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BridgePoint boosts access to justice

May 18, 2018

Litigation financing didn’t come naturally to Stephen Pauwels, co-founder and principal of BridgePoint Financial Services.

Coming at the idea from his perspective as a trained investment banker, it make no sense to him.

"For banks, litigation is a very foreign, risky scenario. It's completely incompatible with their lending criteria because there is no tangible security, and no ability to control the timing of that outcome," Pauwels explains. "They're simply not able to take on that kind of risk."

Indeed, he tells he would "never, in 100 years have stumbled on the idea of a litigation-based funding business" if it wasn't for his wife, Cathy Martin, who worked as a case manager at personal injury law firms. In that role, she helped accident victims navigate the practical challenges of making a full recovery while embroiled in a legal battle over an insurance payout.

“My wife often spent time dealing with clients’ eviction notices and other financial troubles that were preventing them from focusing on their recoveries, and she became very frustrated by the predicament people were being put in,” Pauwels says.

After taking his wife’s messages on board, he looked more deeply into how lenders could assist, and he ultimately began offering lawsuit loans as a side business to his corporate finance work.

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BridgePoint boosts access to justice