The Victorian Law Reform Commission's report Access to Justice: Litigation Funding and Group Proceedings was tabled in the Parliament of Victoria on 19 June 2018. The report contains 31 recommendations intended to ensure that people involved in class actions don’t face unfair risks and excessive costs.
The Commission recommended that the Supreme Court of Victoria’s powers to supervise class actions should be strengthened and clarified in legislation. It also recommended that the law in Victoria should be changed to allow lawyers to charge a percentage of the settlement (a 'contingency fee') in a successful class action, with the approval of the Supreme Court. This reform would enable more people to gain access to justice through class actions, as it would provide another avenue of funding for clients.
The Chair of the Victorian Law Reform Commission, The Hon. Philip Cummins AM, said: “The Commission proposes a pathway that should improve access to justice, provide appropriate regulation of litigation funders, maintain proper ethical conduct by lawyers, and not involve unfair burdens on litigants.” For a copy of the full report please click here.