I provide high quality representation for individuals and small business owners when litigation becomes possible or unavoidable. I am a trial lawyer with over twenty-five years of experience. I can advise you on ways to resolve disputes short of a lawsuit (such as negotiation, mediation or arbitration) and how to protect your assets and other interests in the event of a lawsuit. I am fully prepared to take your case to trial if necessary.
I have substantial experience representing all forms of business entities in governance and ownership disputes. I represent partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, and joint ventures in disputes regarding fiduciary duties, valuation, misappropriation and dissolution.
I also represent individuals in disputes over shareholders’ rights in close corporations and family companies, including freeze-out of company president/minority shareholder by majority shareholders, dissenters’ appraisal rights in change-of-corporate governance cases, and disputes over proper accounting for profits by management.
The fundamental type of dispute involved is, one way or another, the classic breach of contract or agreement, with its many permutations. I have prosecuted and defended this type of claim, from the simple to the complex, in virtually every business context: manufacturing, distribution, communications, high tech, services and real estate.
I handle a variety of business torts claims, including negligent misrepresentation, fraud, concealment, conversion, and breach of fiduciary duty.
I also have experience in litigation in which banks and other financial institutions may become involved, both as plaintiffs and as defendants, including numerous lender liability cases.
Civil litigation is a general reference to lawsuits for financial damages based on breach of contract, fraud or other wrongs, and other civil disputes. It is an expression which encompasses a range of disputes which arise between parties, both individual and corporate, either from contract, or from a breach of the responsibilities that flow between the parties. Civil litigation can involve negligence, occupiers’ liability, nuisance, breach of contract, assault, or any of a large number of specific torts, or causes of action. Personal injury and malpractice actions are common examples of civil litigation. Disputes in the areas of real estate, insurance, business, and consumer rights also fall within this broad category in both state and federal courts.
The key to successful business ventures often lies not in prevailing in litigation, but in avoiding it altogether. Where litigation is unavoidable, early consultation allows for a level of preparedness which benefits the client dramatically.
There are often several ways to reach a resolution, including mediation, arbitration and trial. Civil litigation is a lawsuit whereby a party seeks damages against another party. The damages can come in the form of money or the modification of some type of conduct. For instance, one can sue for breach of contract if another party fails to live up to the terms of a written agreement. One can also sue for a restraining order to bar a competitor from using various business property such as intellectual property rights.
The first stage of civil litigation is the pleading stage. The pleading stage simply refers to the filing of the complaint against the party that is the defendant. The defendant then has the right to contest certain elements of that complaint. The defendant can object on the grounds that the complaint does not state a cause of action against them or frivolous matters are included in the language of the complaint, to name a few arguments. At this point, the court will either find a complaint to be with or without merit.
The next stage of civil litigation is discovery. Discovery is simply the process of learning what evidence each side has regarding the dispute. Typically a party can ask to see any supporting documents the other side has and ask them questions. Questions can be asked in written form through a legal document known as interrogatories. Questions can also be asked orally by the party's legal counsel in depositions.
There are many other potential steps prior to trial. The final step of a lawsuit is to actually go to trial. Before that happens, however, the parties are usually sent to an arbitration hearing in which a mediator tries to make a deal between the parties. This process is also known as a settlement conference. If a settlement cannot be reached, the court will then set the matter for trial.
My many years of experience enable me to assist clients to satisfactory resolution of disputes, whether through litigation or by avoiding it. I can offer zealous advocacy, creative strategies, and experience in business, finance and accounting to achieve my client’s litigation and business goals. I thrive on delivering superior results in the kinds of litigation that affect the bottom line of my clients’ businesses.
Current businesses must contend with a growing body of law and commercial practice, and an expanding sphere of rights which has the potential to impact parties to contracts and affect other business dealings in ways previously unheard of. Let my commercial experience guide you through these issues before they become critical. With good planning and proper execution of a well thought out preventive plan, you can rest easy. Timely consultation and appropriate strategizing often result in early and cost effective resolution.
I handle cases in all areas affecting businesses and real estate, including contract disputes and other business and commercial matters. I also provide a full range of legal services to individuals and small business owners, including advice on choosing the proper business entity, drafting and filing articles of incorporation, drafting partnership agreements, formation of limited liability companies (LLC) and limited partnerships, and negotiating and drafting contracts. I can advise and assist you on business matters, buy and sell agreements, secured transactions, loan agreements, joint ventures, business succession issues, shareholders’ rights, sale of the business and dissolution.
I want to be your attorney of first choice whether you need representation as a corporation, small business, or individual.