Dispute Solicitors

Disputes are not pleasant. When two parties have a disagreement, it can often result in damaging behaviour and allegations. No one enjoys falling out but sadly, it happens. At QualitySolicitors, we work with you to find the best outcome - a resolution that avoids undue unpleasantness, unnecessary costs and prolonged anxiety and worry.
A dispute is a disagreement between two or more people. Disputes can arise from a variety of issues and can range from minor issues that cause inconvenience, to potentially very serious complaints where someone's life has been put at risk.

Disputes can arise for any number of reasons. You may have a boundary dispute with your new neighbour, a disagreement with family members over the terms of a will, or perhaps it is the quality of workmanship carried out on your property by a builder. Whatever the reason, you want to trust your solicitor to achieve the best possible result for you. At QualitySolicitors, you will have access to some of the best dispute solicitors in the UK.

Disputes are often seen as expensive and lengthy. At the outset, we advise you on what the costs may be of pursuing your matter. We promise to keep you updated on costs throughout so that there are no nasty surprises when your dispute is resolved. Our lawyers will negotiate on your behalf and try and resolve your disagreement as promptly as we can.

Here are some common examples of disputes that our solicitors commonly encounter:

  • One neighbour complained about the other playing loud music late at night
  • Complaining about a botched repair job by a tradesperson who won't offer a refund
  • Divorce settlements
  • A disagreement between family members over the terms of a will
  • Business disputes between senior management in a company

While this guide is a general guide to most legal disputes, you can also find specific information relating to boundary disputes and housing disputes here.

Issues like these are some of the everyday disputes that many people face, with the vast majority of these disagreements resolved easily and amicably through communication or compromise between the two parties involved in the dispute. But what happens when a dispute isn't easily solvable?

That's where you may consider legal action or dispute litigation, which involves settling the matter in the courts. This will require enlisting the services of a dispute solicitor to help you.

Dispute solicitors - what do they do, and why do you need one?

Your dispute solicitor is your personal champion. They are there to give you advice, help build your case against your opponent and act as your legal representation within the court of law. They can also help you claim the compensation you deserve or prevent you from paying out compensation unjustly by advocating on your behalf.

Making a legal claim against someone is a complex process, and your solicitor will be there to help guide you through it, using all their years of legal experience to determine the best course of action for you in this dispute.

As legal action can be a long and expensive process, they can also advise you whether it would be worth taking this dispute to court and can save you money by helping you resolve the dispute outside of the courtroom. This is especially important if you do not have the financial resources to fund a court case, which may be long and complex.

Alternative dispute resolution

Before launching into a litigation case against your opponent, your solicitor will first attempt to resolve the dispute through mediation. This process is commonly known as alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and can help save you hundreds of pounds in legal fees.

Before a dispute progresses to a litigation trial, judges will always expect both parties to have attempted some form of alternative dispute resolution as a first step to resolving the dispute. Judges will typically penalise claimants who have not attempted ADR before pursuing their litigation case through the courts.

The judge will also expect the opposing parties in a dispute to have met at least once, either with legal representatives or a third-party mediator present to help resolve the dispute amicably.

Throughout this process it is important not to let your emotions or any personal resentments cloud your judgement, instead try to think rationally about an acceptable resolution to your dispute, which may involve some level of compromise on both sides.

Types of Alternative Dispute Resolution

In the vast majority of cases, ADR is successful in resolving disputes, and the matter is settled long before either party has their day in court. There are various types of alternative dispute resolution which use different methods to help solve a dispute before going through the litigation progress.

  • Mediation

The mediation process involves the services of a third-party or independent mediator who has experience resolving similar legal disputes, which your solicitor will usually recommend. Mediators do not make a final decision regarding the dispute but try to negotiate a settlement that is acceptable to both parties.

  • Arbitration

Another method of alternative dispute resolution that you can explore involves referring the dispute to an arbitrator's decision to help find a suitable resolution to the dispute. An arbitration panel will listen and consider the arguments of both sides of the dispute before making a decision about how the dispute should be resolved. Both parties must agree to this approach in advance.

  • Adjudication

A similar approach involves using an adjudicator to help resolve the dispute. They will listen to both sides and make a decision based on the arguments of both sides. However, unlike the arbitration process, a decision made by an adjudicator is non-binding, which means that both sides can ignore their decision if desired.

  • Conciliation

Conciliation is an approach most commonly used within workplace disputes. Conciliators talk to the people involved in the dispute and may offer their opinions on a suitable resolution.

However, if none of these methods are able to resolve the dispute or an ADR approach is not agreed by both parties, the civil litigation process begins and the matter is taken through the court system.

The Litigation Process

Should any attempts at ADR be unsuccessful, your civil litigation solicitor will now prepare your dispute case for the courtroom. Your solicitor will work with you closely to build a legal case against your opponent, which is a complex process involving a lot of documentation gathering.

Once your case is built and the trial date beckons, you will have your day in the courtroom, usually in the county court or high court depending on the profile and seriousness of the dispute. Your solicitor and the legal representative of your opponent will each present evidence relating to the dispute before a judge and jury.

The jury will decide the verdict (deciding who is the winner of the dispute) while the judge will detail the specific damages owed. The winning party in a dispute will then receive a monetary sum in damages from the losing party.

While there are benefits to bringing a litigation case to court, it is usually considered a high-risk strategy, as there is no guarantee that you will win your case in the courtroom.

Benefits of Litigation

  • Results are legally binding

When legal disputes go through the court process, the court decisions are legally binding and final, with an expensive appeal as the only possible recourse to the losing party. As appeals are very rarely approved, a courtroom verdict acts as a final resolution to the dispute. In most cases, this finally puts the matter to rest.

  • Award of damages

To the winning party, the awarding of damages to compensate them can be a significant financial windfall and effectively refunds their legal costs with interest. However, the inverse can be true for the loser in the dispute...

Disadvantages of Litigation

  • Expensive

A legal dispute can be a very expensive business, especially if it goes to court. Depending on the complexity of the case, legal fees can quickly range from thousands to tens of thousands of pounds.

Alongside your solicitor's fees, there are also a number of mandatory court administration costs payable, including a court fee and a hearing fee. While the winner stands to recoup their legal costs from a successful verdict, there is no guarantee of this.

  • Time-consuming

Alongside the financial cost of taking a litigation claim to trial it is also worth considering the amount of time and energy it demands. There are several stages to any litigation case, meaning that it can take months or even years for a case to be fully resolved.

Can irreparably damage relationships

If you will retain a lasting relationship with the opposing party after your legal dispute, it is worth noting the impact that a litigation court case can have on the relationship between the opposing sides.

Court proceedings, by their very definition, are adversarial, with one party arguing against another, with only one case coming out on top in the end. This can lead to a hostile, confrontational environment, both in the courtroom and outside it, that often sours any relationship between the parties, even if the relationship was relatively cordial before the court case.

This is especially worth bearing in mind in business disputes, where you are likely to work or run a business together after the dispute.

We may also be able to mediate with the other side. Mediation is a formal process which can often reach a speedier conclusion and may avoid taking matters to court. Your lawyer will discuss the best approach with you, and you can then decide which approach is best for you.

How can we help?

Now we have explored how legal disputes can be solved, either through alternative dispute resolution or the litigation process, here's how our team of experts at Quality Solicitors can help you.

Our network of dispute solicitors can help you resolve legal disputes with expert advice and support through what is often a very stressful time for you and your loved ones.

QualitySolicitors also offers free initial assessment, which means that you can discuss your situation and options with us before deciding which approach is best for you. Once we know what your dispute is, we can aim for a quick and successful resolution for you.

Get in touch with our team using the form below today, we look forward to helping you resolve your dispute.


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