Lisa Rickard and Anthony Sebok on the Ethics of Investing in Another’s Lawsuit

From the New York Times Room for Debate:

The disclosure that Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal, spent about $10 million to help the wrestler Hulk Hogan sue Gawker Media apparently because a Gawker blog outed him as gay years ago revealed for many the lucrative practice of investors paying for litigation in which they are not involved.

While Thiel’s motives were not profit driven, most investors seek a cut of any final judgment or settlement. Should third parties be allowed to invest in lawsuits or does that unduly influence them?

Lisa Rickard, president of the United States Chamber of Commerce Institute for Legal Reform, says no – This is Casino Litigation Where We All Lose

Anthony Sebok, professor of law at Benjamin N. Cardozo Law School, says yes – Third-Party Litigation Finance Promotes Justice and Deters Wrongdoing

 

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