Lawsuit lending can greatly alter a plaintiff’s decision-making process, leading them to reject a reasonable settlement offer for the chance at obtaining a higher verdict in court in order to pay off a high-interest loan. This jeopardizes the chance of any recovery, as litigation could result in a lower than expected verdict or a judgment in favor of the defendant. It also increases costs for defendants, who are forced to endure prolonged litigation.
There is also the ethical concern with inserting a third party into the case that compromises the interests of plaintiffs. It creates conflicts of interests for plaintiffs’ lawyers, who may develop referral relationships with certain lawsuit lenders and be expected to “steer” clients to those lenders.
ILR works to pass legislation that would provide safeguards against abusive lawsuits, and aims to provide transparency to all associated parties during litigation. Funding arrangements are often kept out of the public eye and hidden from parties and judges involved in litigation. The Litigation Funding Transparency Act would not only require third party litigation funding arrangements be disclosed during litigation, but also promote adequate recovery for plaintiffs and provide an overall unbiased civil justice system.