Escalate, the multi-award winning law firm, has joined forces with Jonathon Bray Legal Services to provide law firms with an innovative alternative to setting up their own commercial litigation departments.
As part of this pioneering initiative, Escalate and Jonathon Bray will embed teams of specialists within law firms, effectively becoming their in-house commercial dispute resolution departments. The teams will utilise the groundbreaking Escalate process, which has won multiple awards and is transforming how SMEs are managing their commercial disputes. They will go to market using both the law firm’s name and the Escalate brand – mirroring the ‘concession’ model used in the retail sector.
Two law firms have already signed up to the new initiative and have started their on-boarding process, with a further five expected to follow in the coming weeks.
Escalate’s unique dispute resolution process helps SMEs to achieve a prompt settlement to a wide range of bad debts and other commercial disputes, with fixed fees payable only on a successful outcome and no upfront costs. It is helping businesses to recover almost £100 million that is locked up in commercial disputes and has won numerous national awards.
Jonathon Bray Legal Services is a niche risk management company, which helps lawyers, and those entering the legal market, to overcome regulatory burdens, saving valuable time and resources.
The partnership with Jonathon Bray represents a completely new business model within the legal industry
Chris Clay, Managing Partner and co-founder of Escalate Law, said: “The pandemic-induced cash squeeze is driving increased tension between businesses and in supply chains, and we expect this to lead to a surge in litigation in 2021.
“In response, proactive law firms wanting to provide clients with a holistic service will need to consider if they should launch or strengthen their commercial litigation offers. They can either do this organically, by building up their own service from scratch, or they can plug in a ready-made team of specialists, who already have a track record in helping clients to unlock cash from commercial disputes.
“We’re excited about the prospects for this latest initiative, which represents a completely new business model within the legal industry and offers a compelling proposition for law firms and their clients.
“We’re not using referral agreements, nor are we adopting a traditional white label model. The teams will be more like a concession in a department store, with experts embedded in the client law firm but going to market using both the firm’s name and the Escalate branded product.
“The concept is based on the model that we’ve pioneering with around 60 accountancy firms, which all now use the Escalate process. Our accountancy firm partners are seeing significant interest from their clients in dispute resolution services, and we’re confident that law firm clients will see the benefits too.”
Jonathon Bray, director and founder of Jonathon Bray Legal Services, said: “We’ve been working closely with Escalate Law for a number of years, and we know just how powerful the Escalate process can be in unlocking commercial disputes.
“Prior to the pandemic, SMEs were estimated to be writing off £40 billion each year as commercial disputes. We know from our conversations with clients that the situation is deteriorating further at the moment, despite the fact that cashflow is more important than ever in the current economic environment and businesses can’t afford to write-off what their owed.
“This new approach has the potential to hugely benefit law firms and their clients who are dealing with cashflow problems and commercial disputes. Working together, the legal profession has an opportunity to make a real difference during what is proving to be an exceptionally stressful time for SMEs.”
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