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What is Business Litigation?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: C. Wilborn
  • Last Modified Date: 11 November 2016
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Business litigation is a specialization of law involved in defending companies accused of some type of wrongdoing. Litigation is the claim of damages decided by legal proceedings. A litigant is the accused, while the complainant is the accuser. In business litigation, the defense attorney represents a company in a class action, contract law, malpractice, or other type of lawsuit. Consumers, employees, or other businesses may have a lawsuit or court case filed against a company.

Class action business litigation means that there is more than one complainant filing a lawsuit. Any type of dispute can be a class action case. A litigation attorney may specialize in handling class action business lawsuits. He or she represents the company and its rights against a group of complainants in a court trial.

Business litigation attorneys must also be skilled at mediation as an alternative dispute resolution to a court trial. In business mediation, lawyers for both the litigant and complainant work with a neutral party, or middle person, to resolve or settle the dispute out of court. Mediation differs from business arbitration in that an arbitrator makes a legal judgment after hearing both sides of the dispute. Settlements made through mediation are common dispute resolutions in cases where former employees of a business claim they were wrongfully dismissed from the company.

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Contract disputes are a common type of business litigation. Business contracts are legally binding agreements, but the exact meaning of the written text in a contract is often open to interpretation. If a complainant files a lawsuit against a business for breach of contract, the company is being accused of not following through on what it agreed to in the contract's terms. In this kind of contract dispute, the litigation attorney defends and represents the company's actions in the context of the contract's agreement.

Malpractice business problems usually apply to companies and individuals in the medical field. Medical malpractice defense attorneys represent the accused in matters such as claims of surgical errors or negligence. Professional negligence business litigation applies to many different kinds of businesses from legal to real estate to therapy.

Consumer litigation involves claims that companies acted illegally. This could be in the areas of warranties or claims of defective equipment. Individuals or businesses may file a lawsuit against a company in matters of intellectual property rights or trademark violations. For example, if a complainant claims that a car company stole his or her invention for a type of motor, a business litigation attorney will represent the firm's rights and responsibilities during the court trial.

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