What to do if You’re a Business Owner Who is Getting Sued

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Getting sued can be jarring for anyone, but it can be especially disruptive for business owners. They can cost a lot of money and harm the reputation of your business, so it’s crucial to ensure you can adequately defend yourself in court. In this article, we’ll discuss the necessary steps you should take to manage your lawsuit with minimal stress.

1. Contact a Business Attorney and Review the Case

When you first receive lawsuit papers, contact an experienced business lawyer and review the case with them as soon as possible. Check that the caption and service information on the lawsuit contains the proper entity or person associated with the issue. If they do not, or if the information is incorrect in any way, you may move to dismiss the lawsuit entirely.

If the information is correct, review the allegations and put a litigation hold in place. This will require your company to preserve all data relating to the lawsuit so you can compile all necessary information for your case.

2. Inform Your Insurance Provider of the Lawsuit

If you or your business gets sued, many business insurance policies can financially protect you. General liability insurance can cover third-party injury claims and accusations of defamatory remarks about a competitor, and professional liability policies can assist with certain client allegations. If your suit qualifies for what your policy covers, it’s possible for your benefits to pay for attorneys’ fees, court costs, and other expenses resulting from the lawsuit.

Just as you should preserve all recent company data once you receive lawsuit papers, it’s important to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. It’s entirely possible that your insurance won’t cover the suit, but the sooner you notify your provider, the easier the lawsuit process will be.

3. Hire a Defense Attorney

If you don’t already have a personal or company defense attorney, find one who specializes in the kind of suit you’re dealing with. A slip-and-fall case is handled differently from an employment discrimination case, so make sure your defense attorney has the specific knowledge that would be valuable to you.

Before you bring a defense attorney onto your case, ask the following questions to gauge their knowledge of the matter and overall preparedness:

  • Do you have experience with this kind of case?
  • How much can I expect to pay due to this case, and what will the specific expenses be?
  • How is this case likely to proceed?
  • Do you have testimonials from other clients?

4. Decide How to Proceed and Respond to the Lawsuit

Once you receive a lawsuit, you’re given a deadline to provide a written response. Deadlines vary from state to state, but you typically have to submit within 30 days of receipt. When you do answer, you must include the following information:

  • Admittance or denial of the plaintiff’s alleged claims
  • Your defenses and counterclaims against the plaintiff or other defendants
  • Whether you want a jury trial or an alternative resolution, like an out-of-court settlement

About Author:

Roni Davis is a writer, blogger, and legal assistant operating out of the greater Philadelphia area. She writes for Mosser Legal, a criminal appeals lawyer in Philadelphia.

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