Monday, December 07, 2020

Law Commission of New Zealand Issues Paper on Class Actions and Litigation Funding

The New Zealand Law Commission has published an Issues Paper on Class Actions and Litigation Funding as part of a consultation on whether the country should adopt a statutory class actions regime and whether third party litigation funding would be desirable, and if so, how it should be regulated:

"Our review forms part of wider and ongoing efforts to improve the affordability and efficiency of litigation. As a mechanism for collective redress, class actions offer the prospect that claimants with a factual or legal issue in common can group their claims together into a single proceeding. Litigation funding provided by a commercial funder may facilitate access to civil justice by covering some or all of a claimant’s legal costs in exchange for an agreed percentage of any compensation awarded."

"At the same time, class actions and litigation funding have attracted some public notoriety in comparable jurisdictions overseas, where media attention has focussed on issues such as the wider impacts of class actions on the business environment and litigation funders’ commissions. The crucial question is whether the potential benefits of class actions and litigation funding in terms of promoting access to civil justice can be realised in a way that manages the risks and outweighs any disadvantages they may give rise to."

"This Issues Paper summarises the various issues that arise and explores some of the options for addressing them. We seek submissions and comment from interested parties. The Commission is committed to taking into account te ao Māori across all of its law reform work. The class action, as a mechanism for facilitating collective redress, may be particularly amenable to analysis from Māori perspectives and we welcome submissions and comment in that regard."

The paper looks at the situation in many other jurisdictions where a class actions regime does exist, including the US, Canada, Australia, and England and Wales.

Earlier Library Boy blog posts on the topic include:

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 8:11 pm


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