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To litigate or not to litigate? The impacts of third-party financing on litigation

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  • Deffains, Bruno
  • Desrieux, Claudine

Abstract

In this paper, we analyze three different ways to finance litigation, namely (i) self-finance by plaintiffs, (ii) contingent fees arrangements and (iii) third-party financing. We show how they impact the access to justice, and the decision to settle or to go to court, when claims can be meritorious or frivolous. Our results show that third-party financing does not always increase the access to justice for a plaintiff, and may even decrease the equilibrium settlement amount. It also increases the number of frivolous claims.

Suggested Citation

  • Deffains, Bruno & Desrieux, Claudine, 2015. "To litigate or not to litigate? The impacts of third-party financing on litigation," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 178-189.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:irlaec:v:43:y:2015:i:c:p:178-189
    DOI: 10.1016/j.irle.2014.08.005
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Daniel F. Rubinfeld & Suzanne Scotchmer, 1993. "Contingent Fees for Attorneys: An Economic Analysis," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(3), pages 343-356, Autumn.
    2. Roland Kirstein & Neil Rickman, 2004. ""Third Party Contingency" Contracts in Settlement and Litigation," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 160(4), pages 555-555, December.
    3. Neil Rickman & Paul Fenn & Alastair Gray, 1999. "The reform of Legal Aid in England and Wales," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 20(3), pages 261-286, September.
    4. Winand Emons & Nuno Garoupa, 2006. "US-style contingent fees and UK-style conditional fees: agency problems and the supply of legal services," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(5), pages 379-385.
    5. Andrew F. Daughety & Jennifer F. Reinganum, 2014. "The Effect of Third-Party Funding of Plaintiffs on Settlement," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(8), pages 2552-2566, August.
    6. Heyes, Anthony & Rickman, Neil & Tzavara, Dionisia, 2004. "Legal expenses insurance, risk aversion and litigation," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 107-119, March.
    7. Winand Emons, 2007. "Conditional versus contingent fees," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(1), pages 89-101, January.
    8. Dana, James D, Jr & Spier, Kathryn E, 1993. "Expertise and Contingent Fees: The Role of Asymmetric Information in Attorney Compensation," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(2), pages 349-367, October.
    9. Antony Dnes & Neil Rickman, 1998. "Contracts for Legal Aid: A Critical Discussion of Government Policy Proposals," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 247-265, May.
    10. Cotten, Stephen J. & Santore, Rudy, 2012. "Contingent fee caps, screening, and the quality of legal services," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 317-328.
    11. Paul Fenn & Neil Rickman, 2010. "The Empirical Analysis of Litigation Funding," Chapters,in: New Trends in Financing Civil Litigation in Europe, chapter 7 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Miceli, Thomas J, 1994. "Do Contingent Fees Promote Excessive Litigation?," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(1), pages 211-224, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:gamebe:v:109:y:2018:i:c:p:625-647 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Landeo, Claudia M. & Nikitin, Maxim, 2018. "Financially-constrained lawyers: An economic theory of legal disputes," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 625-647.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Third-party financing; Litigation financing; Frivolous claims; Transaction costs;

    JEL classification:

    • K0 - Law and Economics - - General
    • K41 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Litigation Process

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