civil litigation

SO, WHY SHOULD I SETTLE?

“SO, WHY SHOULD I SETTLE MY LEGAL DISPUTE?”  HERE ARE 6 REASONS:

Before you (or, if you are a lawyer or paralegal, your clients) say “no!” to settling a lawsuit (or pending lawsuit), carefully consider the reasons for saying “yes!”:

  1. RISK

There are no “slam-dunks”. Every case is risky. If you can’t accept that your case, or any part of it, is too strong to fail then at least accept that sometimes (just sometimes) the judge or jury “gets it wrong”.  Therefore, even if you are certain, lawsuits are inherently uncertain. Settling on terms which are short of your (and the other side’s) best-case scenario is rational since: a) A 3rd party decision maker is taken out of the equation, leaving those who know their own case best to craft the outcome, and b) No one suffers their worst-case scenario at Court.

  1. TIME

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“Staying at NO!”: When Should You Refuse to Settle? When Should You Refuse to Mediate?

“Fortitude is the capacity to say no when the world wants to hear yes.”-Erich Fromm

“I do not believe that settlement as a generic practice is preferable to judgment or should be institutionalized on a wholesale and indiscriminate basis.”-Owen Fiss

October 31, 2016:

Today is Halloween, so it’s a fitting to play devil’s advocate just for fun – and perhaps for free candy.

Shocking as it might be to read these words (and those of Professor Fiss) in a newsletter from us – mediators and settlement counsel — there is no point denying that some cases just shouldn’t settle. To take it a step further, some cases should not even be mediated.

Forget about “Getting to Yes”. This is about “Staying at No” — and being fine with it.

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