Will My Small Business Lawsuit Go to Trial?

Will My Small Business Lawsuit Go to Trial?

Will My Small Business Lawsuit Go to Trial?

If you are a small business owner, being served with a lawsuit can be extremely stressful. Even still, the prospect of having to go to trial can make an already tense situation that much worse. Small business lawsuits can go in several directions, and not knowing what to expect can be difficult. If you are in this situation, you will want to know: Will my small business lawsuit go to trial?

Florida Small Business Lawsuits

As a Florida small business owner, you want to be able to spend most of your time and energy growing your enterprise. However, there can be situations when there are disputes with customers, vendors, service providers, employees, or others. Some disagreements may be more complicated or heated than others giving rise to litigation.

Most Florida small business lawsuits concern breach of contract. However, your business may also be sued for tort liability (personal injury) or employment-related claims.

What do I Do if My Small Business is Sued?

Being served with a lawsuit can be overwhelming and frustrating, especially when you know there is no validity to the case. After receiving legal documents, your first instinct may be to pick up the phone and call the other party or their lawyer. However, it’s important to take a step back before reacting.

It’s important to recognize that what you received may or may not be a lawsuit. Additionally, if you have been sued, everything you do and say going forward may impact your case. In either circumstance, your first move should be to contact an experienced small business attorney to help you assess the legal documents and your situation. Your lawyer will be able to explain the allegations and potential outcomes and help you evaluate your options.

How Can I Tell if My Case Will go to Trial?

When someone files a lawsuit, there is always the chance the case could go to trial. However, most lawsuits settle outside of court, including small business cases. Therefore, you and the other party may go to mediation or arbitration to resolve your differences. Additionally, you could end up negotiating an agreement. There is also the possibility that the suing party doesn’t have a valid case. In that circumstance, your attorney may be able to file a motion to have their lawsuit dismissed.

Some of the factors that may impact your case include:

Subject Matter—Does the suit concern a routine contract or a more complex agreement? Are you being sued for a tort claim? If so, was there a wrongful death? Is this an employment-related claim?

Contract Validity—Was there a valid contract? You may be being sued over an agreement that is not enforceable. 

Statute of Limitations—Was the lawsuit filed within the applicable statute of limitations? Lawsuits must be filed within a certain time frame for the court to have jurisdiction over the case. Therefore, if the suit was filed late, you may be able to have it dismissed.  

Fault—Are you or the other party clearly at fault for the disputed issue? If a party is at fault, do they have a defense for their behavior? For instance, suppose you failed to deliver goods as agreed upon in a contract with a customer. Technically, you are in breach of your agreement and therefore at fault. However, you will probably have a valid defense if you couldn’t deliver because the other party went out of business and closed their operations.   

Whether or not your case will go to trial will depend on the parties, the facts, and the circumstances. The best way to determine what to expect during a business-related lawsuit is to consult with an experienced small business attorney. Your lawyer can help you analyze the case and identify your possible outcomes and options.

Contact an Experienced Florida Business Lawyer

Attorney Richard Sierra at the Florida Small Business Center assists clients like you with commercial leasing, business, and litigation matters. As always, Our Goal Is to Help You Succeed™. For an appointment, you may call us at 1-866-842-5202 or use the contact form on our website. We represent clients throughout the State of Florida, including Coral Springs, Coconut Creek, Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Pompano Beach, Sunrise, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, West Palm Beach, Jupiter, Deerfield Beach, Stuart, Port St. Lucie, Orlando, Naples, Fort Myers, Sarasota, Tampa, and surrounding communities.

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