Dispute Resolution & Litigation
Disputes can be costly and time consuming, especially if a matter goes to court. Often, parties are emotionally invested in the dispute, which can make it difficult to separate out the legal issues. We help by identifying the legal elements of a dispute and providing targeted, practical solutions to resolve your matter. Our clients are guided towards alternative dispute resolution processes wherever possible to promote faster, more cost-effective outcomes. As experienced advocates with an excellent understanding of court processes, we can also provide strong representation should your matter ultimately need to be heard before a judge.
What is litigation?
Even with the best of intentions, sometimes you might have no choice but to go to court to enforce your legal rights. Litigation is the commencement of legal proceedings in a relevant court or tribunal with jurisdiction to hear and determine a matter in dispute and order a remedy.
Legal action must be commenced within a prescribed time, otherwise the claim will become statute barred. The cause of action must relate to the breach of a specific law or laws and be supported by evidence which may require both expert and lay witness evidence.
Once an action commences in court, the parties must comply with practice directions and court processes regarding the filing and service of documents, the format and filing of evidence and attendance at directions hearings, status conferences and pre-trial hearings.
Parties involved in a litigated legal dispute may settle the matter at any stage without proceeding to a final court hearing. In such cases they will need to enter into a deed of settlement and consent orders to dispose of the proceedings in court.
Court proceedings are complex and often involve an overlap of legal issues and there are always two or more versions of events. They can become protracted and expensive. Parties who are unsuccessful in a litigated dispute may have a costs order made against them. This means that not only will they need to pay their own legal costs, but they will be liable for the legal costs of the other party.
Being involved in a legal dispute is stressful, regardless of which side you are on. We are strategic negotiators, conversant with the various forms of ADR, and experienced advocates. We will provide you with a frank and objective assessment of your matter so you can make informed decisions to resolve your legal dispute.