorneys would be very sensitive to this because they seem to get attacked as well,” Lipson said.
But litigation funding can be highly beneficial, if an attorney knows what to look for in a lender, Walters said, with avoiding high interest rates being a primary concern.
“You have some companies charging 4 or 5 percent a month with big-time fees on top. A client could borrow $3,000 and owe $10,000 in three months,” Walters said. “Don’t go with the first company; you have to go out there and kick the tires, ask the right questions.”
McLaughlin & Lauricella co-founder Slade McLaughlin recalled the horror story of a client who many years ago came to him with $5,000 in litigation loans before her case had even been established.
“The interest was so out of control that when the litigation started two years later, $5,000 had grown to $90,000,” McLaughlin said.
However, McLaughlin said litigation loans are sometimes a “necessary evil” and finding companies with reasonable rates and establishing a ongoing relationship with them is key to effectively utilizing litigation funding.
“I work with companies that are very reasonable,” McLaughlin said. “If the client borrows $5,000, the client will never owe more than double, $10,000.”
Matthew Casey of Ross Feller Casey said it’s important for lawyers to understand when the subject of litigation funding comes up, that they are not their client’s financial adviser and that the client has to make his or her own decision on whether to pursue a loan.
“Having said that, it is inevitable, especially for a family confronting catastrophic injury, that funding needs arrive prior to the conclusion of the litigation,” Casey said.
Casey added, “Unless the funding needs relate to essential activities of daily living like shelter, food, and clothing and perhaps medical necessities, we tend to discourage our clients from seeking funding that may have a higher than usual interest rate.”
McLaughlin said he won’t allow clients to borrow money unless their case is strong, and under that same principle, some lenders won’t offer money.
For Walters, “the biggest thing we look at is who the attorney is,” he said.
“If the attorney takes strong cases and has a good win percentage, that’s the number one thing we look at,” he continued. “Number two is how strong the case is and what the client is going to use that money for.”
Lipson said in addition to examining the client’s injuries and liability theories, he also looks at insurance.
“We want to make sure that if the client does prevail, there’s going to be an insurance company there to pay the claim at the end of the day,” Lipson said.
Walters said the vetting process and building a rapport with attorneys helps to establish a good reputation in the field.
“Our business thrives on regulars, and when I say regulars I mean the attorney. A lot of the national companies have their commercials on TV” directed toward the plaintiff, Walters said, “but we’re going to pitch to the attorney, and pitch to him about why we’re the best out there … I’m looking to work with the attorneys over the next 15 to 20 years, I’m looking to foster those relationships.”
Lipson added that despite the stigma, the demand for litigation funding is increasing.
“The demand is huge and I think a big part of it is that insurance companies are playing hardball,” Lipson said. “They don’t want to pay reasonable amounts that should be commensurate with the case. Everything is a lowball and that has created this market.”
But with that demand comes a slew of competitors, Walters and Lipson said.
“It’s gotten very competitive because there’s no barrier to entry,” Lipson said. “If you’ve got a couple dollars and a friend who’s an attorney, you’re in business.”
Given the ease in which a litigation funding vendor can spring up, Lipson said he believes tighter regulation of the industry is coming.
Litigation funding “is a solution to a market problem, and then ultimately someone will complain because there are some bad actors out there that will prompt the legislature to regulate it,” Lipson said. “These days we have layer upon layer of government, there’s nothing out there that’s not regulated.”
In terms of loans for the purpose of footing litigation expenses such as discovery costs or hiring experts, some attorneys feel that it is never a good idea.
Scott Cooper of Schmidt Kramer in Harrisburg said using litigation funding to cover case expenses inherently leads to conflicts.
For example, Cooper said if a lawyer is loaned $100,000 for a case and is offered a settlement lower than the desired value by a defendant, that lawyer might be tempted to tell his or her client to accept the settlement in order to be able to pay back the loan, rather than risk going to trial and losing, thus putting the attorney in debt.
“If you’re doing personal injury work and you’re saying you’re good at it, you should be able to advance the cost and put your money where your mouth is. Or you refer the case out,” Cooper said.
P.J. D’Annunzio can be contacted at 215-557-2315 or pdannunzio@alm.com. Follow him on Twitter @PJDannunzioTLI.

Lawsuit Funding Process

July 14th, 2014

In order to Apply for Lawsuit Funding, you must do the following:

1. Call or Email our offices at 267.546.3933. We will take down your basic information and ask a few questions about your case.

2. After the application, we will contact your attorney and ask a few questions and request a few documents depending on the case – such as a police report, complaint, etc.

3. Once we receive the necessary documents, we will have an answer to you in 24-48 hours. We will let you know if we can fund, and how much we can fund.

Call or email us today.

Thanks

LFS
267.546.3933
rpierce@lawsuitfs.com

What to do while you wait for you Lawsuit to Settle

June 4th, 2014

Settling or receiving an advance on your case can take a long time. What happens when you cannot work and the bills continue to pile up. You are now 3 months behind on your rent or you haven’t paid your water bill since March.

When this occurs, many times plaintiffs will contact their attorney desperate to settle a case when there seems to be no other option to pay the bills. Personal injury attorneys know this is not in a plaintiffs’ best interest, but what can they do?

One option would be for the plaintiffs to contact their creditors and request deferment of debt until the case is settled. Sometimes the creditors will accept, sometimes they will not. If they do not, the creditors have every right to go after the plaintiffs for the money they are owed.

If the plaintiff’s home, health, or daily needs are in jeopardy, attorneys may suggest that their client contact a litigation funding company. Lawsuit funding fills a critical financial need for seriously injured victims in a pending claim that could take many months or years to resolve. Unlike a traditional bank loan, obtaining lawsuit funding requires no credit check, no employment verification, and no monthly payments. The lawsuit cash advance is based completely on the strength of the case. Furthermore, if there is no recovery, the plaintiff keeps the cash advance and pays nothing to the funding company.

Litigation funding is a great way for plaintiffs “to hang in there” until there case settles or receives a judgment. Instead of panicking and taking a lower offer, litigation funding allows the plaintiff to take a no-risk cash advance on the future proceeds of their case.