There is a post titled “Memo to clients – What are the iceberg costs of litigation?” on the Human Law Mediation blog which lists a few costs clients often don’t anticipate when litigating and which should be considered as part of the total cost of litigating:
- Damage to company reputation of litigation
- Loss of customers
- Damage to Company morale
- Missed opportunities and diversion of management time
Litigation sounds great when you are about to start it but don’t kid yourself by expecting it to all be over in a month or two. It is a long and costly process to be undertaken when absolutely necessary. For other matters prevention is often part of the cure. Make sure you spend a little extra making sure your agreements are properly drafted and you include alternative dispute resolution clauses (for example, arbitration clauses) that the parties undertake to invoke when there is a dispute. These alternative dispute methods can help you cut down the time it takes to resolve disputes considerably even if they can be a bit more expensive than court litigation. Often a speedy resolution to a dispute can be worth the time saved in gold.
Remember the old adage: in litigation the only people who win are the lawyers!