Can commercial litigation be avoided?
Companies stand to lose a lot of time and resources by going into the courtroom. The case will become a public record, too, which can look bad for a business. As such, most companies want to avoid commercial litigation, which can be done by using an alternative dispute resolution (ADR). Two common ADRs that do not require the court’s direct orders are mediation and arbitration.
What is a forced arbitration clause?
Many business contracts include a forced arbitration clause, which bars the use of litigation to resolve a dispute between the involved parties. Instead, closed-door arbitration must be conducted first and in good faith. If there is good reason to believe one party does not act in good faith or that the arbitration process was entirely one-sided, then the forced arbitration could be challenged in court.
Are verbal contract breaches enough to constitute a lawsuit?
Oral or verbal contracts occur when two entities come to an official agreement but do not put that into writing, i.e., a written and signed contract. In Texas, a verbal contract can be legally binding if both parties fully understood it, it did not involve an unlawful agreement, it was offered by one party, and it was accepted by the other. Violating a verbal contract in Texas could therefore be enough to constitute a lawsuit from the party that did not violate it.
Can an employer really stop an employee from working for a competing business?
Yes, non-compete agreements can effectively prevent an employee from seeking employment at certain businesses and for a predetermined amount of time. If the restrictions of a non-compete agreement seem excessive, then the employee can try to take the employer to court. On the other hand, if the terms are reasonable and the employee violated them, then the employer could possibly sue for significant damages.
What does it mean when a business dispute is “complex?”
A business or commercial dispute is “complex” if it involved multiple parties, such as more than one defendant. A dispute can also be considered complex if it must be resolved using more than one legal venue. For example, contract breach cases involving companies that operate in two different states might require legal action in state courts and a federal court.
Can my business partner legally force me out of the company I founded?
Yes, business partners can “force out” another partner in certain circumstances, even if the person being removed originally founded the company. It all depends on what was included in the partnership agreements governing the partnership and how the business was handled and owned. To protect yourself from harsh yet legal force-outs, you should always form partnership agreements with the assistance of a commercial litigation attorney.