Two recent rulings in the US have killed the litigation-funding model for FCA whistleblower lawsuits, according to Alison Frankel of Reuters. More from Reuters.
Six Chinese banks weren’t liable for a potential $150 million in sanctions for failing to freeze the assets of hundreds of Nike counterfeiters, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week. Next Investments LLC, a Houston-based unit of litigation finance firm Tenor Capital Management LP, bought the rights to the $1.8 billion default award from Nike but failed to seek enforcement of the freeze against the banks for nearly six years before asking the court to hold them in contempt, U.S. Circuit Judge Michael Park wrote for a unanimous three-judge panel.
Keller Lenkner, the US law firm founded by partner Ashley Keller, managing partner Travis Lenkner and Keller’s business partner Adam Gerchen after they sold their litigation finance fund, Gerchen Keller Capital, to Burford Capital in a $160 million deal, is expanding rapidly. It is opening an office in Washington D.C., its third city since launching in Chicago in 2018. The firm has planted its flag in mass arbitrations, using it as a strategy against companies like Amazon and Intuit which have required customers to arbitrate claims rather than file class actions.
London’s Court of Appeal made a U-turn last week by agreeing to reopen a $7 billion lawsuit against Anglo-Australian mining giant BHP, reviving a case over a dam rupture behind Brazil’s worst environmental disaster. PGMBM, who is bringing the claim with the backing of third party funding on behalf of 200,000 claimants, revived the case in April by applying for an oral Court of Appeal hearing – reserved only for exceptional cases – and arguing that the appeal judge had not properly grappled with arguments about why the case should proceed.