Dispute Resolution FAQs
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Dispute Resolution FAQ’s
How do I keep my information private?
This is often a concern for sellers when providing potential purchasers with sensitive information about their business. Any prospective purchaser will need to see information about your business so as to make an informed decision as to whether to proceed and at what price.
However, you need to ensure that the purchaser cannot walk away from the deal and use the information you have provided for their own benefit. You can therefore enter into a “confidentiality agreement” or “non-disclosure” agreement with the purchaser. These documents contain details of what information will be regarded as “confidential” and to whom it can be disclosed (for instance, professional advisors). They will also deal with what happens if the purchaser breaches your confidentiality.
How is litigation funded?
Usually each party to a dispute pays his or her own legal costs. The general rule is that the losing party in litigation is ordered to pay the successful party’s legal costs as well as having to bear their own.
What is alternative dispute resolution?
Generally speaking alternative dispute resolution (or ADR) refers to methods of attempting to resolve a dispute without recourse to formal proceedings. The most straightforward method of ADR is by negotiation.
If that fails parties to a dispute will often agree to attend a mediation hearing – indeed the Courts have made it very clear that in most cases parties are expected to do so. The Mediator has no power to enforce any kind of resolution on the parties but will facilitate a compromise where at all possible. Mediation is very often an expeditious and cost effective way to resolve a dispute.
ADR also refers to various other, more formal, ways of resolving disputes such as adjudication (often used in building disputes), early expert determination or arbitration.
What is insolvency?
Generally speaking people or companies are regarded as being insolvent when they cannot meet their liabilities. An individual in this position may be made bankrupt whereas a company in this position may be liquidated (or wound up).
In both cases the assets and liabilities of the insolvent company or individual are dealt with by an Insolvency Practitioner – typically an Accountant or Solicitor experienced in insolvency matters who holds a certificate entitling them to practice in this area and to be appointed as Trustees in Bankruptcy or Liquidators. We work closely with many local Insolvency Practitioners and have very significant experience of insolvency law and practice.
There are alternatives to bankruptcy and liquidation which include Voluntary Arrangements with creditors (which can apply to both individuals and companies) and Administration Orders (which apply to companies only and which seek to rescue a business).
It is essential to seek expert advice as soon as the prospect of insolvency arises (particularly the insolvency of a company) as failure to do so can have serious consequences for the individuals concerned where, for example, liabilities continue to be incurred.