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What to do if you lose a business lawsuit

Owning a business can be a source of both delight and distress. One increasingly common negative to being an entrepreneur is the high risk of litigation. Lawsuits can appear from customers, employees, business partners and anyone else who interacts with your company.

Several methods exist to handle business lawsuits, such as arbitration, but sometimes litigation is necessary. You may have been confident that you would win the case only to have ended up losing. What do you do now?

Request a new trial or appeal

Although not an automatic option if you lose, requesting a retrial or an appeal may be available to you if your case meets certain requirements. These qualifications usually depend on errors or misconduct that occurred in the initial trial proceedings or on influential evidence that came to light afterward. A business litigation attorney can help you review your case to determine if you have grounds to take one of these actions, though an appeal is the likelier one to happen. You do not have to use the same legal representation as you did for the initial case.

Consider your financial situation

If the outcome remains the same, you will have to pay the settlement to the other party. You will need to consider your financial ability to do so. You may have to file for bankruptcy if you do not have the money. Depending on the structure of your business, your personal assets may also be at risk. 

Implement preventive measures

The last thing you want is for another client, employee or partner to try to sue you for the same thing, whether or not you did anything wrong. You can prevent this by making necessary changes to your operations, products or services, policies and procedures, training, insurance plans and complaint process. Have your attorney review these as well to ensure the highest protection. Learn from your mistakes, or you are bound to repeat them.

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