Collaborate Your Way To Commercial Dispute Resolution

Collaborative dispute resolution is a legal concept that allows business entities to avoid the court process in their attempts to settle a commercial dispute. This is often done through mediation and negotiation.

The main advantage of this concept is that it allows conflicting parties to cut down on the costs commonly associated with court battles. However, this is not the only reason why you should consider a collaborative process for your commercial dispute. Here are three others.

It's Good For Your Business Image

Creating a good public image for your business is easy. Maintaining this good image is the difficult part. Regardless of whether you're the plaintiff or the defendant, a commercial dispute may leave a permanent stain on your public image. While this might be more of a problem for the defendant, there's always the possibility that the defendant's lawyers will outsmart your lawyers in court. The implications of losing the case are likely to hurt your business reputation.

Collaborative dispute resolution allows both commercial entities to keeps things private, thereby reducing chances that your clients will ever get to learn of the dispute.  The collaborative process allows you to worry less about the possible outcomes of the dispute and the implications that these outcomes might have on your reputation.

It Allows For Confidentiality

The high-stakes that are characteristic of commercial disputes create the need for the highest possible level of confidentiality. The collaborative provides the much-needed confidentiality.

For example, many commercial disputes involve trademark violations and the infringement of patents. The dispute resolution process may require you to divulge previously well-kept secrets about a trademark or a patent in a bid to prove that the defendant's actions were in violation of trademark/patent laws. It's safer for you to divulge such information in the privacy of a collaborative process than in a court battle that's likely to attract a lot of public attention (including that of your competitors). 

There's Often Greater Pressure To Reach A Settlement

The collaborative process often exerts additional pressure for conflicting parties to reach a settlement. Once the defendant commits to the collaborative process, they'll have already incurred significant expenses. The defendant is likely to be committed to a collaborative process because he or she will have to incur additional expenses if the process fails and the dispute goes to court. At the same time, the defendant will probably want to minimize the cost implications of the collaborative process.

The additional pressure may work in your favour and it might translate to a faster resolution of the dispute. For more information, talk to a commercial lawyer.