Commercial Litigation Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. What is Commercial Litigation?

Whenever businesses have a legal dispute that ends up in Court or Arbitration, it is considered Commercial Litigation. It always involves a legal controversy relating to business issues and, if in Court, can be heard in either Federal or State Court depending upon the matter. This is a very general category of representation. These disputes can include, but are not limited to, breach of contract, failure to pay a debt, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, commercial landlord/tenant disputes and infringement of trademarks.

Q. How do you charge for representing businesses in litigation?

Eric Ludin can be creative in designing a fee arrangement that will best fit your needs. Typically, we charge on an hourly basis for our time. The hourly rate will vary depending upon the nature of the dispute and the experience of the attorney and paralegal working on your case. However we can, on occasion, handle business disputes on a contingent fee basis or partial hourly/contingent fee structure. The client is almost always responsible for paying the out of pocket costs incurred by the law firm. These costs include filing fees, service of process charges, court reporter charges, travel expense, etc.

Q. Who decides a case in commercial litigation?

Most commercial lawsuits in court will be heard by a Jury. If the parties agree, a Jury may be waived, and the case heard by the Judge. The decision of whether to have the case heard by a Jury or a Judge is a strategic one and will depend upon the facts of each case. Some cases are not heard in Court by a Jury or Judge and instead, they are determined by a single arbitrator or a panel of arbitrators.

Q. What is arbitration?

Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution. It is a legal technique for the resolution of disputes outside the courts where the parties to a dispute refer it to one or more persons who will hear the evidence and make a decision. Arbitration can be either binding or not binding, depending upon the agreement of the parties. It is often less expensive to arbitrate since discovery is limited and the proceeding is less formal. Parties will often agree to arbitrate disputes when they enter into a contract with each other. They can also agree to arbitrate a dispute after it arises in an effort to resolve the matter more efficiently.

Q. Will I be reimbursed for my attorney fees and costs if I win?

You can only be reimbursed attorneys fees if the contract upon which you are suing has an attorneys fee prevailing party provision or if there is a law that allows the prevailing party to recover fees in your action. You should discuss this with your attorney to determine if you can recover fees if you succeed in your suit. As a general rule, most costs (such as filing fees) can be recovered if you are the prevailing party. But not all costs are recoverable. Again, you should seek clarification from your attorney about which out of pocket costs can be recovered.