Shareholders who won a landmark legal action against Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) in the summer face a further wait for their money because of a dispute over costs.
Thousands of RBS investors, gathered together by the the RBoS Shareholder Action Group, won £200m in June from the bank, which settled claims that it misled shareholders over the health of the bank before a rights issue in 2008.
Law firm Signature Litigation has raised concerns around a £20m payment to a company called Evalusafety Limited agreed by the RBoS Shareholder Action Group. A firm under the name of Evalusafety Limited was incorporated in March 2013, according to documents at Companies House.
The law firm will not make the payment until the RBoS Shareholder Action Group has given a breakdown of the £20m cost and the ultimate beneficiaries of the payment.
Before RBS settled the case the RBoS Shareholder Action Group completely handed over management of the litigation to Manx Capital Partners. Manx is going through the process of verifying the thousands of claims brought by shareholders, who settled for 82p per share. Signature acts for the claimants and is instructed by Manx Capital Partners.
Manx Capital Partners is controlled by Trevor Hemmings, owner of Preston North End Football Club.
The case is one of the most notable examples of successful use of litigation funding in action against a bank. Litigation funders take on the risk of losing an action and having to pay costs, in exchange for a higher proportion of an award if the case is won.
The Mail on Sunday first revealed the disagreement over the payment to Evalusafety.
The RBoS Shareholder Action Group could not be reached for comment.
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