Doing any kind of business is inherently risky, and the business should be able to manage the risk. Handling the risk involves having a plan for managing claims which can be implemented quickly if a claim is ever made against the business. Using some of the steps specified below, a business will be better prepared to handle the disruption caused if it is sued.It will also be able to protect the interests better from the start.
Consult the legal department or hire a lawyer
If the business has a separate legal department, they should be informed immediately about the claim so that they can decide the best response. For smaller companies who do not have a legal department, contact a law firm in Singapore immediately. For example, only the legal experts will be able to confirm whether the business is really being sued. In some cases, the business will only receive a letter of demand, so the business is not sued. If a writ of summons is received, it indicates that the business is sued. Medium or small businesses which doe not have a legal department, should identify a suitable lawyer, counsel quickly, and hire him for dealing with the claim.
The business will have to enter an appearance within a specified number of days after it has been served with summons. If the appearance is not specified, the business may have to face the default judgement, which may be adverse. For almost all cases, it is important to ensure that the business enters appearance, before the specified deadline. However there are some unusual circumstances, when lawyers may advice their client to ignore the summons and let the default judgement be passed. This decision should be taken only after getting legal advice from experts, and depends on specific business conditions. Hence it is important that a business should identify and get legal advice from a counsel within 48 hours of receiving the summons.
Getting advice from the lawyer
The business should ask the lawyer, or counsel his advice on whether the summons were served properly. If the business was not served the summons properly, it will be able to defend itself using the incorrect procedure. This could force the adversary to refile the case, and allow the business more time to collect evidence to defend itself
Internal investigation to collect data
To ensure that the counsel gets the information he requires for greater efficiency and lower expenses, business should investigate the matter internally to find all the facts which are related to the dispute. This includes collecting all the relevant documents, interviewing the staff related to the matter and summarizing the details provided.
Analyzing the facts
It is advisable to write what actually happened due to which the business was sued. If the dispute is related to a contract, the terms of the contract should be checked.If the business can defend itself against the claims, this should also be mentioned. The business should also analyze and try to calculate how the adversary suffered financial losses due the action of your business. If this information is available, the counsel or lawyer will be able to quickly take action to protect the interests of the business.
Informing the Insurance company
In some cases, the business will have to notify their insurer. Many businesses are insuring themselves against certain types of business risks including lawsuits. In these cases, the insurer will also be involved in the decisions for the case. Usually there is a deadline for informing the insurer in the policy, and the business should meet the deadline.