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What to do if your Business gets Sued

Whether you own a large business or small one, being sued can feel like a frustrating and terrifying process. A component business lawyer can, like those at Burnham Law can lessen the chances of you being named in a lawsuit.  But if you find yourself in a dreaded lawsuit, what you immediately do after being threatened or served a lawsuit can have profound effects upon the outcome.  Follows these suggestions to reduce the risk of legal exposure for your business.

Read the Documents

While this seems trivial, if you are served with a lawsuit, take the time to read all the documents thoroughly.  Not only will the documents detail the allegations against your company, but they will also contain important deadlines and procedural requirements you need to follow.  Knowing exactly what you are being sued for is critical to gathering the evidence for the case.

Contact a Business Attorney

Take action.  Lawsuits have specific deadlines that need to be followed, and the clock is ticking.  If your business gets sued, immediately contact a business attorney.

The subject of business lawsuits can vary.  Lawsuits can be brought forth by clients, landlords, employees, a competitor, customers, or vendors.  Lawsuits can concern contracts, real estate, employment issues, personal injury, intellectual property, or other civil areas.  Having a law firm that can handle a wide range of lawsuits will help you stay on track.

At Burnham Law, we have business attorneys with specialized knowledge in different areas of the law.  Burnham Law has employment attorneys, contract attorneys, and other specialized attorneys that can provide pointed expertise in a specific area of business law.

Notify any Insurance Carrier

If you have the slightest inclination that the lawsuit falls under an insurance policy, immediately contact your carrier.  Most policies provide that the carrier will pay your attorney’s fees in defending against the lawsuit.  Many policies require the business to inform the insurance carrier of the lawsuit within a certain time frame to receive coverage, do not hesitate.

Preserve Evidence

Evidence in a business lawsuit comes in many different forms: documents, emails, letters, photos, videos, voice messages, etc.  At the start of a lawsuit, it is difficult to determine what evidence will be crucial to the case.  It is critical to preserve all evidence related to the case.  Take immediate action to ensure no documents are thrown away, emails deleted, video footage lost, etc.

Additionally, failure to preserve evidence can result in sanctions by the court.  Parties in a lawsuit have a duty to maintain all evidence that pertains to the case.

While you are preserving all the evidence, begin to gather anything that seems even tangentially related to the lawsuit.  Keep this information organized and unchanged (do not write on the documents or change them from their original format).

Cease Communication with the Plaintiff

If possible, cut off all communication with the plaintiff (party initiating the lawsuit).  If you must communicate, be sure not to discuss anything that may pertain to the lawsuit.  Any communication may be used against you in the case.  Never try to communicate with the plaintiff personally to resolve the lawsuit.  Rest assured, there will be an opportunity to communicate with the plaintiff through your attorney.  Your attorney will know how to communicate with the plaintiff in a protected manner such that your communication cannot be used against you.

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Ashlee
Hoffmann

Senior Associate - Civil Litigation

Boulder

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