Clients of international firm Pinsent Masons will receive discounted rates under a deal announced with the UK’s largest litigation funder this week. Augusta Ventures, which has £150m of capital, said it will accept £25m of claims from Pinsent Masons. The firm’s clients will benefit from 'preferred rates' and a fast-tracked due diligence process.
Augusta refused to put a figure on the discount but said it intends to fund the entire cost of pursuing claims, including all lawyer and expert fees, and that claimants will pay nothing if their claims are unsuccessful. A joint committee will meet regularly to review claims.
Pinsent Masons will not take commission and claimed its decision to enter the ‘unique’ arrangement’ with Augusta was not a commercial one.
Pinsent Masons partner Mark Roe, who is in charge of third party funding, said: ‘We know that the costs of pursuing a justified claim often deter our clients from obtaining justice and recovering money due to them. Often, even if clients have funds available, they prefer to invest them in their business rather than in pursuing claims.
‘We’ve been able to negotiate considerably better terms than our clients would typically receive from funders.’
Alastair Morrison, head of client relationships at Pinsent Masons, added: ‘Our clients are operating in industries that are experiencing profound change. We’re investing in services that help them to respond to these tectonic shifts, changing our business from a law firm into an international professional services business with law at its core.’
A survey by litigation funder Burford Capital revealed that over 60% of companies had avoided court action because of legal expenses.