What is the Business Litigation Process?
All businesses encounter disputes from time to time in the regular course of business. The degree of seriousness among those disputes can range significantly, with many being relatively easy to settle internally. However, some issues rise to a level of intensity that it will take some form of official negotiation involving the claims of all parties. While the typical business conflict will only involve two primary entities, there are also occasions when multiple actors are impacted. Corporations commonly have internal departments that focus on these operational issues, but for the small business owner, even small business disputes can seriously hamper business growth or sustainability. This is when formal litigation becomes necessary.
The first alternative for a business conflict resolution is mediation. Business operators who are entering a mediation negotiation will typically retain an attorney who can address the all aspects of the conflict and present their client’s legal rights. A successful mediation will result in a binding written agreement between all parties, including signatures of the primary parties and their legal counsel. However, a mediation process does not require the parties to produce a resolution. The case from this point will either go to arbitration or result in the filing of a lawsuit.
Arbitration is much different from mediation. In a mediation, all parties can discuss their differences informally and have a more thorough evaluation of what it would take for an agreement. In an arbitration proceeding, each side presents their legal case to an arbitrator who makes a final ruling based on the evidence. Cases are not argued in arbitration as in a mediation process. In addition, decisions made by an arbitrator are legal and binding decisions of the court and are not subject to an appeal. All decisions are final in arbitration.
Entering into either of these conflict resolution methods without experienced legal counsel is never advisable. A professional negotiator is a real advantage in a mediation process, and all legal aspects must be valid according to law with arbitration. Any South Carolina business that is facing a business dispute should contact a Santa Clara business litigation attorney at Hansen Law Firm, P.C. for a comprehensive evaluation for a successful resolution to the issue.