Standard Oil Octopus: Past as Prologue

Stephen D. Susman, the founder of my firm and a titan in the antitrust bar, pioneered representing private antitrust plaintiffs on a contingent-fee basis.

Nobody knew better than Steve how to manage risk in antitrust cases — how to choose them, staff them, litigate them,

FundingSizable expenses

A big commercial case can cost millions in expenses — by which I mean out-of-pocket costs that the plaintiff or its counsel must pay net of attorneys’ fees. A portfolio of cases — for infringement of a patent or family of patents, say — can run many millions more. Who will bear that burden? And what will it cost?
Continue Reading The Cost of Third-Party Litigation Funding

Risk KnobPrologue

A story from a long-ago summer day highlights the big rewards that you can earn from taking purposeful risks.

In a little over a month, on August 5, 2015, 151 years will have passed since a commander took a gamble during the Battle of Mobile Bay.

The commander knew that the defenders had rigged

ContractKeys to the court house 

The contingent-fee option enables a claimant who has a valuable claim but can't afford hourly fees to hire a lawyer. He pays with a promise to share his recovery with the lawyer in return for the lawyer's sharing the many risks of pursuing a claim — including the risk of

Preview-microThe collapse in oil prices since June 2014, and the significant drop in those for natural gas, have put tremendous pressures on relationships in the industry. The stresses — between operators and non-operators, lessees and royalty owners, principals and contractors, investors and investees, among others — make legal disputes both more likely and harder to

Since 1982, California law has required contingent fee agreements between a lawyer and a "plaintiff" to meet certain tests. 

Ten years after the law took effect, a California court of appeals held that the law doesn't apply "outside the litigation context."  Franklin v. Appell, 8 Cal. App. 4th 875, 892 (Cal. App. 1992) (involving

Does a contingent fee give lawyers too much control over public nuisance cases? 

Or can public entities control the lawyers enough to prevent abuse of the governmental power they wield?

The Supreme Court of California heard argument on those questions this week (finally).  Kimberley Kralowec at The UCL Practitioner gives us a blow-by-blow.

The Rhode