We’re thrilled to announce our investment in SettleIndex, a company that provides financial modeling software tailored for dispute resolution.
The large majority of legal disputes settle out of court, but settlement decisions are oftentimes more art than science today. Lawyers tend to rely on previous experience when it comes to settlements and depending on the stakes of the litigation, it can be hard for clients to think about settlement objectively. Each day that a case goes on, costs for both sides increase. At a certain point, settling may be more lucrative than continuing legal fees and trial preparation, but it can be very difficult to know what that point is without proper analysis. In many jurisdictions, lawyers also have a regulatory or ethical obligation to explore the possibility of settlement with clients, help develop reasonable expectations, and enable them to make better-informed decisions about the course of the dispute.
Risk analysis is a vital part of any litigation, but the process can be challenging. Financial outcomes of litigation can be influenced by a multitude of factors - everything from case-specific considerations such as damages, costs, contingent fees, litigation financing, and enforcement issues to external factors such as opponent behavior, court decisions, and jurisdiction-specific regulations. Financial modeling tools designed specifically for the legal vertical are virtually non-existent, so lawyers tend to use their own methods or avoid it altogether. This can lead to increased financial risk for clients, increased risk of claims from clients for lawyers, or increased scrutiny from regulators when cases don’t go as planned.
The SettleIndex team created a solution that accounts for this complexity. The platform allows lawyers to build visual case maps and decision trees underpinned by detailed financial models, helping litigators model scenarios and analyze the risk of a case. This enables them to present advice visually, be confident in the financial analysis, set and manage client expectations, and have a clear view of what a case is worth when heading into negotiations. Ultimately, this improves litigation outcomes, whether that means getting a better deal, saving costs for clients, or increasing lawyer efficiency and revenue from alternative fee structures.
At the end of the day, litigation involves real people and companies with real problems. SettleIndex wants to improve litigation outcomes for claimants, defendants, and lawyers, while optimizing the process to ensure the law works better for everyone. This mission resonates with The LegalTech Fund’s focus on investing in companies that transform the world of law. We believe Robert Hogarth, Zac Best, and Charles Szilagyi are the perfect team to solve this problem, combining Robert’s forty years of litigation experience with Zac’s product background and Charles’ extensive software development experience. We’ve enjoyed getting to know them and have been really impressed with their drive and vision.
We are thrilled to welcome the SettleIndex team to The LegalTech Fund family and let us know if we can connect you to learn more.