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What is Financial Litigation?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 18 August 2016
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Financial litigation is an area of legal practice which focuses on dealing with settlements and court cases which involve financial matters. Many national governments have departments which specialize in financial litigation to protect the financial interests of the nation and its citizens, and private law firms handle financial litigation for everyone from mutual funds to individual citizens. In urban areas, lawyers may choose this area of litigation as a specialty, thanks to an ample supply of clients, while it may be more difficult to find specialists in this area in rural areas.

A number of different types of cases can fall under the umbrella of financial litigation. In all cases, they involve sums of money, often quite large ones. Some examples include collections, in which a company, organization, or government is obligated to go to court to collect monies owed, along with the flip side of this, fighting collections actions, fines, and other financial assessments. Financial litigation also covers financial fraud, trade in the stock and securities markets, restructuring, issues related to loans, and a wide variety of other financial matters.

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In some cases, the threat of financial litigation can be enough to reach an out of court settlement. Such settlements may be advantageous to one or both parties in a suit, for a variety of reasons ranging from preserving a company's reputation to potentially recovering more funds out of court than would be possible in court. In other instances, it is necessary to proceed to court to try a case before a judge.

Financial litigation attorneys are very familiar with the areas of the law which pertain to finance, whether they are working for the defense or the prosecution. They can also call upon experts to assist them with building or demolishing a case, and may work with other legal professionals to create a team of lawyers who can effectively work together to increase the chances of having a positive outcome in the case. Financial litigation can be concluded fairly quickly, or may drag on for weeks or months.

Fees for specialists in financial litigation vary. Lawyers may charge a percentage of monies collection (or saved), or may charge by the hour. When seeking an attorney for assistance with financial matters, it is advisable to meet with several attorneys, to have an opportunity to interact with people who may have different approaches, different fee structures, and different ideas for the case.

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