Putting our Money Where Our Mouth Is: Access to Justice Initiatives
By enabling meritorious litigation to proceed to court, and ensuring that claims are properly resourced, Bentham has long provided access to justice to individuals and corporations. Bentham’s commitment to justice, however, extends beyond the individual cases that we fund.
In Australia, Bentham supports the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) and other organizations, by providing costs indemnities and disbursement funding for cases with a public interest imperative. In so doing, Bentham gives individuals or groups who have been discriminated against the opportunity to vindicate their rights, and holds discriminatory actors accountable for their conduct.
Bentham’s work with PIAC has included enforcing the guidelines for allowing wheelchair access in taxis, improving the next stop announcements on trains for the benefit of vision-impaired passengers, and enforcing the rights of wheelchair users to access buses.
Building on this history and our company values, in May 2016 Bentham announced that it is helping launch a new Civil Justice Research Institute at the University of California – Irvine. The Institute will study factors that limit access to America’s court system, including inadequate funding of courts, the increased use of compulsory arbitration clauses favoring businesses and limiting judicial review, and restrictions on class action lawsuits, among other issues. Bentham has committed $300,000 to the Institute, and will serve on its Advisory Board.
Bentham continues to be a leader in the litigation funding industry and a staunch advocate for access to justice.