Various ways to fund a contingent law firm.

  1. Options
    1. Pay with the firm’s current net cash flow
      1. Pros
        1. a. Easy
        2. b. Traditional method for paying for expansion
      2. Cons
        1. Ties up liquidity
        2. Expensive (i.e. lost opportunity cost)
        3. Tax burden due to using after tax dollars
        4. Growth limited to firm’s cash flow
    2. Borrow from a traditional bank
      1. Pros
        1. Limitless source of capital
        2. Current relationship-Operating & Trust accounts
        3. Frees up liquidity
      2. Cons
        1. Timely principal and interest payments required irrespective of cases settled
        2. Expensive-Firm “eats” the interest even though its for the benefit of the client
        3. Growth limited by firm’s ability to make timely payments
        4. Banking consolidation can mean new approach to lending to attorneys
        5. No value placed on contingent receivables
        6. Smaller lines because banks lend off cash flow or balance sheet
    3. Refer business to other attorneys
      1. Pros
        1. Easy
        2. Goodwill with other attorneys
      2. Cons
        1. Very expensive (giving up anywhere from 50-90% of the fees)
        2. Weakens your firm and strengthens your competition
  2. What to Look for in a Financial Partner
    1. Understands the unique characteristics of trial law firms.
      1. Uneven cash flows
      2. Client advances are contingent loans
      3. Large capital requirements required to prepare cases for settlement
    2. Program tailor-made for trial law firms
    3. Easy to use
    4. Inexpensive
    5. Limitless source of funds

About Bill Tilley

Bill Tilley, President and Chief Executive Officer – Bill Tilley is the President and CEO of Amicus Capital Services LLC and is responsible for managing day to day operations, marketing, originations and client relations. In addition Mr. Tilley serves on the credit committee along with the three other members. For the past ten years Mr. Tilley has been devoted to creating and then fine-tuning the legal finance industry. Mr. Tilley joined Themis Capital in 1999, launching the legal finance industry in California. Within two years California became the largest market for legal loans. Mr. Tilley was instrumental in growing Themis from $12 million in loans upon his arrival to more than $135 million in less than 4 years. After successfully winding down the Themis portfolio in 2004, Mr. Tilley became the largest broker of legal financial services while consulting exclusively for Counsel Financial Services through 2006. He continued his devotion to creating a full service financial services company that caters exclusively to the legal community leading to the launch of Amicus Capital Services, LLC in early 2007. In 2008 Mr. Tilley expanded Amicus’ financial offerings to include structured settlement/ fee products as well as financial advisory services. Mr. Tilley has personally originated more than $100 million in attorney loans and has participated in the origination of more than $200 million. Mr. Tilley counts several of the most successful plaintiff attorneys in the country as personal friends and has developed a network that includes thousands of invaluable industry contacts. As an expert on legal finance Mr. Tilley has spoken numerous times at attorney conferences throughout the country. In addition Mr. Tilley was recognized on Public Justices wall of honor for his efforts in promoting the non-profit public interest association.
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