As experienced business attorneys, we have often spoken with clients whose businesses were put at risk by litigation. One common question that clients ask is, “When will this be over?”
The truth is that there’s no one answer for how long most business lawsuits take to resolve. While judges in Colorado state courts try to set cases for trial within a year of their filing, some experts estimate that the average case will go to trial until 24 to 30 months after the case has been filed.
However, as many as 90 to 97% of cases are resolved by some means other than a civil trial. The resolution may come in the form of a quick agreement, a dispositive motion (like a motion to dismiss or motion for summary judgment), or it may be prolonged. Some business lawsuits settle on the courthouse steps on the day of trial, while others may require a trial and a lengthy appeals process.
Here, we break down strategies that can decrease the time it takes to resolve business litigation.
Strategies for Resolving Business Litigation Quickly
When it’s to your advantage to resolve litigation as quickly as possible, your lawyer can take steps to move the case forward efficiently. This can be particularly important where a lawsuit prevents you from conducting business normally or threatens your business relationships or reputation. Your lawyer should take into account the impact on your business when planning your case strategy.
Taking an aggressive approach may sometimes resolve business litigation quickly. When the other party understands you are serious about taking action, they may be more likely to step down. Likewise, vigorous litigation may also help your business tell its story to the general public, which may blunt negative effects of litigation.
Depending on your situation, out of court settlements can be more cost-effective than paying legal fees, expert costs, and conducting extensive investigation into the basis for the other party’s claims or defenses. Sometimes, an early mediation between the parties may result in a settlement. Likewise, a targeted motion that strikes to the core of the dispute can bring about a faster resolution. Knowing when a case is ripe for settlement or disposition is an important skill for your attorney to bring to bear on your case.
Actions that Can Lessen the Impact of Business Litigation
There are other legal methods available to lessen the impact of business litigation on your company while the case is pending. Your lawyer should have substantial experience with the various remedies available to protect your interests in the face of business litigation.
One of these remedies is obtaining a temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction. These are orders issued by judges prior to a trial that may command an opposing party to do or to not do whatever is ordered. A temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction typically occur at the beginning of a case. They’re not granted lightly, so your lawyer will need to advise regarding strategy.
Additional strategies include seeking a pre-judgment writ of attachment, which can tie up assets while a case is pending and may have the effect of bringing an early end to the dispute.
Contact our Business Litigation Attorneys
Located in Denver, the lawyers at Keating Wagner use years of experience to protect Colorado businesses. We represent companies and individuals to pursue all kinds of claims, counterclaims, and defenses in a range of high-stakes business disputes. Call us at 303-534-0401 or send us a message to schedule a free and confidential consultation about your business lawsuit.