Recent Blog Posts

Special Offer: No admin fee and 18% interest for any competitor loan refinancing.

BridgePoint Financial Services | November 22, 2016 | Posted in News Updates

Don’t let your clients needlessly pay the higher loan costs of other litigation lenders. Until the end of this year, BridgePoint is extending a special offer to refinance any of our competitors’ higher interest loans at a special 18% interest rate and NO ADMIN FEE. This offer could save your clients thousands of dollars (while saving you a major headache) at settlement.

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BridgePoint offers law firm financing for fair compensation in litigation

AdvocateDaily.com | November 1, 2016 | Posted in Articles

When John Rossos co-founded BridgePoint Financial Services Inc. in 2005, he and his partner, Stephen Pauwels, set out to provide the kind of funding for law firms and their clients that would help them gain access to justice.

More than a decade later, BridgePoint is Canada’s largest funder of litigation, offering services to more than 1,000 law firms across the country through such products as working capital financing for law firms, settlement loans for personal injury clients, and financing for commercial and class action cases.

“We provide integrated risk-management solutions for law firms,” he tells AdvocateDaily.com.

“We specialize in understanding legal risks — we can take a look at any firm or any legal matter and offer a number of different services that enable lawyers and their clients to offset financial or indemnity risk. In doing so, we promote access to justice by ensuring that law firms and/or their clients have the resources to bring claims forward and get fair compensation.”

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BridgePoint offers funding alternatives for law firms

AdvocateDaily.com | October 6, 2016 | Posted in Articles

BridgePoint Financial Services Inc. provides disbursement financing to law firms to help lawyers grow their practices, fund expert reports required to validate their clients’ files and maximize compensation for their losses, says co-founder John Rossos.

“Traditional sources of financing, including banks which have fixed lending criteria, do not understand the business of personal injury law; and do not offer law firms a reliable source of operating capital,” he tells AdvocateDaily.com. "This puts considerable financial pressure on personal injury law firms.

“Unlike other lenders, BridgePoint understands the value of a law firms’ work in progress, and the correlation between disbursements invested today and fees realized tomorrow. The company has designed a variety of flexible disbursement financing alternatives to help law firms grow their practices with the judicious use of the firm’s own capital.”

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Seriously injured client makes rehab gains and returns to part-time work

Brian Ginsler, BridgePoint Financial Services | June 1, 2016 | Posted in Commentary

BridgePoint was approached by Findlay Law in Hamilton to obtain a treatment credit line to finance the ongoing costs of care of their client CC, who had suffered numerous fractures, brain injury and psychological trauma in a head-on MVC.

The SABS non-catastrophic funding was exhausted in the first year for both medical and rehabilitation benefits and attendant care, but the GCS and the length of time following injury did not permit a CAT application to be made at that time.

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Claimant firms must prepare for the long haul

Matthew Gwynne, SpectraLegal | May 31, 2016 | Posted in Articles

Understanding how litigation strategies affect cash flow will allow claimant firms to hold their nerve in the face of obstructive defendant tactics, advises Matthew Gwynne of UK-based SpectraLegal Finance.

Claimant clinical negligence lawyers will be all too aware of obstructive defendant tactics when it comes to attempting to reach a settlement. Even some NHS chief executives have spoken out about the tactics of their own lawyers.

These tactics can range from the infuriating to the ridiculous. Ignoring timelines stated in the established protocols, an issue that I understand both the Society of Clinical Injury Lawyers and Action against Medical Accidents are focusing on currently, is very common. Failure to settle strong cases at an early stage is another, with defendants letting claimants proceed to a full letter of claim in the knowledge that they will settle, admitting liability on the eve of a trial, and then querying all the avoidable costs involved.

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BridgePoint's European Affiliate to Lend Over £50M to Personal Injury Practices in the UK

SOLICITORS JOURNAL | February 16, 2016 | Posted in News Updates

A business created by Canada's top law firm financier has launched in England and Wales with plans to lend at least £50m to personal injury law firms during 2016.

SpectraLegal is the brainchild of BridgePoint Financial Group, a leading provider of litigation financing, which has supported more than 1,000 Canadian firms over the past 11 years.

Options for personal injury law firms in England and Wales to fund their practices have been in short supply in recent years amid caution from traditional lenders and the many reforms hitting the sector.

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No Retroactive Application of PJI rates for Ontario MVAs

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | September 25, 2015 | Posted in Commentary

We have written in a previous blog about Bill 171, which proposed several significant amendments that would affect injured parties. One of those amendments would set the pre-judgment interest rate (“PJI rate”) for non-pecuniary damages (damages for pain and suffering) which arose from bodily injury or death caused by a motor vehicle accident at the same rate as the PJI rate set out in the Courts of Justice Act (“CJA”). The result would be a significantly lower interest amount to the plaintiff in those situations. On January 1, 2015, the Insurance Act was amended to reflect this change. It does not appear that this amendment included a transition period. This raises the question as to whether the amendment would apply retroactively to files that are already before the Court.

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Update on Scarlett v. Belair

Bob LaBrecque, BridgePoint Financial Services | July 27, 2015 | Posted in Commentary

This is an update on the continuing saga of Scarlett v. Belair. We had previously written about this action in 2013 with respect to the Arbitrator’s and Director’s Delegate decisions. In 2013, the Arbitrator had narrowly interpreted the application of the Minor Injury Guidelines (“MIG”). By way of background, the MIG limits the medical/rehabilitation amount available to individuals injured in a motor vehicle accident to $3,500.00 unless they have a fracture, full thickness soft tissue tear, or are catastrophically impaired.

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$50,000 Court Penalty for Aviva in Threshold Related Decision

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Group | April 20, 2015 | Posted in Commentary

On December 12, 2014, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Barrie released its decision in Maxwell v. Luck, 2014 ONSC 7179 (CanLII). The endorsement dismissed the defendant’s threshold motion at trial and maintained the jury’s award of $108,000. This decision is significant for the Court’s review of the assessment on chronic pain conducted by the defendant’s expert. The action is also significant as the Court ordered a penalty against the defendant insurer for putting the plaintiff’s file in the threshold program.

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BridgePoint Covers $500,000 in Tar Ponds Cost Award

John Rossos, BridgePoint Financial Services | January 19, 2015 | Posted in News Updates

In March 2004, five residents of Sydney, Nova Scotia commenced a class action with respect to the contamination of their properties as a result of the operation of coke ovens and steel operations in the nearby Sydney Tar Ponds. Their properties were contaminated with highly toxic substances including, in certain instances, arsenic, lead, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polycylic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). The Governments of Nova Scotia and Canada were named as defendants for their role in the operation of the Sydney Tar Ponds and the resulting contamination.

The representative plaintiffs' class action law firms, Wagners and Siskinds LLP, contacted BridgePoint Global Litigation Services Inc. ("BridgePoint") on behalf of their clients to provide them with a $500,000 indemnity to help offset any order made against them to pay the defendants' costs. BridgePoint's indemnity allowed the representative plaintiffs to focus on advancing the action without worry that they could face potential financial ruin for agreeing to represent the class.

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MacKenzie v. Rogalasky: The Recovery of Interest for Litigation Financing is not a Dead Issue

John Rossos, BridgePoint Financial Group | November 21, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

On November 17, 2014, the British Columbia Court of Appeal rejected an appeal seeking the recovery of interest for a loan obtained by the claimant to pay for the cost of disbursements. The claimant borrowed money from a litigation financier to pay for the cost of their counsel’s disbursements and sought recovery of the interest. The B.C. Court of Appeal’s decision is the latest pronouncement on the issue concerning the recovery of financing costs in litigation and unfortunately contradicts a recent decision reached by the New Brunswick Court of Appeal in Leblanc v. Doucet, further adding to the growing number of conflicting decisions across Canada on this issue. Although it is tempting to say that the recovery of financing costs for loans used to finance disbursements incurred in litigation is a “dead issue”, there are very good reasons not to rush to this conclusion.

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BridgePoint presents at OTLA Board Meeting

Stephen Pauwels, BridgePoint Financial Services | November 17, 2014 | Posted in News Updates

BridgePoint Financial was recently invited by the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association (OTLA) Board of Directors to present and discuss its services at their most recent meeting on October 20, 2014 in Toronto. The purpose of the meeting was to assist OTLA in considering its position on the litigation lending industry in light of the BC Trial Lawyers Association’s decision to restrict litigation finance companies from marketing through their organization.

This blog post is taken from the presentation made by Stephen Pauwels, Principal of BridgePoint Financial.

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Changes to Insurance Act (Prince Edward Island)

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | September 24, 2014 | Posted in News Updates

Prince Edward Island enacted some changes to its Insurance Act which will affect motor vehicle accidents that occur on or after October 1, 2014 or motor vehicle insurance policies that are issued or renewed on or after October 1, 2014.

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Legal cost protection to change Canadian litigation

AdvocateDaily.com | September 3, 2014 | Posted in Articles

Irwin Mitchell, a leading U.K. law firm, has recently reported that it has been retained to act in a number of professional negligence actions against lawyers by commercial clients who were not advised about the availability of “after the event” insurance (also known as ATE insurance). ATE Insurance in the United Kingdom is similar to legal cost indemnities offered by our company, BridgePoint Indemnity Company (BICO) in Canada, that protects clients against adverse cost exposure in the event they are unsuccessful prosecuting their claims (plus the option to purchase protection for their counsel’s own costs or disbursements).

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Treatment Financing as a Strategic Tool for Leveraging an Advance from a Defendant

wtinjury.com | August 14, 2014 | Posted in Articles

David Wallin, a Director at Whitelaw Twining and Chair of the Plaintiff Bodily Injury Practice Group, dedicated to assisting clients with bodily injury claims, recently secured a significant advance payment from an insurer for rehabilitation expenses for a client using BridgePoint Financial Group's term sheet and treatment financing programme to strategically create exposure for the insurer for financing costs incurred as a direct result of denying his client's request for an advance.

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Insurer Ordered to Pay Interest on Litigation Loan until Trial

Stephen Pauwels, BridgePoint Financial Group | August 12, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

This decision is significant as it represents the first instance where interest on a litigation loan has been recovered from an insurer here in Ontario with the prospect of a full interest recovery pending the outcome of the trial(s).

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Interest on Litigation Loan Recovered from Defendant
in Supreme Court of Nova Scotia Decision

Stephen Pauwels, BridgePoint Financial Group | July 31, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

A recent Nova Scotia Costs Order represents the first time in that province that a defendant has been ordered to reimburse interest incurred by a plaintiff in full on litigation loans which were “necessary to continue the litigation”. Mr. Lowell Weir was one of a group of plaintiffs who were awarded in 2013 over $2 million in compensatory and $200,000 in punitive damages in a securities-related action against National Bank Financial which arose from the collapse of Halifax technology company, Knowledge House Inc. In order to afford the costs involved in the prolonged litigation, he borrowed approximately $100,000 through three separate litigation loans, incurring total interest costs in excess of $80,000.

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BICO Legal Cost Protection Successfully
Used to Defeat Security for Costs Application

John Rossos, BridgePoint Financial Services | July 24, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

Renée Vinett, a partner at Toronto personal injury law firm, Howie, Sacks & Henry, successfully used legal cost protection issued by BridgePoint Indemnity Company (“BICO”) to defeat an application seeking $180,000 as security for costs from her Ontario-resident client who suffered injuries in a horseback riding accident which took place in Alberta.

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BridgePoint offers financing to advance access to justice

AdvocateDaily.com | July 16, 2014 | Posted in Articles

BridgePoint Financial Services Inc. is the only company of its kind in Canada that offers a completely integrated service for law firms and their clients to ensure fair access to justice by providing unique financing solutions to support the specialized needs of plaintiffs, their lawyers and the experts who develop their legal claims, says co-founder John Rossos.

“We continually educate counsel and clients on various ways that we could share risks with them to make sure they can advance their claims and obtain fair compensation,” he tells AdvocateDaily.com.

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Precedent set in BC for Litigation Funding Agreements

John Rossos & Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Group | June 24, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

On May 28th, 2014, Justice Gropper of the British Columbia Supreme Court approved a Litigation Funding Agreement (“LFA”) in the class action Stanway v. Wyeth Canada Inc. This represents the first time a B.C. court has approved a third party financing agreement for class actions.

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Treatment Financing as a Strategic Tool for Leveraging an Advance from a Defendant Insurer

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | May 23, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

Sloan Mandel, a partner at Thomson Rogers, specializing in serious personal injury and medical malpractice claims, recently secured a significant advance payment from an insurer for rehabilitation expenses using BridgePoint’s term sheet and treatment financing programme to strategically create exposure for the insurer for financing costs incurred as a direct result of denying his client’s request for an advance.

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Proposed Changes coming to SABS disputes

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | March 18, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

On March 4, 2014, Bill 171 (An Act respecting insurance system reforms and repair and storage liens) had its first reading in the Ontario Legislature. The Bill proposes to move disputes pertaining to Statutory Accident Benefits ("SABS") from the Financial Services Commission of Ontario to the Licence Appeal Tribunal.

There are other changes that will be of interest to injured parties and their representatives if this Bill is enacted...

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Insurer's Limitation Defence Upheld

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | February 25, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

Lawyers should be aware of the Court of Appeal's recent decision to uphold the motion judge's finding that the appellant insured's right to claim Non-Earner Benefits was barred by a limitation period.

On November 11, 2005, Tanya Sietzema was involved in a car accident. She filed an application for benefits with the Economical Mutual Insurance Company ("Economical"). Economical provided Ms. Sietzema with its Explanation of Benefits Payable by Insurance Company ("OCF-9"), which allowed her to receive Income Replacement Benefits until March 2, 2006. The OCF-9 also indicated that she would not receive Non-Earner Benefits because she was employed at the time of the accident. At the bottom of the OCF-9, under the heading, "WARNING: TWO YEAR TIME LIMIT", Economical advised Ms. Sietzema that she had two years to dispute Economical's assessment of her claim.

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Significant changes to the MIG and benefits

Grace Tsang, BridgePoint Financial Services | February 10, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

On February 1, 2014, new amendments to the Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule ("SABS") came into force. These changes are of significant note and affect the Minor Injury Guidelines ("MIG"), attendant care and the election of certain benefits.

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FAIR submits paper to the Ontario Legislature outlining concerns regarding potential changes to SABS

Bob LaBrecque, BridgePoint Financial Services | January 28, 2014 | Posted in Commentary

On January 23rd 2014, the FAIR Association of Victims For Auto Insurance Reform ("FAIR") submitted a paper outlining their concerns to the Ontario Legislature as the Legislature prepares to contemplate changes to the current SABS.

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