Disputes are an inevitable part of doing business. They need to be handled swiftly and decisively so as to minimise the cost and potentially permanent damage to a business relationship.
Our commercial dispute resolution solicitors will act quickly to resolve your dispute, whether you are taking the initiative in claiming against a third party or whether someone is claiming against you. We will help you to gather the relevant facts so that we can establish the strength of your negotiating position. Armed with all the information we need, our experts will then work through the range of options available to you and help you to decide the most appropriate course of action in your particular circumstances.
Certainly you want to win your dispute but you do not want to throw good money after bad. We will give you pragmatic and commercial advice so that you can make the decisions and stay in control.
The straightforward way to resolve disputes may well be to negotiate. You may already have tried unsuccessfully to reach agreement with the other party, you may feel that you cannot talk to them or you may simply need help building your negotiating position prior to starting talks. Alternatively, you may need specific advice on your legal rights or just someone to talk through a difficult or confusing problem. We can listen to your arguments, strengthen key points and minimise weaknesses. If you wish, we can sometimes negotiate on your behalf but more often you are best placed to argue and ultimately reach agreement. Your dispute might have to be resolved by means other than direct negotiation. We can help then too, perhaps before you commence any litigation in court.
Alternative dispute resolution
Courts will generally expect that both parties have engaged in some form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) before proceeding down the litigation route. ADR has advantages in that it can prevent commercially sensitive information from being disclosed in an open court. Mediation is much quicker and cheaper than litigation and can be used in many cases as an alternative to lengthy court battles. Arbitration requires each side to present their argument to an independent arbitrator who will make the decisions. This form of ADR is more expensive than mediation. However, it is decisive in that the arbitrator’s decision is legally binding. In some contractual disputes it is stipulated in the contract that instead of going to court arbitration must be followed.
You may have tried to resolve your dispute but the other party has or intends to fight back. This may take the form of a claim against you. We can also advise you about your legal position and the strength of any such counter claims. You may be the subject of a claim and wish to fight back with a claim of your own, in which case, we can assess the merits of your argument and advise you about tactics for resolving your dispute.
Commencing litigation by issuing court proceedings is a big step. Immediately you do this you can become liable for the other party’s costs even if you later withdraw from legal action. We can give you dispassionate advice about your prospects of success in a dispute. If you and we believe litigation is appropriate we will fight your case strongly and with conviction, but we will always keep you aware of the commercial implications of litigation – the risks, benefits and costs.
How we can help
If you are in dispute or in a potential conflict situation, we would advise that you take legal advice sooner rather than later. Prompt action will generally mean there are more options available to you, and potential damage is limited. We can discuss with you different funding options in resolving your dispute, whether acting for you if you have legal expenses insurance or having staged costs if you are paying the bill yourself. Our expert team can help in a range of situations. If you would like to know more, or just want a confidential chat about your options, contact us today.