Super Lawyers
The top Attorneys in Virginia and
the Washington, D.C. metropolitan
area, only 5% of the attorneys
in the state are named in SuperLawyers
ATA NBTA | The National Board of Trial Advocacy Association of Trial Lawyers of America Virginia Trial Lawyers Association

When a small business gets sued

No small business owner wants to open their mail on Monday morning and find a letter from an angry customer or former employee, or even worse, a notice from the local court. While some legal correspondence is a matter of formality and doesn't signal any greater trouble, it's important to take the time to look into each possible claim against your business and figure out if it needs to be resolved.

One useful way to begin figuring out how to respond to a letter from an angry client or former employee or a notice from the court is to check your company's insurance policy. Businesses often have the option to add-on policies that cover different types of litigation, and it may be worth investing in one of those policies in case a lawsuit arises.

Next, revisit contracts that you've made with suppliers, distributors, and other small businesses that you contract with. An experienced contract attorney will be able to tell you if there are terms in any of those agreements that assign responsibility for legal costs or that offer immunity from suit to one party.

Another important thing to remember if your small business is facing litigation is that it's illegal to destroy evidence or try to otherwise conceal it. On the other hand, you could save time and strife by beginning the process of isolating relevant information early and making it available for your attorney early in the process. This can be particularly important in the event of a lawsuit brought by a former employee who is alleging discrimination or another type of wrongful termination. Having complete records of your side of the story can help keep the claim out of court and ensure that you come to a mutually agreeable solution with the unhappy former worker.

Source: Businessweek, "When a Small Employer Gets Sued by a Former Worker," Karen E. Klein, Oct. 22, 2012.

Our Fairfax County law firm handles many different types of business litigation. More information is available on our website.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

DISCLAIMER: This website is designed to provide only general information; nothing contained herein constitutes legal advice nor is it an offer of legal representation. Use of this website is not intended in any way to create or convey the impression that such use of the website by any person, organization, or entity of any nature and/or kind constitutes any attorney-client relationship whatsoever and any information provided in this website shall not constitute legal advice. The use of any electronic communication available through this website with the Law Office of Richard L. Downey or any person associated with this website shall not constitute attorney-client relationship nor will any communication received by the Law Office of Richard L. Downey constitute an attorney-client communication. The Law Office of Richard L. Downey cannot make any guarantees as to the accuracy or currency of any information contained in or created in this website or the use of any link to another website contained in this website. The information that you obtain at this website is not, nor is it intended to be legal advice. You should consult a lawyer for individual advice concerning your own particular situation.

*The National Board of Trial Advocacy is accredited by the American Bar Association. Currently there is no procedure in the Commonwealth of Virginia for approving certifying organizations.