PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — From an unexpected health crisis to the next great gadget, crowdfunding campaigns work to spread the financial burden. Now, there’s a website that looks to do the same for legal battles.
CrowdJustice is designed to get you to put your money where your mindset is when it comes to law, order, freedom, and reform.
“One of the unfortunate truths about our justice system is the law is not very accessible for many people, especially in the social justice context,” says Kip Wainscott, the startup’s head of legal and external relations. “The barriers to entry can be really high.”
The platform, which is expanding to the US after getting its start in the UK, is designed to help people and non-profits recruit those who care enough about certain public-interest causes to come together and chip in for the fight.
“We’re certainly launching in the US in a moment where the public are eager to find ways to support action,” Wainscott says. “But we’re also seeing and better understanding the vital role the courts and legal system play in vindicating rights and holding the government to account and holding bad actors to account.”
CrowdJustice verifies that a licensed attorney is on board with your legal action and provides social media support for fundraising. If you hit your target, about 92 percent of the money goes right to your case.
The first US case the platform has featured is Trader Joe’s v. Pirate Joe’s, in which a Canadian entrepreneur purchasing Trader Joe’s products in Washington state and reselling them across the border is seeking for assistance as he defends himself from a trademark infringement claim made by the grocery chain.
CrowdJustice has raised $2 million in seed funding for its expansion into this country.