The probable lawsuit against your firm became a reality. It was not unexpected, and it was not like you did not have time to prepare. Your company has faced many challenges since its launch, and this lawsuit simply represents the latest one.
Preparation is essential, and you diligently did so by discussing the situation with your executive team and trusted business associates, while scrutinizing the issues raised in the lawsuit and putting together a legal response. How you respond to a lawsuit may determine the outcome.
Dissect the issues, rely on strong legal team
Here are some important preliminary steps to take when facing a lawsuit:
- Discuss and dissect the issues: Conversations with your partners, executive team, managers as well as peers within the industry should be high on the list of things to do. By addressing the lawsuit, its details and origin, you may come up new information that certain colleagues knew. This can help you define your approach and response in the lawsuit. Conversations should remain confidential.
- Work with an experienced legal team: You likely already have had contact with a legal team, whether it is in-house corporate counsel as well as an outside law firm with experience in business litigation. An outside firm may have worked on a similar case, providing invaluable insight. Your legal team also will know whether the situation represents a valid lawsuit or serves as a move by the plaintiff merely to scare you.
- Gather every document related to the lawsuit: Your goal is to display evidence that contradicts any claim by the plaintiff. This list of documents may include contracts, invoices, emails, letters, texts, voicemails and electronic documents. Doing so allows you to create a chronology of events. Such evidence likely will be introduced in court and may help spark memories of details you and your team may have forgotten. Safely store these documents.
These steps represent the first line of protection for your company when faced with a lawsuit.
Effective response, confident strategy
Concentrating on and preparing for a lawsuit will take time away from running your business. Your effective response and confident strategy may determine whether such an interruption is a minor one or major one.