Disputes are common in the business world. Disputes may involve minor disagreements over a purchase order, or they can involve multi-million dollar deals that threaten the survival of a company. In many cases, business disputes can be resolved between the parties. However, some disputes may need to be dealt with in court. If you are involved in a business dispute in Colorado or Wyoming, talk to an experienced business litigation attorney about how you can solve your dispute quickly and efficiently to so you can get back to doing business.
Business Disputes in Colorado
Any individual or business operating in Colorado or Wyoming can get involved in a dispute with a customer, vendor, contractor, property agent, landlord, buyer, employee, state agencies, or other business. Common business disputes in Colorado may involve:
- Breach of contract
- Employment law
- Construction disputes
- Product liability claims
- Landlord/tenant disputes
- Property rights
- Partnership disputes
- Real estate law
- Tax law
- Insurance law
- Indemnity disputes
A simple dispute may be resolved without having to take legal action. In many cases, it is in the business' best interest to come to a satisfactory resolution so the parties can continue a business relationship into the future. However, disputes involving large amounts of money, complicated questions of law, and factual disputes may require contacting an experienced business litigation attorney.
Settling Business Disputes
Settling a dispute outside of court is generally quicker, less costly, and allows the parties to determine their own course of action going forward. This may be easier when the dispute involves smaller amounts of money, minor performance disputes, or the companies involved have an extensive business relationship.
Disputes can be more difficult to settle outside of court when one party is avoiding contact, the dispute involves companies from other states or countries, there is a lot of money at stake, or even when the personalities involved make it difficult to communicate in a professional manner. In some cases, negotiations may actually escalate the dispute, resulting in more areas of contention and higher stakes. Having an experienced attorney to represent you during negotiations can help by narrowing down the issues and focusing on a resolution.
Breach of contract claims is among the most common issues in business disputes. Breach of contract claims can involve a dispute over payment, delivery of goods, performance of the contract, or disputes over the terms of the contract. In these situations, the agreement or contract itself may provide guidance for what to do in case of a dispute. The contract may state that disputes have to be settled by arbitration rather than court action. However, arbitration clauses may not always be enforceable.
If one of the parties is not willing to negotiate, or the dispute was not able to be resolved through negotiations, they may have to take their case to court. In some cases, simply filing a lawsuit may be enough to force the parties back to the negotiating table because of the potential for a long, drawn-out legal battle.
Business litigation begins with filing a complaint in the County or District Court in Colorado or Wyoming, depending on the amount of money in dispute. One party files the complaint as the plaintiff, and the other party files an answer as the defendant. The defendant can respond with defenses to the claims and include any counterclaims against the plaintiff, and cross-claims against any other parties who may be involved in the dispute.
The case then proceeds through discovery, gathering evidence, exchanging relevant records, and taking depositions. Depending on the complexity of the case and number of parties involved, this can take months or even years. As the parties gather more information about the case and narrow down the issues in dispute, each side may have a better idea of the likely outcome of the case if it proceeds to trial.
At any point during the litigation process, the parties may decide to settle the dispute. The majority of civil lawsuits are settled before they ever get to trial. The closer the case comes to the trial phase, the more likely it is the parties will come to an agreement and settle the case.
The parties may try and resolve issues of evidence and law through filing motions with the court. If the parties cannot come to a settlement agreement, the case may proceed to the trial phase. A trial can involve a jury or take the form of a bench trial before a judge. In situations involving complex technical or legal disputes, a bench trial before a judge may be preferable to a jury trial.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) may be required by the terms of the contract or imposed by the court as an alternative to litigation. ADR can include mediation, arbitration, or a neutral evaluation. ADR can be beneficial to both parties because it is usually faster and less expensive than taking a case to court.
Alternative resolutions are also more flexible than court decisions. A mediation or arbitration can result in money damages, agreements to take certain actions, flexible payment terms, or a modification to the terms of the agreement. The results of ADR can also be kept private rather than become a matter of public record like a court ruling.
Talk to your business litigation attorney about whether alternative dispute resolutions may be the right option for your business dispute. They will be able to evaluate your case, identify solutions, and help negotiate a beneficial agreement. If a settlement isn't possible, they will fight to win your case in court.
Colorado Business Dispute Attorney
If you have a business dispute with a business partner, vendor, landlord, employee, or another company, the Olson Law Firm will help you settle the dispute and get what you are owed. We have successfully represented individuals and companies in business disputes and civil litigation. We will provide you with the personal attention you expect and deserve and always keep the lines of communication open. It is our dedication and commitment that makes the Olson Law Firm one of Colorado and Wyoming's preeminent law firms. Contact our office today.