As business owners ourselves, we know that business can be personal. When you are facing problems in your business, especially when they have escalated to the level of litigation, your entire life can be consumed with worries about what might happen next and how you can ensure not only that your business survives, but that your employees, partners, and your family will be protected from any of the fallout. In these times, business litigation lawyers can prove themselves to be instrumental in resolving matters swiftly and in your best interests.
What exactly is business litigation law, though? What kinds of matters might arise? And, crucially, what do business litigation lawyers actually do? As leading experts in business litigation law, we at the Fetterman law have all these answers for you.
1. What are the Different Types of Business Litigation?
- Formation and licensing
- Contract disputes
- Real estate
- Product liability
- Mergers and acquisitions
- Intellectual property
- Employment disputes
2. What Does a Business Litigation Lawyer Do?
3. Get to Work with the Best in Business Litigation Law
What are the Different Types of Business Litigation?
Business litigation can be extremely complex, and just about every aspect of operating a small business in Florida can give rise to litigation, just as it can elsewhere. Entrepreneurs already know that business is risky, but that does not mean that legal risks need to be taken lightly. The first step in avoiding business litigation is understanding what types of issues might give rise to litigation in the first place. These are some of the most common legal matters that are litigated in business:
Formation and licensing
That is right, even at the very beginning of a company’s life, there can be problems that lead to litigation. While it is relatively rare to be sued because of anything that might arise in the formation and/or licensing of your new business, problems may occur between founders, shareholders, investors, and even government authorities if there was any misrepresentation or failure to act in good faith throughout the formation and initial licensing process.
Arguably one of the most common causes of disputes in a business is contracts. Contracts are the lifeblood of many commercial enterprises in setting out the legal rights and obligations of relevant parties, but when something goes wrong, the impact can be devastating if the matter is not handled expeditiously. From failure to perform to breach of confidentiality, numerous issues can arise under contracts and the prescribed ways in which they must be executed under state and federal laws.
Employees may be working from home in greater numbers than ever, but that does not mean that real estate has failed to retain its place of paramount importance in the business world. Whether owning or leasing property, or otherwise having permission to use it, numerous issues can arise in relation to the use of property by a company. Perhaps your landlord is accusing you of not taking enough care and damaging their property. Or perhaps there has been an incident that might have breached the terms of your lease. Whatever the matter, real estate litigation can be extremely disruptive to a company’s operations.
If you are a manufacturer or seller of products in any industry vertical, you know how important it is to ensure that products are safe and function as intended before landing in the customer’s hands. Likewise, if you rely upon certain products to execute your business, you also know that any defects or safety issues can have wide-ranging consequences. Product liability litigation is incredibly common in the United States, and the sums of money involved can be significant where the product in question fails and that negatively impacts the operation (and likely profitability) of a business.
Mergers and acquisitions
Mergers and acquisitions are critical to expanding a business and controlling competition, but they are a heavily regulated area of business and disputes can often surface between the lead parties in the merger or acquisition, as well as other stakeholders, such as shareholders, employees, and the general public.
Everything from the words that you write on your website to the trademarks, patents, and other copyrighted material that you rely upon to drive your business forward can be subject to intellectual property litigation. It is critical to observe intellectual property laws at every stage of growth and in any industry. The rise of the internet created considerable problems for businesses in protecting their intellectual property, with copycats and thieves taking advantage of a company’s materials with substantial harm done in the process.
Any business entity, owner, employee, or contractor can be held responsible for civil wrongs that cause harm to the public, employees and contractors, other businesses, and anyone else who might be connected with the operation of a particular company. Negligence, nuisance, fraudulent misrepresentation, trespass, conversion, defamation, fraud, unfair competition, and injurious falsehoods are just a few of the civil wrongs that a business can commit or suffer from, which often leads to litigation.
Combating organized crime, including that which occurs within a business or between businesses, has been a key priority of federal and state government agencies for decades. The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) of 1970 seeks to prevent the illegal use of funds in establishing, operating, or acquiring businesses, as well as to prevent the use of an enterprise to collect debts. If a company is suspected of being involved in illegal activity under RICO, litigation is likely to follow.
Employment disputes can have a particularly disruptive effect on a company because they not only impact the employee or employees involved in the actual dispute, but they can also impact the company as a whole. Dealing with employment disputes can sometimes be a strictly internal matter, but when the disputes are serious enough, employees often turn to tribunals to take action against their employers. Likewise, if an employer has been harmed as the result of the actions or inactions of an employee, there may be grounds to commence litigation against them.
These are just a few of the areas in which business litigation might arise. If you are facing issues in your business and fear that ligation may follow, secure the advice of a business litigation law expert today.
What Does a Business Litigation Lawyer Do?
The role of a business litigation lawyer is to represent clients in legal matters that arise throughout the course of forming and operating a business. Of course, a business litigation law expert will be most useful when litigation is pending or in progress, but having a business litigation lawyer on standby and working in a preventative capacity to manage any risks is excellent business practice.
These are the common responsibilities of a business litigation lawyer:
- Monitoring legal matters and proactively managing any matters that could give rise to litigation.
- Conduct investigations into complaints and collect relevant evidence for use in court or settlement proceedings.
- Drafting responses to complaints from the general public, employees, government officials, or other businesses.
- Preparing litigation strategies and representing client companies in court.
- Ensuring that a company complies with all relevant laws and regulations in relation to its area of business.
- Serving as a mediator throughout an internal settlement process, such as in employee disputes.
- Acting on behalf of the company in any situations in which its presence is required at tribunals, hearings, court cases, or government investigations.
- Providing companies and their teams with training on matters that could give rise to litigation if not handled correctly.
- Preparing policies and other documents that can help companies to avoid or appropriately respond to the threat of litigation in the future.
The core value proposition of a business litigation lawyer is that a company has somebody on its side who can rapidly and reliably respond to past, current, or future risks that may give rise to litigation. At the Fetterman law, we have combined decades of experience in managing litigation risks in the business context and provide our clients with peace of mind and reassurance that should any litigation be threatened or initiated, they have expert and experienced representation by their side throughout the entire process. We are the lawyers that want to get in the trenches with you to ensure that no matter the issue, your legal rights and interests are protected at all times.
Get to Work with the Best in Business Litigation Law
No one likes having to take matters to court, but with the right business litigation lawyer by your side, the process does not have to be as daunting as it might first seem. At the Fetterman law, we are ready to review your case in detail, advise you on your options, and represent you in court if necessary. And don’t worry about the litigation being overly complicated and unpredictable – we will do our absolute best to explain everything to you without legalese and work with you to develop a fee arrangement that keeps costs under control. To see why we are ranked among the best in the business, give us a call today at 772-202-3261 or send us a message through our website.