Tips on How to Resolve Contract Disputes
Contract disputes can happen anytime. Sometimes the contents of the agreement may be in dispute, or there is a breach of contract. Below are the steps and tips on how to resolve a dispute
1. Review the contract
You can review on your own the terms of the disputed contract against your claim or the other party’s complaint. If the facts are a complex, consult with a contract attorney for interpretation. At this stage, you will know what you owe or what you are owed.
2. Do a Cost-benefit analysis
Pursuing compensation in a disputed contract can be a costly affair. To limit potential losses, do your maths. At this stage, assess the loss vis-à-vis the potential gains. Ability to pay for both parties is paramount at this juncture.
3. Collect evidence
Collate communications regarding the disputed contract. Put all transactions, contracts and paperwork in place to back up your claims. If you do not have a formal contract, proof of verbal agreements is necessary.
4. Try to have the matter settled without involving another party
Not all disputes are a result of complex contractual terms. Sometimes, poor communication between disputants can cause unnecessary contract impasse. Try to reason with the other party, using your collated evidence to see if you can make progress. Be open to compromise.
It saves you on legal or Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) costs and time that you may incur if you involve third parties immediately.
Sometimes the case may be complicated and may require expert interpretation.
5. Hire a contract attorney
Hire a contract lawyer, only when you have failed to sort out the contract disputes amicably. Review legal interpretation with your lawyer and the available evidence.
Go ahead and set a legal resolution mechanism, preferably ADR with the opposite team. At this stage, both parties should review all the facts of the case with the hope of making a deal. If there is still no progress, you can proceed to the courts.
6. File a lawsuit
A legal process can be time-consuming and expensive, but its outcome is legally binding. Pursue the legal process, when the gains outweigh the losses.
Whatever the dispute, be economical, save time, and try to resolve the issue at the earliest opportunity.