You enter a contract assuming the other party will fulfill their contractual obligations. However, breach of contract is common. When someone doesn’t do what they promise, filing a lawsuit against them might be the only solution.
Before proceeding, you should know the advantages and disadvantages of litigating a breach of contract case. Your decision requires careful thought and consideration. Pursuing a lawsuit might benefit you but can also lead to unfavorable long-term consequences.
A central issue must be a determination of whether you can collect any judgment, and the possibility that the other party will file for bankruptcy.
Below are some of the pros and cons of litigation in a breach of contract case.
Advantages of Litigation
Suing another party for breaching a contract might resolve the legal matter and force them to follow through on their promise. The pros of breach of contract litigation include:
- Clear resolution – Negotiating a settlement or participating in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) isn’t always successful. Litigation provides a clear result determined by a judge. Despite either party’s position on the issue, a judge uses the evidence and facts to decide on the case, leaving no confusion about each party’s responsibilities and rights.
- Ability to appeal – An appeal might not be possible after ADR, such as mediation or arbitration. The ruling is often final. That means you can’t pursue another case to get the decision reversed or changed. After a lawsuit, you can appeal the judge’s or jury’s decision if you believe an error occurred.
- Strict guidelines – Lawsuits require the courts to comply with strict guidelines regarding the collection and presentation of evidence. Litigation can also force parties to submit evidence since they can face penalties for non-compliance if they don’t obey the request.
Disadvantages of Litigation
You might think resolving the matter outside of court is more beneficial. Sometimes, it is. Other times, it may not be. The cons of litigating a breach of contract case include:
- More stress – Waiting for the lawsuit to end is overwhelming. Although you might believe it can achieve your desired outcome, the process of reaching resolution can create significant stress.
- Time-consuming – Lawsuits take time. They can take years, depending on the circumstances. Preparing a case for trial is tedious and requires ongoing commitment. It can take you away from other responsibilities.
- Cost – Lawsuits can be expensive. You’re responsible for attorneys’ fees, filing fees, court-related costs, and other expenses. The cost of litigation can also increase the longer it takes to resolve the issue.
- Impersonal – Lawsuits are impersonal procedures. Unlike ADR, you’re not dealing directly with other parties in an informal setting. You can’t communicate or work together to settle the matter. Litigation doesn’t involve emotion or personal relationships. The judge only knows the facts and bases their decision on the evidence.
- Damaged relationships – Lawsuits can damage relationships you work hard to build and maintain. If you have a go-to contractor for construction projects at your office and decide to sue them, it’s unlikely they’ll want you to hire them again. You should consider whether litigation will destroy your relationship and whether you want to take that risk.
Learn About Your Legal Options After a Breach of Contract
Contracts are an integral part of personal and business relationships. They outline each party’s duties and rights in specific situations. Determining how to resolve a dispute can be challenging when someone doesn’t do what they say they will do.
At Hargrave Law, PC, we have over 24 years of experience in civil litigation. We can review your case and advise you of the available options. We will explain how litigation might work in your circumstances and whether it could effectively resolve the issue.
If someone breached a contract, call 817-282-0679 or contact us online for a consultation with an experienced civil litigation lawyer in Bedford, TX.