Addleshaw Goddard solicitors have announced that they have entered into a Conditional Fee Agreement with the Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky to pursue his claim against Chelsea FC owner and fellow oligarch, Roman Abramovich.
The firm's decision is a brave one and a gamble but, if the case is won, Addleshaw's will be in line for a huge success fee of many millions of pounds (some say £30m+!) on top of their normal fees. The case is worth a potential $3.5bn and involves a claim that Abramovich forced Berezovsky in 2000-2003 to sell shares in the Sibneft oil company, the Rusal aluminum company and the TV channel ORT at lower than market prices.
The key thing here is that Berezovsky isn't exactly poor - he can quite afford to pay his (huge) legal bills and so this is a significant shift in the way that large law firms are viewing these sort of cases.
...and guess what is securing all of this? That's right, an After the Event Insurance policy has been purchased which will pay out if Berezovsky loses. So what sort of ATE Insurance premium is needed to cover potential adverse costs of £50m+? Well, this is being kept secret but it is rumoured to be in the region of £20m!
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