Every day, your business activities include making difficult decisions. This may involve your ordering process, dealing with employees or keeping your customers happy. One decision you may not expect to make is whether you should file a lawsuit against someone.
If you are facing a conflict that involves a client, former employee, another business or someone else associated with your company, you have likely already spent time dealing with the issue. Perhaps you are losing money with each passing day, and you wonder what your options are to resolve the issue. While it is not unusual for business owners to file lawsuits, it is important to understand the appropriate steps to take and the reasonable outcomes to expect.
Moving forward with your lawsuit
Some of the common reasons for filing a business-related lawsuit include sales or purchase contract disputes, trademark or intellectual property violations, and employee contract violations. The first step in determining whether it is appropriate to sue someone is figuring out exactly who is responsible for the breach or violation. Knowing the answer could make a difference in how you proceed and what you hope to gain from the complaint.
Figuring out your goals is another important step to take early in the process. Do you expect financial restitution? Are you hoping to win punitive damages? Or do you simply want the court to force the other party to fulfill his or her part of the contractual agreement? Once you know the answers to these and other questions, you may be ready for the next steps:
- Send a demand letter to the other party to describe the complaint and what you want the other party to do to rectify the situation.
- Wait for the other party to respond with an offer to resolve the conflict or reasons why the other party denies your allegations.
- If the other party refuses to work out a resolution, file your complaint with the court.
- Prepare for the trial date the court assigns.
- Serve the other party with a summons to appear on the date of the trial.
- Prepare your case and present it to the court.
Handling even the preliminary details can be confusing and overwhelming, especially when you have a business to run. This is why many New Jersey business owners in your situation seek the representation of a skilled attorney who has successful experience in civil litigation. If your business, your reputation and your money are on the line, you may also benefit from such assistance.