Contract Dispute Litigation Mediation | Contract Disputes Lawyer
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Commercial Contract Disputes
A commercial contract sets out the key or “material” terms of a transaction between two or more people. Some agreements must be in writing to be enforceable. Even when a writing isn’t required having a written contract gives you the opportunity to manage client expectations, minimize disputes, and set out the rules for resolution if the contract is violated. When Commercial Contract Disputes arise, it is time to contact a reputable law firm like ND Greene PC.
What is a commercial contract breach?
Let’s delve into the fundamentals here. A commercial contract is when two parties enter into a legally enforceable agreement for goods or services. The parties must then do what they promise. A breach can be technical or material. A technical breach means that the party didn’t do something that the commercial contract required them to do.
What is a material contract breach?
A material breach of a commercial contract is a failure to perform that goes to the heart or essential reason for the agreement that leads to damages, for example, you deliver $10,000 worth of plants to a client’s house and they don’t pay. The payment failure is a material breach since the only reason you delivered the plants was for the money. Not being paid, defeats the purpose of the commercial contract.
Purpose of mediation and arbitration in commercial contract disputes
Mediation and arbitration are Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) techniques, meaning they are alternatives to litigating a Commercial Contract Dispute. When both the sides are at loggerheads, mediation and arbitration can be viable alternatives to court. There is a critical difference between mediation and arbitration. Mediation is wholly voluntary and will not result in a resolution of the issues unless the parties agree to a settlement. Arbitration is an alternative to court and the mediator makes a final decision on the matters presented. If ADR is possible meet with our business lawyers for a commercial contract dispute immediately.
The elements of arbitration for commercial contract dispute or provision
An arbitration provision for commercial contract dispute should set out:
- The number of parties
- How the commercial contract dispute arbitrators are selected and the required number
- The location of the commercial contract dispute arbitrators
- The rules followed by the arbitration institution, whether the American Arbitration Association (Commercial Rules) or something else.
- Who pays for the arbitration during the commercial contract dispute?
- Whether and when the parties can recover attorney’s fees for a commercial contract dispute
- Whether the commercial contract dispute Arbitrator has the ability to reform or modify any restrictive covenants such as non-competition terms if they would be otherwise unenforceable
- Any other limits on or things the parties can recover during the commercial contract dispute arbitration.
When business conflicts arise, mediation and arbitration often are sought-after resolution processes. When considering adding an arbitration provision into your commercial contract to resolve your business dispute, you need to balance the limits of discovery, the information you can get from the other side in litigation, with the reduced time spent in commercial contract dispute resolution and the possible money at stake to determine if arbitration would be an effective Commercial Dispute Resolution tool for you. When you move forward with the commercial contract dispute arbitration, our business attorney takes all the steps to ensure the process is as seamless and quick as possible. When you are looking for legal advice on arbitration of Commercial Contract Disputes, contact N D Greene PC first.
Starting an ADR proceeding for commercial contract disputes
Commercial Contract Disputes should be brought to the attention of the senior members of the organization to resolve informally when possible. If this isn’t possible and the decision is made to try commercial contract dispute arbitration, then that process starts with the steps listed in the agreement, if any, or the ADR organization’s required process.
Generally, the steps involved include:
- The commercial contract dispute claimant sends a notice for arbitration to the adverse party and the selected ADR fact finder and ADR Company;
- The notice includes all commercial contract disputes to be resolved;
- An arbitrator is selected through the process set out in the agreement or the ADR companies if the parties haven’t determined this process;
- The adverse party or parties will have to respond within a stipulated period.
The arbitrator then hears the case put forth by the Commercial Contract Disputes lawyers of the parties before deciding on the award. In arbitration, that hearing can take a few days to months depending upon the complexity of the case. A commercial contract dispute arbitration award is received after the evidence and summations of the parties are considered. There are limited grounds to challenge a commercial contract dispute arbitration award. On receiving the arbitration award, the successful party can have that award entered by a court and it will have the same enforceability as a court-ordered judgment. A commercial contract dispute lawyer can then help get the award enforced.
If the parties opted for commercial contract dispute mediation, the processes are different because the role of a mediator is different. The mediator’s job is to facilitate settlement discussion, more on those below, to help the parties reach a mutually agreeable resolution. If a commercial contract dispute settlement is reached, the parties will sign a settlement agreement. If not, the parties can either opt for additional commercial contract dispute mediation sessions or proceed to arbitration or litigation. Our commercial contract dispute attorney provides guidance for mediation and your next steps if mediation doesn’t resolve the issues.
Filing a breach lawsuit
When mediation hasn’t worked and arbitration isn’t an option for your Commercial Contract Dispute you may need to file a lawsuit for breach of commercial contract. This process is started with the filing of a complaint, which is a legal document that contains the statement of the case, by the commercial contract dispute plaintiff (the party asserting the violation). Once the complaint is served through legal channels, the defendant has a limited amount of time to reply. How much time varies by state and court. The commercial contract dispute defendant can also file for a counterclaim if they believe there is a commercial contract dispute or other claims against the plaintiff.
Our Commercial Contract Disputes lawyers can assist and advise you about your possible claims and litigation strategy.
The complexity arises in determining what commercial contract dispute claims to file and where to file the lawsuit. Depending on what a party has done, their actions may not just give rise to just a simple breach of commercial contract. For example, a party who violates a non-disclosure agreement may also have engaged in a Trade Secrets Act violation. So, the one ‘bad act’ may give rise to several causes of action.
Similarly, even if you didn’t fully perform your side of the agreement, you may have legally valid reasons for doing so that provide you with a defense to the commercial contract dispute claim.
It’s important to seek professional advice to determine what causes of actions, commercial contract dispute claims or defenses you may have in any Commercial Contract Dispute.
Once you determine what claims exist, you need to decide where to file the lawsuit. Commercial Contract Disputes are “civil” causes of action. Our business lawyers consider the following when determining the right place to file the case:
The size of the commercial contract dispute claim
Certain courts have limitations on the dollar amount of the cases they can hear. It also may be advantageous to have certain matters heard in the lower courts, when possible. Check with your commercial contract dispute lawyer for more.
The jurisdiction of the court
The commercial contract dispute claim must be brought to the right place or “venue.” This can be where the transaction took place, where the defendant is located, or where the commercial contract says disputes must be brought
The time period within which the breach is to be brought to court or the Statute of Limitation
The Statute of Limitations varies from state to state. Commercial Contract Disputes can be barred in as little as two years in some states. Other claims may have shorter time limits. Verify how long you have to file a lawsuit with your commercial contract dispute attorney.
Sometimes the remedy that makes a party “whole” or as close to getting the benefit of the bargain as possible isn’t money. In Real Estate, for example, it may be the remedy the buyer wants is to force the seller to transfer the property or to be granted “specific performance.” Generally, this is a remedy that only the higher courts can award. So, while asking for the $5000 down payment might be something the lower court could hear, because the other remedy, forcing the seller to convey, is something only the circuit (or higher) court could grant, the case would have to be filed in that higher court. Your remedies and how they impact your choice of where to file are something that our commercial contract dispute lawyer helps determine.
Whether and when ADR would be available or appropriate
In some cases, the Commercial Contract Disputes are resolved through ADR like mediation even after a case is filed. As I mentioned above, higher courts will compel the parties to mediation as part of the trial process. Even without this, both parties can come to mutually agreeable terms to resolve the issue amicably and good litigators and Commercial Contract Dispute attorneys will explore whether these options exist for their clients at all stages of the case.
Defending a breach of a commercial contract dispute claim
Not all is lost when you’re sued for breach of contract. There are often valid defenses to a commercial contract dispute claim. Some of these include:
No meeting of the minds
Fundamental to having a commercial contract is the parties need to agree to all the material terms. So, what happens when they each have a different understanding of those terms? It may be that there isn’t an enforceable agreement.
Flyboy was thinking of purchasing an airplane and hired a company to perform a pre-purchase inspection. The company performed an inspection. Based on the inspection results, Flyboy purchased the airplane. Turned out, that there was a lot wrong with the plane that if Flyboy knew about, he wouldn’t have bought the plane. He sued the company for breach of commercial contract and negligence saying the pre-purchase inspection was inadequate. Ultimately, the Court ruled that the parties each meant something different by the term pre-purchase inspection”and no commercial contract had actually been formed as a result so there was no agreement for the inspection company to breach.
Statute of Frauds
The Statute of Frauds requires certain agreements, such as those to loan a certain amount of money or to sell real estate, to be in writing. If there aren’t sufficient writings to support the agreement then it isn’t enforceable. A note of caution here, these writings don’t have to meet the requirements of a formal commercial contract. They just have to be clear and document enough of the agreement to avoid fraud. We enforced an agreement to sell stock which would have otherwise been void under the Statute of Frauds using email correspondence and payment receipts.
The fact that the person now claiming breach was the first one to violate the commercial contract may be a total defense to their Commercial Contract Dispute claim. Let’s say your contact has you delivering widgets in three installments and you deliver the first group but the client doesn’t pay for them. You are generally excused from delivering the second and third batch because of the client’s non-payment for the first. This defense also comes up often in employee noncompetition or non-compete litigation.
This defense is similar to the first breach defense. This time, however, rather than just not living up to the agreement, the other party actively stops you from performing. For example, if you’re a landscaper and are half finished with the work but the client kicks your crew off the job, they’ve just rendered your performance “impossible.” If they then sue you for breach of a commercial contract for not having finished the landscaping work before their big event, you can defend against that commercial contract dispute claim based on “impossibility” and they may still owe you for the work they prevented you from performing.
You’ve probably heard this term a lot in recent years. If the “thing” that keeps you from performing is beyond your control and isn’t your client’s wrongdoing, then your performance might be excused or delayed under a force majeure or “acts of God” provision in your agreement.
These are just some of the defenses that might be available to you if you are in a Commercial Contract Dispute. If you are notified of a Commercial Contract Dispute, it’s important you seek professional advice as to your options as soon as possible.
Tips to avoid Commercial Contract Claims
Now that we’ve looked at what to do if someone doesn’t live up to the contract you struck with them or accuses you of breaching the agreement, how do you avoid being in this position in the first place? Good news. Most Commercial Contract Disputes can be avoided or minimized.
The best tip to avoid commercial contract disputes is communication. A thorough exchange of all details between the parties involved is key to avoiding commercial contract disputes both at the contract formation stage and when disputes arise.
Communication before contracting
Planning and communication prevent lawsuits.
If there are limits to your services, let the potential customer know that upfront.
Priya maintained other businesses’ computer systems. She had been in the industry for years and understood that there were factors beyond her control in might determine whether the system would stay operational, including whether or not necessary upgrades were made when recommended. As a result of hard lessons earlier in her career, her commercial contract specifically excluded system downtime caused by the company’s failure to upgrade as recommended or employee-loaded malware from any future commercial contract dispute claim. A customer didn’t want to spend the money to upgrade its servers when she recommended it do so. Nine months later the customer’s server finally crashed, and lots of data were lost. The customer threatened to sue Priya, who was my client, for negligence and breach of commercial contract as she scrambled to get the system working again and recover as much data as possible. We wrote a strong but polite reply to the customer noting that the commercial contract exclusion meant it didn’t have a commercial contract dispute claim against Priya because it refused to upgrade the server when she recommended it do so. Because the commercial contract addressed a known hazard of Priya’s business (client unwillingness to upgrade when recommended), she saved thousands of dollars in litigation expenses and possible damages when the system failed. Planning is the key to survival in business. Because Priya communicated that she wasn’t responsible when the client didn’t follow her upgrade recommendations, she avoided a costly Commercial Contract Dispute.
For known contingencies or hazards for your work, communicate these to your potential client, and build those risks and how they are handled into your commercial contract to avoid later disputes.
Jose set up his freelance editing company. He gave his writer clients estimates for his editing services based on the quality of the first three chapters of the book and the total word count. Victor requested a quote from Jose. Based on the first three chapters, Jose estimated he’d spend twenty hours on the project and gave Victor an estimate. Jose’s email contained a note that the figure was an estimate only and the actual cost might be more or less of depending on the quality of the rest of the manuscript. Authors work hard on their first three chapters since agents often request them when considering whether to represent the book.
Unfortunately, Jose soon discovered that the rest of the manuscript was not of the same polished quality. Editing the novel would take much more than twenty hours. Jose submitted a revised estimate. Victor went through the roof and accused Jose of bait and switch tactics. Victor reported Jose to the unofficial writers’ oversight board, Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers’ of America (“SFWA”) and an influential writers’ forum, Predators & Editors (pred-ed.com). Jose’s career as an editor and membership in SFWA was at risk. Jose could have easily avoided this legal landmine by properly managing the client relationship and setting for the limits on his estimate, i.e. that it was based on the quality of the sample and was only an estimate, more clearly in his communications with Victor.
Communications after a Commercial Contract Dispute occurs
Once a Commercial Contract Dispute occurs, there is a narrow window where communication will determine if the dispute can be amicably resolved or if things are going to get much worse. First and foremost, you need to understand why the other party is upset. This involves the most difficult communication skill. Listening.
If you have made a mistake – for example, sending a lilac bridesmaid dress when a sapphire-colored one was ordered – find out what it will take to correct the situation or address the harm caused by the error. If the issue is more complicated or liability is truly disputed, then an amicable resolution may require more creative solutions or may not be possible short of litigation.
The guidance of a commercial contract dispute lawyer is essential during these circumstances. N D Greene PC assigns a skilled commercial contract dispute lawyer for each of the clients, who work with you to resolve your commercial contract disputes in the best and most efficient way possible. You don’t need to worry about tackling commercial contract disputes alone. Feel free to contact our commercial contract dispute lawyer to get acquainted with the ways with which you can resolve commercial contract disputes.
Commercial contract dispute settlements
Statistically, most cases don’t go to trial. Many are resolved through settlement. A commercial contract dispute settlement agreement includes terms and clauses that resolve the issues raised by the parties. The main benefit of a commercial conflict settlement agreement is the avoidance of the costs and uncertainty of litigation. Professional guidance to resolve the commercial contract dispute is critical to reaching the best-negotiated outcome.
It can be challenging to negotiate and draft a balanced commercial contract dispute settlement agreement. Look for commercial contract dispute lawyers near me with decades of experience in negotiating and preparing successful settlements. Our effective commercial contract dispute negotiation and drafting techniques have yielded the best results for our clients by cutting down their expenses and achieving their goals.
A commercial contract dispute settlement is a less expensive and more satisfying way to resolve a commercial agreement conflict. Because the parties voluntarily agree to the terms, they can be creative in reaching a satisfying result for all parties. Our commercial lawyers have immense experience in negotiated settlements. Settlements can protect your business from embarrassment and bankruptcy.
Negotiating a commercial contract dispute settlement (or anything else really)
People sometimes negotiate without a clear goal in mind. Don’t do this. If you do, you won’t be satisfied with the result. Be super clear on what you want to achieve before you start. Know both your “high position”, which is where you start the commercial contract dispute negotiation and your “low position,” your line-in-the-sand where, if a deal that doesn’t include “this,” whatever “this” is, it’s not a deal you are willing to accept.
Every commercial contract dispute negotiation has risks. In setting your high/low settlement range you must assess the risk of not getting the deal or getting the deal on the terms offered. Business lawyers call this handicapping a case.
I had a case of employee dishonesty where the liability was fairly clear and the resulting damage to the business was over a million dollars. The risk of not getting some sort of judgment was fairly low, but the risk of not being able to collect that judgment was fairly high. After all, the client had fired the employees, and their fledging business was just getting started. The client also had to consider what would happen if the former employees filed for bankruptcy and what it would the costs be to protect the judgment in a bankruptcy court. Another cost that had to be considered as the legal fees and expenses of a trial. The client also had to weigh the benefits of a quick resolution over three years of litigation. The other side had to weigh the risks of a two-million-dollar judgment against them, plus the litigation expenses and whatever other factors, such as adverse publicity, were also important to them. Knowing and weighing the risks for both sides better prepares you for commercial contract dispute negotiation.
Even though we could have gone into that commercial contract dispute negotiation demanding over a million dollars on the strength of the case, we started well under that amount because the risk of protracted litigation and the difficulty in the collection were important considerations for the client. The downside to the approach was that we started close to my client’s line-in-the-sand number, so any commercial contract dispute settlement would likely require getting creative.
Be Willing to Put the First Offer on the Table
One client was worried about entering into commercial contract dispute settlement negotiations. He wanted to settle the case but didn’t want to start the discussion. The client thought he’d appear weak by making the first offer. After all, if we wanted to settle, didn’t that mean something was wrong with his commercial contract dispute claim? While that worry is understandable, it’s often misplaced.
Professional commercial contract dispute negotiators, like lawyers, know commercial contract dispute settlement is more about the numbers than about fault. If your company is sued for $30,000 (an amount above most small claim court’s limits so the business needs a commercial contract dispute attorney) the costs of defending the lawsuit are more than what the plaintiff wants. In that situation a “nuisance value” or “defense costs” commercial contract dispute settlement of less than the anticipated expense to fight the case may make sense. Now, sometimes there are larger factors are in play, like other potential claimants with similar commercial contract dispute claims, and a defense cost offer isn’t in the company’s best interest— but often it will be.
There’s another critical factor in making the first commercial contract dispute settlement offer, doing so can offer a significant tactical value. The person who takes the first position sets the tone and parameters for the commercial contract dispute negotiation. You establish the terms that are important to you and the other side must respond to them. It’s harder to introduce a brand-new term into the deal than it is to tweak an existing item of discussion.
Ask for What You Want!
If you never ask for what you want, you’ll never get it. A good negotiator knows the result she wants before she starts the discussion. It’s okay to be assertive. Being assertive (stating your position clearly and calmly) is required. Being assertive means letting the other side know what you want without being a jerk and while being clear in your communications.
If your “must have” number is $50,000 don’t be afraid to draw that line in the sand. Common wisdom used to be that, if your bottom line was $50,000, then you should start the commercial contract dispute negotiation at $150,000. I’ve seen people take this approach and have it backfire because their puffed-up number was so far beyond the other side’s top commercial contract dispute settlement position that discussions stalled. Be realistic when you ask for what you want. Mostly, I find starting with a position closer to my client’s end-point more often results in commercial contract dispute settlement; the process is shorter and both sides are happier with the result.
If a deal must have a particular term in it to be viable for you, ask for that term up front. There’s no sense in spending time and energy on points that aren’t critical.
A landlord sued his tenant for not paying rent, and the tenant countersued that the landlord’s conduct had effectively evicted her. By the time the case came to trial the landlord needed an occupancy statement from the ex-tenant. See, the pipes froze, and the insurance would deny the landlord’s damage claim if the house was vacant when that happened. Getting a statement that the former tenant’s rental agreement was still in effect when the pipes broke was important to the landlord. The landlord told the tenant that he wouldn’t settle his rent claim without this statement. Did it give the tenant an edge in negating the price down? Sure. But the landlord cared more about having the insurance cover his broken pipes. If the landlord hadn’t asked for what he wanted, the parties would’ve spent time on issues that didn’t matter. Worse, the landlord might not have gotten that critical statement.
Listen to the Other Side!
I am often amazed at what people will call commercial contract dispute settlement “discussions.” I had one case where my opposing counsel spent the entire discussion talking at me. He lectured me on how my position was wrong and why I should do what he wanted. Think that worked? Right, it didn’t. Because he wasn’t willing to listen and adjust his strategy based on the information I gave him, he failed to learn vital information and put his client on a path that led to a large judgment against him. Most people will tell you what they need and what they consider a win if you listen to them.
“Okay,” you say. “But how do I get them to tell me everything?”
You ask the right kind of questions. There are two questions: open and closed. An open question requires the person answering to give a narrative response. A closed question calls for only a “yes” or “no” answer. Anyone with teenage children understands the difference between the questions: “Did you have a good day at school?” and “What did you do today at school?” The first question is closed. Your child answers by nodding his head, or grunting, if you’re lucky. The second question (what did you do) requires at least a few words as an answer. Asking “why” the other side has taken a specific position will help you understand their concerns.
By asking open questions and actively listening, you can avoid unnecessary conflict points and better craft a solution that works for everyone.
Know What Matters
People make mistakes in commercial contract dispute negotiations when they aren’t clear on their numbers or don’t know which terms are worth pushing back on.
Don’t pay more or charge less than you can afford. People sometimes think that if they cut their price on this deal they’ll build a relationship where in which they can charge what they should down the road. Sometimes this happens. However, that strategy often backfires. By cutting your price to make this deal you jeopardize the business and its long-term viability. Remember that if the client gets a service at $15.00 dollars an hour, that client’s going to continue to want to pay $15.00 dollars an hour for future work. Asking for a 25% increase on the next deal isn’t going to create a goodwill or happy feelings. Realistically, what happens is you’re going to keep doing that business at a loss until those losses eat away at the company’s bottom line. Companies have gone out of business using this rationale. If you can’t do the deal profitably for less than $20.00 an hour, don’t.
Besides making sure the money works, you must understand which terms are worth fighting over. Know what matters. As an example, a new writer can spend a lot of time and energy trying to get a larger cash advance or higher royalty payment for his book than the publisher offers. But unless you’re a multi-time best-selling author, royalty rates fall into certain industry-standard ranges because of the economics of the business. Most first novels lose money. The margins are thin in publishing. By pushing on a term where the publisher has little to or no give, the writer can create ill will. Instead of poisoning the relationship, the new writer should negotiate what’s important: for example, the rights to the story he gives up and when he gets those rights back. While a writer might get a few hundred dollars more by negotiating an advance, a term with very little give, he may also lose all rights to the story forever if he doesn’t know what really matters.
Negotiate in Person
An email is a great tool in most situations. Commercial contract dispute negotiation isn’t a place to use it. A person can hide the emotion in an email. An email gives the other side an opportunity to practice their argument and craft a stronger response for a relatively weak position. Commercial contract dispute negotiation is a give-and-take with its own rhythm. Email disrupts this rhythm. Negotiate face-to-face whenever possible, especially when you have a stronger position. You’ll get more accomplished faster.
Don’t be Wishy-Washy
If you’ve told the other side that your best offer is $250, stop negotiating. Don’t then drop your best and final offer to $240. You lose your negotiating credibility and power when you contradict your prior position. If you can’t be firm, you’ll likely make a less advantageous deal.
Show the Other Side the Value of Your Position for Them
You don’t “win” a commercial contract dispute negotiation unless the other side also “wins.” The phrase “win-win situation’” is overused and hackneyed, but there’s an underlying truth to it. If the other side doesn’t have a good reason to agree, you won’t close the deal. Learn as much as you can about the other side on as many levels as you can. What may motivate the other side might be something outside the deal, like their philosophy of life or some other “principle.”
Your negotiating counterpart must see that they’ve been listened to and that they get something from the agreement. The benefit can be relief from a negative, such as resolving a case without a trial and reducing their exposure, or a positive gain, such as getting something of value. The right balance of negative relief and positive gain will depend on the commercial contract dispute negotiation. In settling a lawsuit relief from a negative will be a large driving factor. While negotiating with a new business partner should focus on the benefits both sides receive from the deal.
This is the part of commercial contract dispute negotiation I love the most. The best thing about negotiations is that you can agree to terms that no court could impose. A court’s job, usually, is to award the injured party money. Money is good. Don’t get me wrong. But money may not always be the best answer. Sometimes positions that seem very different or too far apart to resolve can be reconciled with a bit of creativity.
An executive’s employment contract gave her twelve months’ severance pay if she was fired “without cause” and nothing if she was fired with “cause.” As often happens when I don’t write the contract, “cause” was a nebulous term. When the executive wouldn’t sleep with the company’s president she was fired for “cause;” i.e., they called it poor performance. She sued for sexual harassment, and breach of the contract, arguing that the “cause” was manufactured. Her bottom line in the commercial contract dispute settlement position was 6 six months’ severance pay and repayment of her legal fees. During the commercial contract dispute settlement negotiations, it became obvious that the company didn’t want to go to trial. It didn’t want to have the company’s dirty laundry aired in court because it was about to go public and couldn’t afford the bad press. This gave the former executive an advantage. However, it was equally apparent that the company would refuse to settle a “sexual harassment” claim.
So, we got creative.
The former executive was also a minority shareholder in the company. The parties agreed to a commercial contract dispute settlement number amount and apportioned the bulk of the payment to the company’s repurchase of her stock. The company won because it reduced its liability and risk, and had no history of settling a “sexual harassment” claim. The former executive won because she got the number money she wanted and the company’s records reflected that she resigned and not that she was fired.
Importance of hiring an attorney for contract disputes
Now that you know there are numerous ways an agreement can be breached and possible dispute resolution methods, let’s talk about finding the right legal representation to negotiate those contracts and resolve disputes. If your business is incorporated (a corporation or limited liability company), it will be required to retain counsel to pursue its matters in court. Even if you aren’t required to retain a trial lawyer, you’ve probably better off hiring one anyway. Pro se litigants, those representing themselves, are held to the same standards as lawyers in court and ADR.
Here are a few important reasons why you need a commercial contract dispute attorney. Your business attorney will:
Help understand the contract
Lawyers love their legal mumbo-jumbo. Not all words mean what they appear to when used in a legal contract. The word “shall” can, in fact, mean “may” in your contract depending on the context. Determining if a material breach has occurred or if related claims exist and what defenses may be asserted are critical to deciding whether to sue. Besides explaining to you the meaning, our commercial contract dispute lawyer will help you analyze and look for loopholes in your commercial contracts.
Often, the best way to resolve a breach of commercial contract dispute is to negotiate a resolution that is fair to all concerned. If you can reach an agreement to resolve the dispute then you can save a lot of time and money. Better yet, your business attorney will help negotiate the contract in the first place ensuring that any needed limitations and liability caps are in the agreement to minimize potential future disputes.
Advocate on your behalf
Lawyers specialized in dealing with commercial contract dispute cases will not just point out mistakes but will also advocate on your behalf with the opposing party and the Court to get you the best result possible.
Know the court rules and procedures
Court proceedings follow a set of rules and procedures. You are entitled to request information from the other side and must respond to certain pleadings and information requests with strict time limits. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in your claims or defenses, however valid, being taken away from you. It’s time-consuming enough to run your business, don’t add learning the law and the Court’s rules of procedure to your “to-do” list.
If obtaining the desired result through commercial contract dispute mediation or settlement is not possible, we will do our best to fight on your behalf and get a positive result by all legitimate means possible.
At the N D Greene PC, we’ve been handling various commercial contract disputes for over 25 years. Most cases are settled out of court as it is less expensive, and provides for discreet and quicker resolution. While we seek early and creative resolutions, where possible, we do not hesitate to litigate when that is your best course of action. As licensed commercial contract dispute lawyers, we provide services in DC, Maryland and Virginia, focusing on Fairfax County, Virginia, Loudoun County, VA, Washington, DC and Montgomery County, Maryland.