There are many phases involved in litigating a contract dispute. Throughout the process it is best to work with a knowledgeable attorney who can explain the proceedings and represent you at every step of the way. Legal counsel could also help you understand your options and whether pursuing litigation or a settlement is in your best interests.
At Sparks Law, our lawyers know the ins and outs of the contract dispute litigation process in Atlanta. Let us put our experience to work for you as we fight tirelessly for a fair outcome in your case.
The first part of the contract litigation process is the demand letter phase. This is where the victim of the dispute hires an attorney to review the case and send a demand letter to the other party. This letter demands an amount that they are owed to remedy the contract the dispute. Most cases come up with a settlement at the demand phase of the contract dispute process, which a skilled Atlanta attorney could assist in pursuing.
If the parties do not settle at the demand phase, then the next step is the lawsuit phase. Lawsuits are much more expensive than demand letters, so those filing lawsuits should work with a nearby lawyer experienced in the contract dispute litigation process. It is crucial to know exactly what the case is worth to each party.
Once a party brings a lawsuit, the other side is legally required to file their own version of the suit. They also have the option to settle if both parties can agree on a reasonable offer. Otherwise, the party and their attorney will file their response to the contract dispute lawsuit, moving the process forward to the next phase.
The discovery phase is often lengthy and expensive. This stage of the contract litigation process gives the parties another chance to settle and allows them to explore all evidence that is relevant to the case. At this phase, each party can figure out the strengths of their own case as well as the case against them. A well-practiced attorney at our Atlanta office could offer crucial advice at this point in the contract lawsuit process.
After the discovery process, there is typically a summary judgement motion stage. One or both sides will file a motion for summary judgment, which is a way of pleading to the court that there is no way for the other side to win, given the evidence submitted (or lack thereof).
Normally, the summary judgment stage is an additional lawsuit. If the judge decides to not make a ruling on the summary judgment, then the case will go on to the hearing.
The hearing is the most expensive part of the contract litigation process. Most commercial contracts require a bench trial, meaning the parties waive their right to a jury. In this case, the judge will render a verdict for the contract dispute.
Sometimes, a party will need to go through a post-judgement discovery phase to collect what is owed from the other side. This process can involve asset searches on the defendant and cost a significant amount of money, as an experienced contract litigation attorney could explain.
If you are beginning the contract dispute litigation process in Atlanta, it is best to reach out to a dedicated lawyer as soon as possible. There are many phases in litigating these types of legal issues, and an attorney can help you save time and money by advising you on your options. The legal team at Sparks Law is here to represent you at every stage, so give us a call today to set up a consultation.