Judge exposes, criticizes, & sanctions litigation funders in long running case vs. Cigna

27th Jul 2016

A group of third party litigation funders were hit with sanctions in a Cayman Islands lawsuit to enforce a 1990’s Liberian judgment against Cigna over allegations the company had insured properties of a Liberian company that had sustained damages during the first Liberian Civil War.

U.S. District Judge Paul Diamond of Philadelphia “explained the complex financing” behind the Cayman Islands lawsuit and admonished the litigation funders for “outrageous behavior (that) is an affront to the courts of the United States”, writes Reuters’ Alison Frankel.  Judge Diamond invited Cigna to propose monetary damages against the three individuals “with a stake in the Liberian judgment”.

Outside counsel representing Cigna, Donald Hawthorne of Axinn Veltrop said, “The contempt judgment and, we hope, award of compensatory damages should send a message to litigation funders, whether in the U.S. or abroad, that they are not above the law and will be held accountable. Funders cannot hide behind the scrim of anonymity”.

Justice not Profit previously reported on this case in February 2016.