Business litigation is an expensive, complicated and, sadly, at times unavoidable undertaking. It is very common that companies sometimes have to face unexpected legal disputes such as defending themselves in lawsuits by employees or contractors, negotiate contracts disagreements or have to protect or enforce their intellectual property rights.
When so much time and money is at stake, it is important for a business owner to avoid the following business litigation mistakes to make sure not to have the time and money wasted:
1. Avoiding the Litigation, Completely:
Few business owners avoid business litigation and believe their time and resources are too important to waste on litigation. They rely on the attorney they hired to deal with this issue. However, this is the wrong approach and should be avoided. In order to have the best representation possible, an attorney needs to be aware of the facts, witnesses and documents. A business owner has all this valuable information required to fight a lawsuit effectively. Moreover, the expertise of an attorney is limited to law, hence, the litigation affects the case. The attorney needs the help of the owner to devise an effective litigation strategy and decide accordingly to make sure it matches the business interests.
2. Unnecessary Documents:
A rule of thumb is to not record anything in writing that you cannot smoothly defend later during the litigation if used against you. However, because of social media and other channels of written communication, virtually it is not possible to follow this rule. There are emails, text messages, and tweets that can be easily taken out and used in the court during the hearing even after years.
So the best way is to ensure that these types of documents are removed routinely. Don’t keep a document where there is no legal reason to keep it.
3. Not Keeping the Necessary Documents:
There are a few documents that you would want to keep. Documents that are self-explanatory, are difficult to be misunderstood or misinterpreted and can be very helpful. For instance, documents stating the beginning of a company, manufacturing or development of a product, or any necessary business transaction are most often very crucial during business litigation. So, before you decide to destroy these
documents, consider their value.
4. Not Being Diligent:
Business litigation is expensive. Some business owners try to reduce the cost by cutting edges in preparation. They assume that litigation will resolve before any trial, or they can prepare it later o if the case is not resolved quickly.
However, a business owner should take litigation seriously from the very beginning, otherwise, this will make the owner face dire consequences. You must show diligence to understand the law as well as the relevant facts. This enables the person to make an informed decision about how to proceed. In case of being unprepared, the opposing party will catch the fault quickly, and use it against you by taking advantage of it.
5. Failing to Determine the Value of the Case:
Most often, the parties get into litigation without knowing what the possible remedies may be. For instance, is the case worth $100 million? Unless you know the possible risks and rewards, it is impossible to devise an effective strategy for your litigation. You may end up spending too little or too many resources depending on the possible results.
6. Believing that You Don’t Need an Attorney:
The biggest mistake is to think that you don’t need an attorney at all. This idea may get you into big trouble. You may be able to read the legal documents such as a statue, contracts but may not know the actual legal meaning of it. Business law is complicated and attorneys have years of experience in dealing with such cases. So instead of trying to applying the law yourself, hire an expert business litigation attorney.
7. Giving in to the Emotions:
During the process, there may arise a certain situation when you experience strong emotions. A company may have experienced the wrong actions of the other company. But this does not mean that litigation is the best option. In a few cases, the cost of litigation surpasses the benefit. So, don’t let your emotions rule your litigation decisions.
8. Remaining Impatient during the Litigation:
It may take years for the litigation to reach trial, however, it may not be the end of it. The case can be appealed, extended, stayed or retried extending the litigation for several years. In a few cases, the litigation can be settled earlier, but this is not the case in every litigation. So, the right option may be to let the litigation proceed to appeal, and for that matter, the person has to be very patient.
9. Considering Every Case is the Same:
Although the cases may be similar, no two cases are the same. Attorneys involved parties, laws, facts, and judges vary from case to case. Treating every case, in the same way, may end up committing serious mistakes as mentioned above.