SAN FRANCISCO, CA—Legalist (www.legalist.com), a technology-enabled litigation finance firm, has announced the addition of Heather Zacharia, a litigator in Duane Morris LLP’s San Francisco office, as Investment Counsel. With almost a decade of litigation experience, she will join Curtis Smolar, former partner at Fox Rothschild LLP and Legalist General Counsel, and the rest of Legalist’s San Francisco-based team in the deployment of Legalist Fund II.
Started in 2016 by two Harvard drop-outs and advised by former US Court of Appeals judge Richard A. Posner, Legalist invests in commercial litigation by using algorithms that scrape state and federal court records to source and help underwrite investments. Unlike traditional litigation funders, Legalist exclusively focuses on mid-market cases that require less than $1 million in funding. Legalist raised $100 million for Fund II in 2019.
“Heather’s experience across a broad range of litigation practices, including employment, insurance, and product liability, will be a major asset to Legalist’s growth,” said Legalist CEO and co-founder Eva Shang. “Legalist’s unique combination of technology and human expertise is what allows us to underwrite David vs. Goliath cases quickly and efficiently.”
Ms. Zacharia received her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of Law, where she was a certified law clerk with the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office. After law school, Ms. Zacharia joined Walsworth as a litigator focused on products liability and commercial litigation. Since her time with Walsworth, Ms. Zacharia has practiced at other regional and national firms, most recently Duane Morris LLP, where her practice expanded to include insurance coverage/bad faith litigation and employment/benefits litigation.
Legalist is an algorithmic litigation finance firm that helps small businesses pay for their lawsuits. Headquartered in San Francisco, Legalist uses machine learning and AI technology to source and underwrite litigation investments. The company manages assets over $110 million and has been featured in the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, and more. www.legalist.com