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Lawsuit Financing: What You Need to Know Before You Borrow

Scales of Justice, WikiCommons

Scales of Justice, WikiCommons

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Mesh News Desk editor, Jane Akre interviewed Mark Bello of Lawsuit Financial Corp of Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Mr. Bello provides MND readers with some solid information they need to understand before reaching out to seek funding to make ends meet in advance of a expected lawsuit settlement. Yes, funding in advance of a settlement is risky business, but with information comes empowerment. 

There are many misconceptions about the field of lawsuit funding. Hopefully, this interview will shed some light on the issue. 

Mark M. Bello 877-377-SUIT (7848)

Lawsuit Financial Corp. LLC

Farmington Hills, Michigan

http://www.lawsuitfinancial.com/about-us.html

Akre Q: Let’s talk about the 800 pound gorilla in the room.   Some lawsuit “lending” companies are often accused of being “predatory.”  Why is that?  What makes you different?

“There are many different ways to define “different”.  My first comment is to quarrel with the use of the term “lending” in conjunction with a lawsuit funding transaction.   This is a misnomer because lawsuit funding transactions are not “loans”.  A  “loan” requires an “absolute obligation to repay” in almost every jurisdiction in America.  With lawsuit funding, there is no absolute obligation to repay; the funding is excused if the lawsuit is unsuccessful.  There is no hard collateral, just a lien on a case that may or may not be successful.  Many lawsuit funding companies differ In terms of policies and rates and lawsuit funding can certainly be expensive because of the extraordinary risk being taken.  When a funder’s capital is at risk in a pending lawsuit, it should not be a surprise to anyone that these transactions trend on the expensive side.”

Q: When you hear that term ‘predatory lending’ does it make you cringe?

“I confess that I am a little tired hearing it all the time. The use of that term exhibits a lack of understanding of what lawsuit funding companies do.  A “predatory lender” charges excessive interest rates even when it receives hard collateral in return for the loan.  A person who has spotty credit may apply for a credit card, a car loan or a mortgage.  His bank accounts can be subject to lien, his wages garnished; his car or home can be repossessed.  So, why charge excessive interest?  The lender has solid, proven ways of assuring its principal and profit return.

Lawsuit funding companies must, for repayment, by contract, look only to the cases they have funded.  All other assets of the person seeking the funding are irrelevant.  A person can have significant assets but be cash poor and the lawsuit funding company can’t touch a single asset.   Companies like mine lien cases and only cases.  If a case is successful, our principal and profit is paid; if the case is unsuccessful, we lose our money.  Not only are we not “predatory”, we are not “lenders”.  What we do does not fit the commonly understood, legal definition of a “loan”.   That we charge high rates for the risks we take does not make us “predatory”.  We must offset losses with the profit we make on wins.  And, there is much uncertainty; we get involved in cases that are handled by lawyers we hardly know, and for clients we have never met.  If the case fails, we forgive it all. It should shock NO ONE that a transaction with this much risk can be expensive.  Lawsuit funding, in general, trends on the expensive side; the client should be made aware of that going into the transaction.  I am a full disclosure kind of guy.”

Q: Do you recommend that clients seek lawsuit funding in smaller increments, and only in certain circumstances?steth 185

“Absolutely.  It’s certainly wise to err on the side of smaller versus larger and, with my company, a plaintiff is not limited to just one advance.   If a client needs $10,000 because her lawyer has advised that settlement is 10 months away and the client is short of making ends meet by approximately  $1,000 a month, that client is far better off seeking $1,000 a month then $10,000 all at once.   There are two very important reasons this is true:  1. Profits in lawsuit funding transaction accumulate over time.  Thus, advances occurring closer to settlement time will be cheaper than those provided earlier.  2.  Just because the lawyer predicts that the case will take 10 months to resolve doesn’t mean that his prediction will be accurate.  If the case settles in six months, the client didn’t need the rest saving the client a lot of money.  Some companies don’t tell people that.

I would encourage people to ask the lawsuit funding company whether or not they can apply for more than one funding.  Since profits are charged based on amounts advanced and the length of time the money is outstanding, it is common sense to seek multiple advances at smaller levels rather than one large advance.   People seeking lawsuit funding should have serious needs, to save their house, save their car, pay tuition, feed their family, keep their lights and heat on.   Funding should be used for important reasons; gifts or trips can wait until after the lawsuit is resolved.  Lawsuit Financial operates that way; however, my sense is that many companies don’t ask the client why he/she is seeking funding and many companies don’t assess “need” rather than “greed”.  I try to provide less rather than more and only fund in situations where the need is serious. My sense is that many lawsuit funding companies don’t operate that way.”

If we had a crystal ball and knew that a case would fail, paying off a credit card utilizing lawsuit funding would be a good thing.  However, if the case is successful, the cost of lawsuit funding could (and in most cases will) exceed the cost of credit card debt.  Thus, in the usual situation, it makes little sense to pay off a credit card.  What DOES make sense is to use lawsuit funding to avoid falling behind on payments due, thus damaging your credit reputation.  Bad credit can cause years of financial difficulty.   Clients should be advised not to pay off car loans with lawsuit funding proceeds; use funding only to keep payments current.”

Q: Is it possible for the client to owe twice the amount advanced? 

“Yes; and sometimes, even more than that.  Lawsuit funding is a bet; if we lose the bet, we lose our money.  If we win the bet, to stay in business, we must profit to an extent that pays off the bets we lose.  Or, a consumer can look at it as an investment.  Some investments are successful and some aren’t; if we pool our investments, we hope that the successful ones outpace and offset the unsuccessful ones.  Otherwise, we are not profitable.  The same is true with the speculative investing in or betting on the outcome of lawsuits.  And, don’t forget, between success and failure in lawsuits, there is compromise.”

dollar sign, WikiCommons

dollar sign, WikiCommons

Q: What do you mean by compromise?

“Compromise should occur when a lawsuit is successful, but not successful enough to pay the client his/her share of the recovery, the lawyer’s fees and advanced costs, and the principal and profit due a lawsuit funding company.  Lawsuit Financial has an industry exclusive compromise provision in our contracts with our clients.  If principal and profit exhaust plaintiffs’ recovery, we will compromise our returns.  For instance, if a client owes $10,000 in principal and profit, and the net recovery to plaintiff is $10,000 after attorney fees and costs, we will provide a discount, so the client will walk away, not only with the money we provided to her earlier in the life of the case, but also with additional case revenue.  Many companies will take the client’s entire recovery in situations like this.  In their view, a contract is a contract.  The client owes $10,000; there is enough money to pay funding and profit in full.  We are entitled to the entire net case proceeds.  At Lawsuit Financial, we don’t think that’s an appropriate result; the client is the one who has lived with serious injuries and had to fight with insurance companies in court, not us.  Thus, we will provide a resolution appropriate compromise.   As you can see, we take real risk in funding these transactions.  Successes must offset failures and compromises.

Mesh cases and other multi-district, class action type litigation are excellent examples of the risks taken in providing litigation funding.  Multi-district litigation has tremendous uncertainty both in time and outcome; thus, these transactions must trend on the expensive side.   It could take three to four successes (both in time and money) to offset a single large loss or a protracted litigation length in a Mesh case.  Somehow, losses and large time lapses have to be offset by successes.  In the consumer money business, only a lawsuit funding portfolio operates that way.   Remember, with a car loan or mortgage, the lender can repossess or foreclose if the borrower defaults; the lender, upon repossession, owns the asset and can sell it to satisfy the obligation.  Only the plaintiff can own his lawsuit; a stranger cannot appear on his/her behalf or take it over.  A lawsuit funding company cannot “own” or “repossess” the plaintiff’s case; we don’t get the kind of collateral a lender does.  That’s what distinguishes lawsuit funding from lending.  We advance money on speculative lawsuits and forgive the obligation if the case fails; there is no assurance that the obligation will ever be repaid.”

Q: Do you ever walk away with more than the client?

“I can’t speak for other funding companies, however, no; that is a result that can never happen with Lawsuit Financial.  Between the amount that we advanced and compromises at the end when necessary, Lawsuit Financial would never participate in a result where our company walked away with more than the client walked away with.”

Q: What does a client need to ask before receiving an advance?  

  • Is your funding principal and profit contingent upon case outcome (is the advance excused if the case fails?)?
  • What is the minimum profit charge and what is the maximum (if any)? (If the company refuses to cap the profits, run-as fast as you can-the other way!)
  • Do you charge fees of any kind over and above profit and do you add these fees to the amount of the funding advance and charge interest on them? (If the answer is “yes”, run-as fast as you can-the other way!)

“Many companies ‘fee up’ (or “junk fee”) their contracts.  They charge a host of fees:  underwriting fees, shipping fees, application fees, wire fees, transaction fees, etc.  Then, they roll these fees into your contract and the amount the client “received” in funding includes all of these fees.  As profit begins to accumulate on the advance, it is also accumulating on these fees.  Many companies won’t tell clients about these fees and how they increase the cost of funding on a monthly basis.  A $1,000 contract could have between $500 and $750 in fees added to the funding amount.  The effect of this is that the client has contracted for funding in the amount of $1,500 or $1,750 rather than the $1,000 actually paid to the client as “funding”.  At Lawsuit Financial, we don’t apologize for the profit we charge, but we disclose it, verbally and in bold print on the front and third page (schedule) of our contract.  We charge no junk fees (or fees of any kind).  A telephone conversation with a client never terminates without the client understanding exactly what funding costs over the various stages of litigation and without getting our recommendation about funding strategies.

My professional staff is required to ask a client:

  • What do you need the money for?

“Many companies don’t care why the client seeks funding.  At Lawsuit Financial, we think that does a disservice to the client.  If he/she is calling with a valuable case, likely to resolve successfully, seeking funding that trends expensive, a discussion of why the client needs the money  (“need”, not “desire”) is an important conversation to have.

The client should also ask:

  • If I don’t have the result expected and I owe you a lot of money will you guarantee a compromise?

I would be curious to see how others in this industry answer this question.  Lawsuit Financial has a guaranteed compromise provision written in our contract.  I believe that we are the only company in North America that offers, in writing, a compromise in a situation that warrants compromise.  Lawsuit Financial is attorney-owned and operated.  Many lawsuit funding companies are owned and operated by financial gurus.  Ask the financial guy:  “Does it bother you that your profit is being made but the client is getting nothing”?  Many will say “no; the client took the same risk we took and we won.”  Lawsuit Financial says that if the result was disappointing and the lawyer and the client are in financial pain at the end of the case, we should share the pain.  That is the true definition of shared risk.”

Q: What type of lawsuit funding strategies should apply to Mesh cases?

“Well, Jane, you have indicated that Mesh cases have a potential value of $40,000 on the lower side of the ledger and up to $450,000 or so for the more serious cases, before legal fees are paid.  Assuming those figures to be true, a client should look at funding, over time, in an aggregate amount that is less than $5,000.00.   Funding should fit comfortably into potential case value so as not to over-burden the case.  If funding profits double or even triple the advance provided, the amount due will be no more than 1/3 the settled value of the case. Err on the side of smaller is better.  For a case in the $450,000 category, advances should be kept to levels around $25,000 to $30,000 over time.  Again, all participants should desire that funding and profits be kept at levels lower than or equal to 1/3 of case value.   Seek funding only in “absolute need” situations.  By the way, one way to be “predatory” in the lawsuit funding business is to fund too much on the case.  Funders should remember who is the seriously injured victim in these cases.  Who has pained and suffered?  Who has been waiting years for justice?  Even though it is easy to put oneself in this position, a funder should not want own more than 1/3 of a client’s case proceeds.  “Predatory” in the lawsuit funding business would apply more to over-advancing than it would to amounts of profit companies charge for risks they take in speculative litigation.  Why would a company that could have easily avoided doing so want to own an amount of plaintiff’s lawsuit proceeds that exceeds the amount that the plaintiff herself will receive?”  #

46 Comments

  1. Hal Lewis says:

    Very informative!

    I have one question for Mr. Bello that could come into play here:

    What would happen if a client owed your company $40,000 and was offered $400,000 to settle… but the client refused to settle because they wanted to litigate their case and try to get a bigger verdict?

    In other words, an offer was made that would allow your company to be repaid in full… but the client didn’t want to take it (perhaps a wise decision, perhaps a foolish one).

    Does your company have any say in the matter of settlement vs. rejection? Or is your company content to be completely at the mercy of whatever decision the client makes?

    • Barb says:

      Hal I take your expertise comments seriously. For us waiting for these MDL to settle i have AMS, do you not feel this is a good idea for those in financial distress??

    • Mark Bello says:

      To Hal Lewis: Lawsuit Financial has an absolute “hands off” policy regarding the litigation it provides funding against. The case belongs to the CLIENT. As such, whether he/she is making a smart decision or a stupid one, we do not interfere, even it it puts our money at risk. Sometimes, we are asked our opinion about a situation; I have been a practicing lawyer and a litigation funding professional for a combined 38 years. I am not a novice. If I am asked my opinion, I will give it. However, any and all decision regarding offers, settlement and/or trial belong to the client with counsel from the handling attorney. Regards, Mark

  2. Traci Rizzo says:

    Jane , Jane jane LOL !!! Well I’ll give you props for trying !! You call yourself a journalist ? An advocate of mesh victims ? Or am I wrong on both counts ? I call people like you a squirrel looking for a nut lol. You were given privilege in a closed site and capitalized in it. I must ask what was the point of this article ?? For you to educate us or to protect others !! We are injured not dumb !! I’m aware of everything stated here. I’ll help I lighten you on what your missing soon enough ! I wonder if your willing to be interviewed ? Buyer beware !! Definitely be aware of the lending practices but maybe get your info from other sources that don’t have an agenda !!

    • Jane Akre says:

      Can you read Traci? Did you learn anything? Please do not fault others who want to empower themselves with knowledge. I suggest you refrain from visiting this website if you find it so offensive. Goodbye!

    • Mary Pat says:

      Traci – how DARE you insult Jane Akre! You are dumber than you think! You come to this site and say cruel, insulting words to the woman who is literally our heroine????????? The one an only journalist who actually cares and gives a whole-hearted effort to help the mesh inured? Where did you ever get the idea that you weren’t dumb? You are dumber than dumb! I imagine you will receive an avalanche of comments like mine. Leave Jane alone, you dumb bully! Go away!

    • Bejah says:

      Ms Rizzo, No doubt there are many in this community who do not know much if anything about settlements or anything else they are having to contend with now. I am one of those people. Although I have tried to inform myself I always appreciate Jane’s efforts to provide information for us and perhaps another view of these subjects. What I find no value in is your comment and I find myself wondering (1) Who you are, and (2) What your motivation is. Jane has the ability to ban you from her site and given your conduct I would wholy support that as I expect would many others.

      Bejah

    • Ronald James says:

      Traci, Jane is right in bringing this information to everyone. You need to sit down and let people read and make their own choices with the information given,

  3. Good article Jane. Desperate times sometimes call for desperate actions, and knowledge about options and the consequences is vital in making informed decisions. It appears if you are in line to get a $40,000. settlement less lawyer fees etc you should not look for lawsuit funding for surgery costs…..as it appears one should not ask for more than $4000.00 which does not cover the cost of mesh removal. It might cover travel costs to a mesh removal specialists. If your medical insurance plan will pay for surgery but not travel this might assist women to getting help sooner than later. Also I like that your source recommends “borrowing” as little as needed,as needed to reduce the payback interest charges.

    Thank you for your constant high standard of coverage of the mesh issues.

    • Jane Akre says:

      You are welcome Noni… I thought he had some good points people needed to hear. It is truly not a bad/good simple story as has been characterized by some.

      • Barb says:

        Jane thank you for this information!! Desperate measures, behind on car payments, being able to eat paying your car insurance are issues many of us are facing I just filled out an application to see what they say,,,,yes under $5, 000. I have been quite frustrated this week with attorney’s information. I never get the same answere. If our cases are being put into categories and some letter’s have all ready been sent to some woman concerning their injuries to settle their cases with AMS why is it the people I speak with cannot tell me the different type’s of categories we are being put in and what these so called point systems mean as far as money. I was told there will be no $1 million lawsuits handed out, so I questioned exactly what this other attorney firm’s goal is to there client, well they have much empathy and trust in them that they will get you the nest settlement based on surgeries, pain, suffering, all injuries pertaining to the mesh!! I asked well wonder if we as I do have Doctorial documentation that states due to all your injuries the fact you (ME) should start thinking about is you will never be %100 percent…………….how does one put a figure on that when documented by a Doctor!!!

    • Mark Bello says:

      Nonie: You may be correct about the cost of surgery. If you have a potential $40,000 case, unless the cost of surgery is less than $4,000, funding would not be a good idea. Lawsuit Financial offers a free “Client Resource Center” which is the brainchild of my daughter Jennifer. As an added service to our clients or our callers, she finds all sorts of free stuff from non-profits for clients who don’t qualify for what they need from our company. Give Jennifer a call at 877-377-7848 and see if there is some sort of surgical assistance program. Don’t know if there is one, but it is worth a shot. Regards, Mark

  4. justme says:

    Jane,

    Brush it off..You are doing the right thing. The end..

  5. msm says:

    Thank you so much, Jane. I had considered this but wasn’t sure what strategy is best. I like that he suggested we ask for a minimal amount and just to cover necessities and keep a roof over our heads. Also, he suggests that we take it in small increments which means he’s not making as much profit. Plus, he makes sure that the client leaves with something which is not the norm. It all makes sense. Anybody who believes all funding is predatory and can’t see the risk/profit connection isn’t the brightest bulb in box.

    • Mark Bello says:

      MSM: My company provides free consultations by phone. Fee free to call to discuss “strategy”. We are happy to help and also happy to advise that we are not a good fit when we are not. Regards, Mark

  6. Andagain says:

    I am glad you covered this, I actually contacted one of these companies when I was about to lose my car , the last thing I had to my name. And they were honest and did tell me the fees and I chose not to use them and borrowed from family and sold property my ex and I had owned for 25 years. But I think they have their purpose not everyone has someone that can help them.

    • Mark Bello says:

      Andagain: Clients should ALWAYS use alternatives to lawsuit funding. They will, almost always, be less expensive. One word of warning, however: If you lose your case and you have borrowed from friends and/or family, you will have to repay the loan, regardless of the fact that the money you counted on didn’t materialize. With lawsuit funding you don’t. It is still a good idea, especially if you are reasonably certain you are going to get an award, to at least try to find cheaper money. Regards, Mark

  7. Just tired says:

    So Jane…I am sure your aware of the company that goes by IVAF….they claim to be a non proffit organization. Can you tell me what you know of them? Are they a good company to use?

  8. Just tired says:

    Jane- no sure myself something victims advocate something…was hoping to find out if I should use them…

  9. Bejah says:

    I guess they charge upwards of 40% so that is pretty sobering. But at least it is something if you are facing losing your home and have exhausted all other options.I am tempted too becuause I have to have an emergency root canal (from the toxins leeching from the mesh? Sending the material to a special lab for analysis. I have dental insurance but still the co-pay for the root canal is about $200 and the rest of it…the cap, etc. is another $600 just for the co-pays. I have never had a root canal, and hardly any cavaties until now. I am going to try CARE CREDIT.

    Bejah

    • Bejah B says:

      I called Mark’s company. The young woman I spoke with was very pleasant but she did say, if my memory serves me well, that they had not yet decided if they were going to fund mesh cases. Please confirm this and consider it hearsay for now. I did submit an application for $1,000 to cover my emergency root canal and related dental work. When I have received a reply I will let ya’all know of any information that may be helpful to you.

      BTW my lawfirm does not like the idea of my seeking funding from sources where the cost is so high.

      In this particular situation I face terrible physical consequences that will be lifelong (Not that I think I am going to be alive much longer…as the mesh eats away at my body).

      Many of you have to wait for settlement dollars to have explant surgery and the great tragedy is that the longer one waits the less likely you will be a candidate for the surgery because the mesh becomes imbedded and the formation of scar tissue make surgery prohibitive with each year that passes, at least that is my understanding. The fact that in the face of this these corporate defendants drag this out is something I can not wrap my mind around. I will use the word again: It is evil.

      For me the money is less important by far than having dental work done that I need. For corporations like Johnson & Johnson there will never be a point at which they are making enough money, where their profit margin is sufficiently high enough, never a time when they will be rich enough. That must be a kind of HELL. And they hire people who are very motivated by money…the root of all evil.

      I will not settle for some meaningless amount. I am prepared to go to trial and bring in a dozen expert witnesses and the defendant can play their little game of appeal but in the end they will lose and my Trustee will have the funding to support anti mesh efforts after I am gone, establish a foundation to fund othr worthy causes and help those that have been harmed by JNJ, Monsanto and their like.

      BTW I have stopped drinking milk that is not organic and I now also drink Almond milk. Monsanto is one of the most evil corporations on the face of the earth.

      I expect we need to limit the size of corporations and we need to have more government oversight of their activities. We need to stop the funding of political campaigns by foreign governments and better manage campaign finance in this country. Until we do these things nothing will change.

      BTW did you all notice that, remembering the Linda Gross trial, she had about six expert witnesses. I do not remember reading about other trials where expert witnesses were brought in with the exception of the European researcher and perhaps a couple of others. This makes me wonder how is it decided if there will be expert witnesses, how they will be compensated and so on. Does anyone know anything about this? In the trials that have been lost by the defendants were there expert witnesses? I do not recall.

      Best wishes to all,

      Bejah

      • Mark Bello says:

        Bejah: You misunderstood the information. We ARE funding Mesh cases. There are several MDL cases that we are not ready to commit to yet (not enough information about liability, damages levels, and potential length of time to conclusion of litigation), but Mesh is NOT one of those. Having said that, Mesh and other MDL cases are difficult to fund because we get different answers from every lawyer we talk to about things like: 1. Which attorney will control the settlement proceeds when they are distributed? (The attorney who controls the distribution process is the attorney we need to complete the transaction with). 2. What is the case of the person who is applying for funding valued at for settlement? (Attorneys are giving us “ranges” of settlement possibilities, rather than evaluating individual situations). 3. How long will the case of the person applying take to resolve or go to trial? (We are getting many different answers to this based on geographic location, date of filing, type of device, manufacturer, etc. Thus, it is “difficult” to get cases funded, but we are doing them.

        Your second point plays off the first one. I just described why it is difficult to complete these transactions in the litigation investment community. There is uncertainty as to who, exactly, will be handling funds distribution. There is uncertainty as to case values. There are different manufacturers suggesting different case resolution strategies; they are not on the same page. Some are looking to settle, some are declaring litigation war. There is uncertainty as to when these cases will resolve. Months? Years? Since our funding is capped, the length of time becomes important. And, as I mentioned in the interview, if the result is not for an amount that was expected, depending on ratios of funding due to settlement amount achieved, we will compromise the amount due. For all of these reasons, this type of funding is expensive.

        Try this: Walk into a bank, tell them you wish to borrow against the expected proceeds of your case. You don’t know whether it will be successful. If it is successful, you don’t know how much you are going to receive. If it is successful, you don’t know how long you are going to have to wait for the case to resolve so that you can get your money. Tell the banker that you are not willing to put up any additional collateral, no house, no car, no valuable asset as collateral, you just want to use your case. Then, tell them that you want the interest that they charge capped, because you don’t know when the case will settle and you don’t want the interest to grow for years and years without certainty. As you might guess, that loan will be denied before it is even processed.

        We provide Llitigation funding for people we don’t know, with lawyers we don’t know, on cases that have no control over, based upon 5-10 pages of information and a couple of completed forms. We don’t know how the litigation will turn out and we don’t know when it will all be over. And, if you lose the case, you owe us nothing. The fee structure you outline Is an attempt to take good case results and set them against bad results (losses and serious compromises), with, hopefully, a profit being earned when the dust settles. It is not a business for the feint of heart. Knowing all of this, it any wonder that lawsuit funding is expensive? Hopefully, this help to illuminate the approval policy and the fee structure. Regards, Mark

        • Jane Akre says:

          Thank you for the clarification Mark… much appreciated!

        • Bejah B says:

          Thank you Mark, I appreciate your thoughtful and thorough reply. Honestly, the young lady who answered your phone did say she was not sure if you would be funding mesh cases so you might want to bring that up at next staff mtg. Your staff has been very communicative with me. My law firm has yet to respond to you or to me. Because they told me to wait a week or so I wonder if they are trying to extract a worthy settlement out of JnJ/Ethicon, Maybe just wishful thinking. I really do not think they would forget about me and it is embarrassing to call. So I continue to wait, for now.

          I agree, there are so many variables in this matter it is a true nightmare for us all and I believe I speak for our community when I thank you very much for your willingness to negotiate these difficult waters.

          Bejah

  10. Bejah says:

    Has anyone contacted this company? I am going to call them I think. Any comments on the experience of others will be very much appreciated. I will do the same. I am going to check with the BAR in his state to see what his record says first.

    Bejah

    • Barb says:

      I contacted them Bejah! I got a call, unfortunately missed it will call tomorrow………….

      • Bejah B says:

        Hi Barb, I hope it went well for you. I talked with them this morning. They sent a request for approval from the law firm representing me last week. They are still waiting for a response.

        As a courtesy you might want to send a heads up email to your counsel and let them know of your need which should be fairly critical. Unless your law firm approves the advance (Is that what we should call it) I think you (and I) are out of luck. My law firm does not feel comfortable having their clients pay such high fees for an advance and does not generally approve, just FYI. I understand that but I do not want to lose my teeth, I have lost so much already. My teeth have almost become symbolic for me of my ability to survive all of this.

        Thanks for sharing. I hope we can continue as we get news of the status of our reqests.

        Also, to digress….PLEASE anyone who has had dental damage since implant please let us know so we can determine if their is a pattern. This will help our case(s), especially those who have serious dental damage. And everyone, please be forwarned…take extra good care of your teeth. My dentist told me (Forgive me if I am repeating myself) if we drink sugary drinks to wash out our mouths with water after to get the sugar off of our teeth. Do not sip a soda all day, that is repeatedly coating your teeth with sugar and will cause serious damage over time. The other thing they told me is, when you brush your teeth in the evening leave the toothpaste on your teeth all night, do not rinse it off. It will have a protective effect. In addition to brushing, I now pour a little hydrogen peroxide on my brush and then dip it in a mix of salt and baking soda (I do 50/50) and brush with that also. Flossing has always been so hard for me, I even keep it in the desk drawer in the study, in the bedside chest and in the drawer of the coffee table in the living room and still I forget half the time. Also it catches and breaks off. Now I have learned not to try to pull it up and out but pull it through and that is much better. This is so important. Remember it is pretty close to your brain also! Take care people.

        Bejah

  11. Angiered says:

    My husband had been fighting for his life for almost a year until we found a doctor who actually said the mesh has got to come out and he did mesh removal surgery two weeks ago! We just got home from his follow up with the doctor and he gave us the surgical report and yes it was the mesh that was causing all of my husband’s health issues but our problem is finding a attorney in Kentucky who will take his cause( and we know we have a medical malpractice case on 7 doctors) if anyone can help us with someone who would take his case please let us know!

    • Jane Akre says:

      Contact Bruce Rosenberg 954-701-5094. He has The Meshoma Foundations and knows all about hernia mesh medical and litigation.

    • Bejah B says:

      Search GOOGLE for “Best attorneys in Kentucky” or if that does not work search for “Best attorneys in America” and see if you can find one in Kentucky that handles mass torts. If not call them anyway, ask to talk to a paralegal and ask if they can recommend counsel in the state that handles such matters. The other thing is, I am not sure it matters what state your attorney is in. I live in CA and my law firm is in New York City. The important thing is getting the best attorney you can because the one with the best counsel usually wins.

      Wishing you good luck,

      Bejah

  12. jbroken says:

    If no more payouts of million explain to me how all these other got huge settlements. What about women suffer with no ones help suffered 10-15 yard an now need surgery cause the Dr. Is opening up an saying we got to have surgery asap. What’s fair here.

    • Barb says:

      JBROKEN I feel the same as you!! The only ones getting big settlements although most are under appeal are the ones able to go to court!! And it seem those of us who seem to be the most injured and I’m not saying you all arent we will be the ones with the highest insurance pay back!! UNFAIR in so many ways.

      • Bejah B says:

        Ladies, Remember that we do not know the dollar amounts of settlements. They are probably, at least in part, based on some variation of the degree of injury data developed for the matter at hand, in our case transvaginal mesh damage. It seems likely that the manufactuers would wish to settle what have been called “high value” cases privately and we do not know what those cases settle for. It may be more than you think. These cases do not go to trial. It is fair that where there is the greatest injury a higher dollar amount is appropriate. One of the problems with this plan is that we do not know if those not showing symptoms will develop them later and this possibility is very troubling. It is my personal opinion that the person who falls into this category (Category I) should be compensated assuming it is highly probable that they will develop symptoms at some point. Their compensation might be graduated and depend on future symptom development. Try to be calm and patient. Live your lives, do not focus too much on this, so much that your life slips away while you are obsessed with this terrible situation. Let your attorney do his or her job and know that it will take time. You know the saying, “It is what it is?”. Keep that in mind. Worry is not good for you and it will not change much. This does not mean you should not stay informed. Maintain a balance. Take care,

        Bejah

  13. Barb says:

    Mr. Bello, we appreciate your help and sorry that I put you in that situation. I never heard anything from my attorney’s so I assume because these MDL”S have been massive and my company is settling slowly but progress they feel not a good idea at this present time. Thank You!

  14. Bejah B says:

    PLEASE NOTE

    Dear people, please remember two important things when considering this:

    (1) Always be completely truthful with your attorney first of all. The firm representing you will review your case to make sure it meets the criteria the case demands, fits neatly into the parameters defined by the filing. Your attorney will not be able to justify or approve your appeal for a settlement advance if your case can not do this.

    (2) These suits against the defendant medical device manufacturers demand that ONLY vaginal implant of mesh will be considered. Suit(s) with wider parameters are certain to follow as the truths are uncovered about what the defendants have done so don’t lose faith.

    (3) Prepare a brief essay (1-2 pages) just in case you are asked to do so, for the settlement funding organization, stating how these funds will help you. Be sincere. Be long winded if you wish but before stamping your draft “Final” cut half of what you wrote.

    (4) Make absolutely certain that you understand the math. So do NOT focus on the money, focus on what it is costing you and make sure you can accept that.

    Best wishes to all,

    Bejah

  15. sickandtired says:

    Has anyone had any luck with funding ? I have not. I’m beginning to wonder if it has to do with the fact that Johnson and Johnson is my defendant. The fact that they are planning to hold out the longest.

  16. Justice says:

    Jane, the firm representing our case against J&J & Ethicon LLC. has informed us that a settlement offer should come anytime now. However, she said it could be a few months before its all said and done. So, we are considering an advance to pay our monthly bills until our case is settled. Do you personally recommend this company? Has anyone had a successful transaction with them? Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    • Jane Akre says:

      I hesitate to recommend anyone but I know Mark Bellow and he is an honest guy and will tell you straight. I think that’s the best you can ask for. AND he will cut his losses if you have a reduced settlement, most won’t do that. Nothing in it for me, I just like straightforward folks.

      • Justice says:

        Thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to respond. I have sent you a message to your FB as I believe we are in the same city and had a question to ask you. Thanks again.

        • Mark Bello says:

          Repayment should not be anywhere near the numbers you are suggesting. If someone quoted similar terms they are ripping you off. These cases are difficult to fund because it is hard to pin down which attorney controls the influx of money and what the time frames are for recovery. We have gotten a few approved and as we get closer to the promised land we can do a lot more. Hope this helps. Feel free to call me at 877-377-SUIT

  17. Numbers Guy says:

    This may be a question better suited for the settlement funding company, but any feedback would be appreciated. Hypothetically speaking if I only needed 5k to 10k total to address some necessary living expenses and my final settlement is $1.5 million, am I correct to think the settlement company could receive approximately 30% of the entire settlement or $450,000 on a $5k advance? If so, I can’t imagine how this would be a viable option for me or anybody for that matter. How could anybody think a 9,000% payback on advanced funds be justified?

    • Jane Akre says:

      Don’t think anyone would. Thats why you need to have a discussion on what the max would be. Thats why you need to be able to trust the person providing the loan. Get it in writing……

    • Jane Akre says:

      Send Mark the contract in writing , he would be interested in reading it….I think it’s been misunderstood.

  18. Justice says:

    Hi Jane, Could you please contact me? I sent my contact info. Thank you

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