Firm Expansion and Growth Using Portfolio Funding


Law firms exploring strategic growth have a new financing option to consider. By securing funding against a portfolio of three or more commercial litigation cases on a partial contingency basis, firms gain access to capital provided by Bentham. That capital can be used for any purpose, including hiring attorneys and opening new offices.

While law firms have traditionally taken bank loans or used their own partner equity to cover expansion costs, litigation finance presents an appealing new option for a number of reasons. First, unlike bank loans, the capital deployed by funders like Bentham is not treated as debt. Instead, it is a non-recourse investment. If the cases in the funded portfolio do not result in fee revenue, the firm owes the funder nothing – not even the original investment. So the firm’s capital reserves will never be depleted to repay a funder.

Second, Bentham offers an additional safety net with portfolio funding by capping the returns from portfolio investments. Capped returns provide predictability for the law firms and often result in net fees that are twice Bentham’s return. In fact, Bentham has designed its portfolio funding product to enable firms to do better than Bentham. Why?

When a firm accepts portfolio funding, our investment risk is lower since the risk is spread across many cases, rather than just one. We face less risk of losing our principal, and the law firm takes on less risk handling the cases because we typically cover half of the fees while charging a full contingency. The win-win design has helped us forge nearly a dozen partnerships with firms that appreciate the distinct advantages of portfolio funding.

What are the Funding Requirements?

To be eligible for funding, a portfolio must meet the following requirements:

  1. Three or more commercial cases.
  2. Total funding requested must exceed $2,000,000.
  3. Defendants must have a clear ability to pay judgments.

Portfolio funding is not right for every firm, but it is a powerful option to fuel expansion and growth for firms with litigation practices and an appetite for taking measured risk. Bentham offers an interactive model, the Bentham Accelerator, that firms can use to test how funding could impact their business.

To learn how portfolio funding can make a difference for your law firm, contact us for a consultation.