At ZinnLaw we are expert litigators and have won many, many lawsuits for our clients over the years. However, we are well aware that litigation can be a time-consuming, expensive endeavor, and not everyone has that kind of time and money. Not only that, as good as we are, you’re still not guaranteed to get the outcome you seek. Fortunately, we can also help you with a number of alternatives to litigation that may save time and money. You will want to weigh these carefully before choosing any path, as it can be difficult to change directions once litigation has begun.
Settlement: If you’re thinking about filing a lawsuit, consider the possibility for an out-of-court settlement first. Even if you decide to move forward with litigation, the parties can agrees to settle at any point in the process. Courts usually don’t require parties to attempt to settle, but most courts have ways to assist in the settlement.
Mediation: While disputing parties can reach a settlement on their own, it’s common practice to involve a neutral third party called a mediator. The mediator guides the parties’ attempts to settle. After the parties select a mediator, each meets privately with the mediator to talk about strengths and weaknesses of each side’s case. Once these are identified, the mediator will discuss how the risks may impact the party’s goals. While a mediator helps both sides reach a settlement, they cannot force an agreement.
Arbitration: Arbitration is a less formal way to reach a decision using a neutral third party. Instead of going to a trial, an arbitrator is selected to resolve the dispute. The parties present evidence to the arbitrator, who then decides which party wins. While similar to a trial, the process is shorter and less formal. An arbitration may result from a private agreement or a court may order parties to use arbitration rather than a trial, especially if it’s a small dispute. The arbitrator’s decision is final. You cannot appeal an arbitrator’s ruling to a court.
Litigation Expertise in Southwest Florida
The litigation process can be long and arduous. If you’re thinking about filing a lawsuit, contact an experienced litigator who can guide you through the process or who can help you decide to take an alternative route to a positive outcome. Brian Zinn has nearly 20 years’ experience representing clients in Florida’s trial courts. Contact us today for a consultation.