Washington – The American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA) commends the Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware for issuing a standing order requiring litigants to disclose information about third-party litigation funding agreements that are based on the results of the litigation or "a non-monetary result that is not in the nature of a personal loan, bank loan or insurance." Stef Zielezienski, APCIA’s executive vice president and chief legal officer, released the following statement:
“APCIA commends the Chief Judge’s action to require litigants to disclose information about third-party litigation financing agreements.
“Efforts to commoditize or turn an investment profit from our justice system should be subject to close scrutiny and made transparent. The last thing that we need is more incentives to profit from filing lawsuits, rather than getting to the facts of the dispute and resolving that dispute in a fair manner.
“Third party litigation financing is estimated to be a $11-12 billion industry in the U.S. and growing. This should concern everyone, particularly where that financing occurs away from the public view and oversight.
“By its very nature, third party litigation financing promotes speculative litigation and increases costs for everyone. At its worst, outside investment in litigation financing dependent on a successful verdict creates incentives to prolong litigation.
“APCIA calls on more federal courts and the states to adopt common-sense reforms. Transparency in third party litigation financing can help end lawsuit abuse and bring balance to the civil justice system.
“After all, reporting and disclosure rules are the norm when parties engage with other branches of government. Why should engagement in the judicial system be different?”