The cost of pursuing a legal dispute can be a serious deterrent to a commercial organisation that has a good claim to make. We offer our clients a funding solution that provides certainty and transparency on costs and removes the risk of pursuing the dispute from a company’s balance sheet.

This offers a different way to meet the legal and related costs of a legal dispute. Usually, lawyers’ fees and other costs are invoiced to the client at intervals whilst the claim is in progress. Such costs must be paid, whether or not the claim is eventually successful.

How does the funding solution work?

To assess whether the funding solution is right for your claim, we will discuss and review your case by phone at no charge. If our funding solution is potentially right for both you and for us, we will then undertake an initial, thorough appraisal of your claim usually for a fixed fee. Our appraisal report will include an assessment of the legal and factual merits (which may include an opinion from a barrister); expert opinion on technical issues of your claim or the amount of your loss (if required); and whether we will take on the claim under what is known as a “damages-based agreement”. We will also form an opinion on the ability of your opponent to pay the damages we believe may be due (as it does neither of us any good to pursue someone without the ability to pay).

What is the benefit of a damages-based agreement?

Under this agreement, if your dispute is successful and you win your claim, you agree to pay us a percentage of the total amount that is successfully recovered. We will pay everyone else who is needed for your claim, including barristers, experts, court fees, insurance premiums and all other costs. However, if your dispute is not successful, you will pay us nothing other than the fixed fee for the initial appraisal. In this sense, the fee structure is “no win, no fee”.

If you decide to proceed with your legal dispute on this basis, we will keep the merits of the case under review and regularly update our initial report. We will also take out insurance for your benefit that will pay out against a claim for costs against you if you should lose. Clearly, neither of us want or expect to lose but there is never any guarantee and we seek to protect you against that, hopefully remote, eventuality.

Your claim will be led by an appropriate and highly experienced Fox Williams partner, who will draw on a wider team as required to progress your case effectively.

What happens if the situation changes?

Should you decide not to pursue your claim you will only pay for the initial appraisal. If you decide to settle your claim, we will assist you with settlement discussions.

Funding your commercial dispute FAQs

For breach of contract, the general rule is that if you wish to bring court proceedings, you must do so within six years of the date on which the contract was breached.

For negligence, the claim should be brought within six years of the date on which you suffered loss as a result of the defendant’s breach of duty.

The above time limits are just a general rule of thumb and we can advise you further on any limitation issues.

This will depend on the type of dispute, how complex it is and Court timetabling. We can provide advice specific to your dispute. Complex or high value disputes, typically those worth over £100,000, generally take over a year to reach trial.

Litigation is the method of resolving a dispute where a judge decides a case in Court. Arbitration is similar to litigation, except an arbitrator (typically appointed by the parties) takes the place of a judge and it is not a formal court process. The outcome of arbitration is confidential and binding.

The cost of arbitration depends on a number of factors, such as how many arbitrators are required (as the parties are liable for the arbitrators’ fees), how many parties there are and how complicated the legal and factual questions are. Arbitration can be cheaper than litigation, but this is not always the case.

Almost never. If someone you are suing has no money or other assets in England and Wales which could be used to pay you, there is no way to recover your debt and will just be incurring additional costs in the attempt. If you are aware that a person or company which owes you money is going through bankruptcy or liquidation proceedings, you should register as a creditor in order to stand a chance of recovering your debt as part of those proceedings.

It is not uncommon for emergency situations to arise, where immediate action is required to protect you. We can help you in these situations by applying to the court for:

  1. Search and seizure orders – these orders allow us to search a defendants’ premises (in the presence of an independent solicitor) for crucial documents or items. This is usually done where a defendant is liable to destroy crucial documents and condemning evidence.
  2. Negative injunctions – these are orders that stop your opponent taking certain damaging action.
  3. Positive injunctions – these are orders that require your opponent to take certain positive action.
  4. Freezing orders – it may be possible to obtain an order to freeze your opponent’s bank accounts and assets to prevent those assets being dissipated or moved out of the jurisdiction.

Yes, the rules are clear that you must disclose all documents within your control that:

  1. You rely on;
  2. Adversely affect your own case;
  3. Adversely affect another party’s case;
  4. Support another party’s case; or
  5. You are required to disclose by a relevant practice direction.

This duty extends to any documents you find at a later date as well. This means that an unhelpful document that comes to light after initial disclosure will need to be disclosed to the other side as soon as possible.

"Great availability and hard-working ethic; very good client relationships; thoroughly professional."


Legal 500 2021

"Fox Williams is an impressive London law firm with significant experience in the international field."


Chambers UK 2020

"Peter Ashford is a first-class international lawyer with considerable knowledge and ability in the field of international arbitration."


Chambers UK 2020

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